In their first meeting, Alabama outmuscled the Cats at Rupp and sent them deeper into a funk they would spend a month trying to dig out of.
It's payback time.
Or should that read ... it's payback time?
We'll see, of course. Randolph Morris has emerged since as a reliably dominant offensive force down low, and if Rajon Rondo and Joe Crawford can stay on the court and continue the good work they did in the second half against Ole Miss, I think the Tide are ripe for a takedown.
This game will be lost if Jermareo Davidson and Richard Hendrix go right after Morris and get him into early foul trouble. As we saw yestesrday, Lukasz Obrzut and Shagari Alleyne are not effective ... increasingly not effective, actually. Alleyne was a mess out there Thursday.
It would be a bonus if Patrick Sparks could get into the groove a little sooner and if Ravi Moss could find his dislocated mojo. Ramel Bradley could loom large once again.
I predict another grinding game, with Tubby at some point trying out the "small ball" lineup to as yet unknown effectiveness. If Bradley, Sparks and Moss can hit the three, the Cats can win by 12. If not, and if Morris is bench-ridden, this game could be decided on the boards ... not where you want to be against Alabama.