Alabama basketball vs. Georgia Bulldogs: Scouting report, score prediction

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Georgia presents a different kind of challenge for Alabama men's basketball.

No, the Bulldogs aren't the near quality of opponent that Alabama has in its path over the next two weeks. The Bulldogs aren't ranked No. 4 in the AP Poll like Baylor (Jan. 29), No. 1 like Auburn (Feb. 1), or No. 12 like Kentucky (Feb. 5).

In fact, Georgia (5-14, 0-6 SEC) isn't anywhere close to being ranked.

The Bulldogs being at the bottom of the SEC is what makes them a challenge. Alabama, which lost to the same Memphis team that lost to Georgia, has to make sure it doesn't relent, even in the face of a much lesser opponent. That has often been a challenge for the Crimson Tide this season.

"They're going to win a game here soon against somebody they're not picked to win it against," Alabama coach Nate Oats said. "We've shown we're capable of being upset with our lack of effort on the defensive end at times."

Here's a look at Georgia ahead of Tuesday's game (5:30 p.m. CT, SEC Network) in Athens as Alabama (13-6, 4-3) looks to win its third consecutive SEC game.

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Georgia's season

The Bulldogs sit at No. 232 in NET rankings and No. 229 in KenPom rankings. They rank No. 311 in defensive efficiency.

Four of Georgia's five wins have been Quad 4 wins, per NET rankings. The one other win was a Quad 2 win. The Bulldogs are 1-8 in Quad 1 and Quad 2 games.

By comparison, the Crimson Tide is No. 20 in NET and No. 16 in KenPom. Alabama is 7-5 in Quad 1 and Quad 2 games.

The Bulldogs enter the matchup against the Crimson Tide having lost eight consecutive games. Six of those have come in SEC play to Texas A&M, Kentucky, Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, Auburn and South Carolina.

Georgia lost to Kentucky 92-77, but the Bulldogs only trailed by four at halftime.

"Georgia is a team that, obviously record is not great right now, but they've been in a lot of the games," Oats said. "They're on the road at Kentucky, they're in that game for the majority of the game."

Alabama forward James Rojas said Georgia plays hard.

"We've just got to guard up and force them to miss and play hard," Rojas said.

Numbers to know

Georgia's team numbers reflect its struggles.

In the SEC, the Bulldogs rank last in rebounds per game (34.6), steals (4.8) and blocks (2.6). Georgia is 11th in points per game (69.9) and 3-point attempts.

The Bulldogs also turn the ball over at the third-highest rate in the SEC with 14.4 turnovers per game.

Players to watch

Georgia's top two scorers are Kario Oquendo and Braelen Bridges, who average 12.6 and 12.5 points per game, respectively.

One of Georgia's few leaders among SEC players statistically is Aaron Cook. He's second in the conference with 6.1 assists per game. Cook is a graduate student who played for Gonzaga before transferring to Georgia for his sixth season of college basketball. Before Gonzaga, Cook played for Southern Illinois.

Score prediction

Alabama 92, Georgia 65: If Alabama doesn't play with the proper effort, the Bulldogs could make this game more interesting than it should be. But Alabama has too much talent for this Bulldogs team to keep up offensively. Especially if the Crimson Tide can hit from deep consistently. Alabama has plenty of big games coming up, but it needs to show up against Georgia, too.

Contact Alabama reporter Nick Kelly: Follow him on Twitter: @_NickKelly

This article originally appeared on The Tuscaloosa News: Alabama basketball vs. Georgia Bulldogs scouting report, prediction

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