CULLMAN, Ala. – This year’s NCAA Tournament bracket was officially unveiled Sunday and the Alabama Crimson Tide were selected as the tournament’s No. 1 overall seed. Both Alabama and Auburn secured spots in this year’s tournament field and both of them will be tipping off the first round in Birmingham Thursday.
Former Bearcats standout and Crimson Tide player Lawson Schaffer is excited to see both teams get the chance to play so close to home but he’s even more excited about his alma mater’s chances at bringing home a national title.
“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Schaffer said. “It’s cool that Birmingham is getting to host both Alabama and Auburn in the tournament this year. I have several brackets filled out and I have all of them with Alabama winning it all. Out of all the one seeds; Alabama got the best draw.”
Schaffer believes Alabama’s toughest matchup could come in the Sweet 16 against Virginia due to the contrast in both their playing styles.
“Alabama likes to play fast, and Virginia likes to slow things down,” Schaffer said. “It will be an interesting matchup.”
While Schaffer never played under current head coach Nate Oats, he did get to practice with him for a couple of months before he graduated and has been very impressed with what Oats has done with the program.
“I think this is the best team Alabama has ever had,” Schaffer said. “We have many players who are willing to step up into leadership roles.” Alabama will play the No. 16 seed Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at 1:45 p.m. on CBS and Auburn will play the No. 8 seed Iowa at 6:45 p.m. on TNT. Both teams will play in Birmingham’s Legacy Arena Thursday.
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