Observations: Alabama 94, Auburn 90
Can a home rivalry loss ever feel like a win? Of course not. But with a sensational Sharife Cooper now freed, the Tigers should be close to it.
PG Sharife Cooper (Shanna Lockwood/Auburn Athletics)
A home loss to a hated rival, when the game was close in the final minutes, is never going to feel good.
But Auburn basketball might have broken the record for most positive feelings after what, on paper, should look like a gut punch of a loss Saturday afternoon.
Auburn dropped to 0-4 in SEC play with a 94-90 loss against red-hot Alabama. The Tigers showed their youth in terms of physical play, early execution and late-game control.
And they also showed their explosive potential.
Bruce Pearl’s Tigers looked the best they had all season as an all-around offense thanks to the newly freed Sharife Cooper, who had a college debut that few around the Plains are going to forget. Cooper’s long-awaited first action started to unlock the further upside of his talented young teammates. Auburn is still a major work in progress in a season specifically designed for that, but Saturday provided a lightning bolt of optimism at a much-needed time for th…