Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Tennessee Volunteers Pick – NCAAM January 2, 2021

The Alabama Crimson Tide and Tennessee Volunteers are scheduled to meet in a classic SEC matchup on the hardwood on early Saturday evening. Saturday is an action packed day of college basketball. There is no shortage of opportunities of college basketball betting today. I’ve shortlisted a few games that hopefully come through.

As always, it’s important to maintain solid bankroll management. Chasing losses and getting distracted on a day with unlimited betting options can be overwhelming sometimes. Shortlist what you like and ignore the rest. There was nothing but small conference basketball on Friday, which is typically the case.

Wright State blew the doors off Oakland in Michigan on Friday evening to give us a win. The line in that game was way off. Sometimes bookmakers make a mistake, and that one appeared to be a big mistake. Wright State covered the 7.5 points with ease to beat Oakland by a score of 90-51. The Raiders are 5-0 in the Horizon League, while Oakland continues to sink deeper at the bottom of the standings.

There are a bunch of ranked teams hitting the court on Saturday. 12 ranked teams are scheduled to play today, though as often as games have been postponed or cancelled, it’s always important to say scheduled. There’s a massive list of games that have been scrapped on Saturday. At the moment, 28 games are being pushed back. Even with 28 games off the card, there is still a lot of basketball to get to today.

Tennessee will look to remain undefeated and advance to 8-0 on Saturday. They’ve been impressive and appear to be a team worth taking seriously. In their first ranked game of the season, Tennessee torched No. 12 Missouri by a score of 73-53. That was on the road at Missouri on December 30. They opened the season with a nice 56-47 win over a quality Colorado squad and they haven’t lost since.

Alabama have been up and down, but are coming off a couple of good performances. The beat East Tennessee State, 85-69, on December 22, and then 82-64 over Ole Miss most recently on December 29. However, Alabama hasn’t played a ranked school yet, and they looked discombobulated against superior teams like Stanford and Clemson. Head below for our free Alabama vs. Tennessee pick for January 2, 2021.

Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Tennessee Volunteers NCAA Betting Odds:


  • Alabama +9.5 (-105)
  • Tennessee -9.5 (-115)

  • Alabama OFF
  • Tennessee OFF

  • Over 143.5 (-110)
  • Under 143.5 (-110)


Alabama vs. Tennessee Prediction:

Alabama needs to prove themselves against quality opponents before they can be taken more seriously. Because right now, all they’ve done is beat up against inferior teams, while getting beaten soundly by good teams. In a matchup against Stanford as small favorites, Alabama were handled easily by a score of 82-64 win November 30.

Against Clemson at home, the Crimson Tide lost a 64-56 decision. They were able to respond with a 83-80 win over Furman, I’m not sure if a three-point win is much of a response. Alabama would lose again in their next outing, with a 73-71 loss at home against Western Kentucky.

The Crimson Tide go into Knoxville with an average of 77.3 points per game for 102th in the NCAA. Note that Alabama hasn’t played a ranked team until today, so if they had a tougher schedule, it’s hard to see the Crimson Tide scoring 77.3 points a game. Tennessee will be by far their toughest defensive test to date in the 2020-21 season.

Tennessee is second in the NCAA with 52.7 points against per game. They were incredibly impressive in their 73-53 win against Mizzou, as they smothered a quality Tigers’ offense on the road. Also worth noting is how they held McKinley Wright IV in check for just 8 points to open the season. Wright is a stud, but the Vols had all of the answers in a 56-47 victory.

They can score the ball as well. There are three Volunteers in double digits per game, and a fourth is scoring 9 points per game. They’re incredibly balanced and should give the Crimson Tide some problems. Overall, the No. 7 Volunteers have notched an average of 79.7 points a game for 73rd. Conversely, Alabama is 175th with 70.4 points against on defense. Not good at all considering the competition they’ve played. This line looks four or five points too short. I like Tennessee to win here by 15 to cover the 9.5 points.


The Bet
Kyle E / Author

Kyle is a veteran of TheSportsGeek and has spent nearly a decade providing accurate sports picks and writeups here. He has been a sports handicapper for 10+ years and started sharing his picks and thoughts in 2011 at TheSportsGeek. His expertise spans across multiple sports, including the NFL, NCAAF, MLB, NHL, and horse racing. Prior to writing for TheSportsGeek, Kyle was a fantasy football expert, who ultimately parlayed it into a successful sports betting career. You can find his picks daily only at TheSportsGeek.