Free throws need to be fixed, behind the basket

Okay, Bama Nation, time for a little housekeeping. With only one home game left this season, let’s look ahead to the 2011-2012 basketball season.

We have to get our free throw problem fixed.

No, I’m not talking about our players standing fifteen feet away from the basket, shooting one and the bonus. I’m talking about what’s happening behind the goal.

Bama fans, we have a problem on our hands inside Coleman Coliseum. Ever watched a basketball game, where the opposing team takes a critical shot at the foul line at a crucial point in the game? The camera captures the action from behind the shooter, showing just how steep his uphill climb is to convert the free throw.

Fans going nuts. Signs and balloons distracting him. Large heads taking his eye away from the cylinder. Pretty much something like this:

Yeah, we don’t have that in Tuscaloosa. Not even close. We have a crowd about as intimidating as Aunt Bee.

The basket facing our student section is a site to behold. The aisle literally splits just behind the basket.

On the left side is the student section, where, to their credit, they put in an honest day’s work to distract. Most are doing the best they can.

But across the aisle from these well-meaning students are their parents and professors. Adult ticket holders who look like they’re taking in a lecture at the school of business on voo-doo economics. Their butts couldn’t be more glued to their seats.

At the other end, we have two sections of such folk. So basically, if you’re shooting a foul shot late in the game, you’re tired, the pressure is on…this is what you have to contend with inside Coleman:

Now, I realize our home record is pretty good this season, even with the milquetoast crowd. It’s hard to get better than 15-0.

But come on, administration. Do the right thing and move all the students under both baskets. Get rid of the dead weight. Please help make Coleman Coliseum more intimidating. Believe me, it wouldn’t take much.

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