By Stan J. Griffin

Despite a 27-point effort from senior guard Rodney Cooper and a gritty effort throughout, the University of Alabama basketball team suffered its first defeat of the season Monday night.

In the semifinals of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic in Kansas City, the Crimson Tide fell to 3-1 on the season with an 84-74 loss to the No. 13 Iowa State Cyclones.  Georges Niang had a monster night himself to lead Iowa State with 28 points.

Alabama used the early 3-point shooting of freshman guard Justin Coleman and Cooper to grab an early 8-2 lead.

With the score at 11-6 after another trey by Cooper, the Cyclones used an 8-3 run to tie the score at 14-14 with just under 13 minutes left in the half.

Stan J. Griffin

Although I want to be careful not to disparage Mark Speir's Western Carolina Catamounts, because Speir himself seems to be a fairly classy individual and his team obviously has quite a few talented players, let us keep it real about the Iron Bowl tuneup exhibition that was played Saturday between WCU and Alabama.

There is no doubt that Catamount standouts such as quarterback Troy Mitchell and receiver Spearman Robinson made some nice plays against the Tide, and Western Carolina certainly acquitted itself well as a whole on UA's Homecoming day.

Alabama, however, with last week's win over Mississippi State and this week's matchup against Auburn obviously on its mind, stumbled out of the tunnel not ready to play, and its' total lack of focus for a good portion of the first half is the only reason the game was still close in the second quarter.

By Stan J. Griffin

After a big home win against the Auburn Tigers in front of a record volleyball crowd at Foster Auditorium Friday, Ed Allen's University of Alabama volleyball team was back on the road Sunday against the Ole Miss Rebels.

Unfortunately for the Crimson Tide, it could not find quite the same magic that it did against Auburn, as it fell for the second time this season to the Rebels.

Alabama fell to 23-7 overall with the five-set defeat, including 11-5 in Southeastern Conference play. Ole Miss improved to 20-9 and 6-9 in SEC play.

By Stan J. Griffin

With its tuneup game against Western Carolina most likely already forgotten, other than the injuries that piled up during that Homecoming contest, the No. 1 University of Alabama football team can now turn its full attention toward what is arguably the most intense rivalry in the history of college football.

It is officially Iron Bowl Week as the Crimson Tide (10-1, 6-1 in Southeastern Conference play) prepares for a Saturday battle with archrival Auburn (8-3, 4-3 SEC) at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Kickoff is set for 6:45 p.m. and the game will be televised by ESPN.

During his press conference Monday, Alabama coach Nick Saban noted the enormity of the upcoming game, and what it means for college football fans in the state, but also for his team.

By Stan J. Griffin

Kristy Curry's University of Alabama women's basketball team entered this past weekend's Hall of Fame Challenge in Lawerence, Kansas as a young and experienced team that had struggled to an early 1-2 record.

After going 3-0 in the tournament to improve to 4-2, however, the Crimson Tide suddenly finds itself as a team on a serious surge.

Alabama wrapped up a perfect weekend at the University of Kansas Sunday as it gained a 58-51 win over the Temple Owls. Sophomore forward Ashley Williams led the Crimson Tide attack with her second double-double of the season as she tallied 20 points and 11 boards.