Collin Sexton may have just sent Alabama to the NCAA Tournament.
With Alabama down by one point with 4.4 seconds left in its SEC Tournament game against Texas A&M, star freshman guard Collin Sexton raced up the floor untouched and floated up a beautiful finger roll with his right hand for the win.
Take a look at the winning play:
Bama's tourney hopes were on the verge of disappearing.
Collin Sexton would NOT let it happen. pic.twitter.com/L7S5FzlzD4
— ESPN (@espn) March 8, 2018
And another angle from floor level:
— SEC Network (@SECNetwork) March 8, 2018
“Coach told me just to race it up the floor, and he told me to use my speed to get to the basket,” Sexton told SEC Network’s Laura Rutledge about the play design from coach Avery Johnson in the timeout prior to his bucket.
A major team on the bubble, Alabama’s buzzer-beating win may just have secured its bid into the NCAA Tournament.
“We think we have,” Johnson said to Rutledge. “Right now, we’re just focusing on taking one game at a time, but we think we have a very impressive resume. Sure, we lost a couple of games but we also won four in a row in arguably the best basketball conference in the country, top-to-bottom.”
Sexton had a huge afternoon for the Crimson Tide, finishing with 27 points, 5 assists, and 1 steal. There was a bit of redemption in his final play.
On Alabama’s previous possession, Sexton drew a foul while making a basket, but he missed the free throw. As a result, when Texas A&M made a 3-pointer on the return trip down the floor, the Aggies took the lead instead of just tying the game.
Sexton made sure that his missed free throw didn’t come back to hurt the Tide. Leaping off the wrong foot, from a few feet inside the free-throw line, Sexton used his non-dominant right hand to float the layup over the Aggies defenders for the 71-70 win.
With the win, Alabama advances to quarterfinal action on Friday in the SEC Tournament. The Crimson Tide will face rival Auburn at 1 p.m. ET from St. Louis on ESPN. Alabama split its pair of games with Auburn this season.