Analyzing Collin Sexton and Nickeil Alexander-Walker in the Alabama-Virginia Tech Game

March 16, 2018

by Alan Lu

In the Alabama-Virginia Tech game, it was a back and forth contest in which both teams traded leads.  At first, it seemed as if Virginia Tech was in control, but Collin Sexton was able to string together numerous solid plays down the stretch to lead the Alabama Crimson Tide to get the win over the Hokies.  As I was looking to primarily scout Collin Sexton, the main focus of this article will be on how well he played in his team’s win over Virginia Tech in the first round of the 2018 NCAA Tournament.

Alabama’s freshman point guard, Collin Sexton had a solid showing in his team’s win over Virginia Tech, as he excelled at making plays on both ends of the floor, especially in the second half.  Sexton showed a good ability to get scores on speedy drives to the basket.  He showed a knack for scoring on fast breaks, and he also has the balance and body control to get scores off the glass.  Plus, he showed a knack for knocking down pull-up, long two-point shots, and he was able to make a tough, spinning fadeaway jumper late in the game.  Though Sexton did not make a three-point shot, he really excelled at making shots off the dribble to get buckets for his team.

He also displayed fairly good playmaking skills.  Sexton is a speedy playmaker that has great speed, and he can draw multiple defenders in before dropping off a pass to a teammate down low to set up an easy score around the basket.  He also did a good job of getting the ball to shooters to set up scoring chances.  But sometimes, Sexton can play too wildly, which can lead him to commit turnovers.  Occasionally, he may over-penetrate, as he may end up losing the ball on a drive, or throw inaccurate passes as he may play too fast every once in a while.  Also, he was able to chip in to get several boards when he was on the floor.

Sexton played adequate defense.  He would contest threes to force some misses, and he also drew a clutch charge to prevent an opponent from scoring on a drive late in the game.  But sometimes, Sexton had some trouble defending opponents off the dribble, as he would not always be in good position to defend them.  In general, Collin Sexton had a solid showing, as he played well in virtually every facet of the game to help get his team the win over Virginia Tech.  He will still need to improve his jump shot and play more under control, but he is a vastly talented playmaker that will likely go in the lottery of the upcoming draft.

Virginia Tech’s 6-5 freshman guard, Nickeil Alexander-Walker had a fairly good game, as he showed off versatile scoring skills on offense.  He can knock down spot-up threes off the glass, and he also can score on drives to the hoop.  He also managed to catch a long inbounds pass to score quickly on a fast break drive once.  Plus, he also showed above average defensive skills as he managed to poke a ball out of bounds to almost get a steal.  Overall, Alexander-Walker did a good job of shooting and scoring the basketball, and he could be a second round pick whenever he elects to enter the draft.

Alabama’s 6-5 freshman guard, John Petty played well to help lead his team to a win over Virginia Tech.  He did a great job of knocking down threes, as he can do so off the catch or dribble.  He also can throw quick entry passes to set up scores, and he also threw a dump off pass to notch an assist off the dribble.  But sometimes, Petty will throw bad interior passes in traffic that would end up getting picked off, as he would not always make good reads on offense.  In general, Petty had a very good showing, as he scored 20 points, and he made 6 threes to help his team get the win over Virginia Tech.  Petty is an athletic floor spacer that shoots the ball well, and he could end up being a second round pick in the future.

Virginia Tech’s 6-5 senior guard, Justin Bibbs did a very good job of shooting and scoring the basketball, as he can make spot-up threes off the catch, and he also can run off screens to do so.  Plus, he would draw free throws on strong drives to the hoop, and he also managed to score on an acrobatic leaner from the high post after getting the ball on a curl cut.  He struggled with turnovers at times, but Bibbs played well as he excelled as a scorer on offense, and he could end up on an NBA team’s summer league roster this year.

Alabama’s 6-9 junior big man, Donta Hall excelled at throwing down powerful dunks to finish plays around the basket for Alabama.  He struggled with his position defense in this game as he had some trouble defending opponents on drives as well as in the post, but he did manage to draw a charge once when defending a high post drive.  Hall is an athletic big man that could be a potential second round pick whenever he elects to enter the NBA draft.

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