Bama Hoops Hype

2017-18 Season Preview: Walk-ons

Photo by Johnathan Anderson - Bama Hoops Hype

I had to be the one to write this preview.  No one loves the walk-ons like I love the walk-ons. The guys that are still in it for the love of the game.  The guys with grit, hustle, and willingness to do what it takes to succeed. Lawson Schaffer and Landon Fuller: the perfect teammates for this Crimson Tide.  Always on their feet, inspiring their playmakers and cheering on their boys, they do essentially everything in their power to lift their side to victory.

With the Tide bringing in so much talent this season, there will not be much time on the floor for either of these two stars-in-the-making, but that is the last thing they’ll let stand in their way in terms of contribution.

The epitome of locker room personalities, these guys are a coach’s dream.  Keeping a team full of highly-scrutinized athletes loose is a skill, and Schaffer/Fuller were born talents.  Their ability to unite a locker room is second to none, the importance of which should not be overlooked.

In terms of gameplay expectations, unless a matchup is well out of reach, I wouldn’t expect to see either one of these guys on the floor.  BUT, as we saw last season, Coach Avery Johnson is very aware of the crowd’s adoration for these walk-ons, Schaffer especially, and has been known to send Lawson in if he notices that the crowd needs a bit of a lift to ignite the atmosphere.  I’m not saying Coleman should ever come out flat but…

Outside of these rare occasions, however, minutes will definitely be hard to come by, and therefore, these guys are going to need to make their difference in other areas of the game, or floor in their case.

Though the hype surrounding the “Bench Mob” seems to have passed,  Schaffer and Fuller could still apply a few lessons learned from the bench of Monmouth University (The G.B.O.A.T – Greatest Bench of All-Time) and try to make this team the complete package on and off the floor.

Overall, I’m not sure how much we’ll get to see these guys take the floor, but if the Tide can rise to their expectations, we might be seeing more than we could ever imagine.

 

Johnathan Anderson covers Alabama Basketball for Bama Hoops Hype.  You can follow him on Twitter for updates and analysis throughout the season.

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