Alabama Basketball Team Looking Ahead after Season-Ending Loss in NIT

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) -- Alabama is hoping bigger things are to come after an up-and-down season

The Crimson Tide won 23 games before losing to Maryland in the quarterfinals of the National Invitation Tournament Tuesday night. A 1-5 record in December, injury problems and modest offensive production from the big men helped keep Alabama from the NCAA tournament for the second time in three years.

However, all five starters are expected to return, including All-Southeastern Conference guard Trevor Releford. Guard Andrew Steele was the lone senior.

Coach Anthony Grant has already signed two post players and hopes to land one or two more signees.

Grant says every player on the team has "tremendous room for improvement."

It was still the first time Alabama has won 20 games in three straight seasons in 20 years.

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