Alabama women's basketball Hannah Barber gives the Crimson Tide a player-coach at guard

Maxwell Donaldson
The Tuscaloosa News

"It's not how tall, how short it's about the size of your heart, your passion."

That's what Alabama women's basketball coach Kristy Curry said about rebounding after the win over Little Rock but as a whole, no player on the Crimson Tide embodies that more than guard Hannah Barber.

Barber has developed into a lockdown defender and the teams starting point guard. The Homewood native has been starting games since arriving on campus and has started every game the last two seasons. She admits that the player she is today was grown out of necessity, being listed at 5-foot-6 but actually around 5-4.

"I think it was kind of born out of necessity, knowing that I am undersized that could lead to people that are taller than me having advantages," Barber said. "It was a way for me to stay on the floor, I had to figure out a way to guard especially once I got to college where I wasn't able to play."

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Her size hasn't slowed her down yet, Barber is fourth on the team averaging 7.8 points a game while shooting 50% from 3-point range. She was second in the nation in 3-point percentage going into Sunday's game.

Her play is a major reason why she stays on the court but her leadership on and off the court makes her invaluable to the Crimson Tide. She helps instruct her teammates around the court and is looked at as the leader of the team. The week that SEC play started, Barber buried her grandfather that Tuesday and requested to still practice that day. She then went out made four 3-pointers and played lockdown defense in the SEC opener against Georgia.

Barber's leadership is a big reason that she is sometimes referred to as a coach on the court for the Crimson Tide. It's a role that she has embraced this season, especially with freshman Karly Weathers. After Barber hosted Weathers during her official visit, Barber would communicate and recruit Weathers to Tuscaloosa. Once Weathers arrived in Tuscaloosa this summer, Barber took Weathers under her wing and helped to teach her the offensive system.

Barber hasn't coached a collegiate game in any capacity but has already garnered high praise from her current coach on where she could be in the next coming years.

"She wants to go into college coaching and I would without any hesitation, will tell you she's going to be a division one head coach one day because of all the traits that make her who she is on the floor, off the floor," Curry said. "...It would not surprise me one single bit if we look up ten years from now and Hannah is a head coach in the SEC."

Nov 7, 2022; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; Alabama A&M Lady Bulldogs forward Amani Free (3) attempts to block a shot from Alabama Crimson Tide guard Hannah Barber (5) from the three point line at Coleman Coliseum Monday, Nov. 7, 2022 in the season opening game at Coleman Coliseum.