PHOTOS: Crimson Tide Hold First Practice in Atlanta in Advance of National Championship Game
The University of Alabama football team held its final full practice on Saturday afternoon, working a 90-minute practice in helmets and shorts at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
Alabama’s Saturday began at Phillips Arena for the College Football Playoff Media Day that featured head coach Nick Saban and the entire team. Following the hour-long interview session, the Tide returned to the team hotel for lunch and meetings prior to departing for practice at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Saturday’s workout was the fourth of five practices prior to the College Football National Championship Game on Monday, Jan. 8, in Atlanta. Alabama will square off with Georgia at Mercedes-Benz Stadium with the game scheduled for a 7:17 p.m. CT kickoff. The final game of the college football season will air on ESPN with Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit calling the game from the booth, while Maria Taylor and Tom Rinaldi work the sidelines.
This evening, the Crimson Tide Sports Network will air the Crimson Tide National Championship Game Preview Radio Show beginning at 5:30 p.m. CT on the Crimson Tide Sports Radio Network. The show will air live from the team hotel and will feature Alabama head coach Nick Saban, who will go on air at approximately 6 p.m. CT.
The national championship pairing will be the 68th overall meeting of the two storied programs, with Alabama holding a 38-25-4 (.597) lead in the series that dates back to the 1895 season. The two teams have met once previously outside of regular season SEC play, with the Tide taking a 32-28 decision in the 2012 SEC Championship Game to claim the program’s 23rd SEC title and secure a spot in the national championship game. Nick Saban is 5-2 all-time against Georgia, including a 3-1 mark with the Tide, while Smart has not yet faced Alabama during his young coaching career. Monday’s matchup will mark the third consecutive season in which the Crimson Tide has made an appearance in the national championship game.