Alabama Crimson Tide Non-conference Games
The Southeastern Conference is widely believed to be the most talented conference in college football. For that reason, many teams opt to play a rather lax non-conference schedule, preferring to face opponents outside of other top conferences for their other four games. The Alabama Crimson Tide had typically followed that plan, though each year they make sure to face at least one team from another major conference. For the past two years, that game has occurred on the opening weekend, with Alabama trouncing then #8 ranked Michigan 41-14 at Dallas Cowboys Stadium. Last year, it was the Hokies of Virginia Tech that were the victims of Alabama, losing 35-10 at the Georgia Dome.
This year, Alabama will be returning to the Georgia Dome to face the West Virginia Mountaineers in the Chick-Fil-A Classic. The matchup will be taking place on Saturday, August 30th at 3:30pm. Alabama football tickets for the game have an average ticket price of $198.80, almost twice the amount of Alabama’s next highest average ticket price for a non-conference game. Expectations are rather low for the Big 12 team this year, with prognosticators projecting the Mountaineers to be a borderline bowl team this year. A win would go a long way in proving the doubters wrong, but just keeping the game tight until the fourth quarter would be a big moral victory for West Virginia.
The following week, Alabama will host Florida Atlantic for their home opener at Bryant Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa. The average ticket price is only $97.22, less than half of the West Virginia game. These two teams met in 2012 in the fourth week of the year with Alabama winning 40-7. That year, the Crimson Tide lost just one game on their way to a national championship, soundly defeating the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 42-14.
The third game on the Alabama schedule is also a non-conference game with Southern Miss making a visit to Tuscaloosa. The game will take place Saturday, September 13th at 6:00pm and the average ticket price is currently $101.79. Southern Miss actually has two SEC teams on their 2014 schedule, as they will begin the year at Mississippi State. The Conference USA squad went 1-11 last season, so the Golden Eagles will be hard-pressed to keep this game close.
Following those first three games, the Crimson Tide will begin their SEC schedule with a home matchup against the Florida Gators. They will play seven consecutive games against SEC foes before hosting Western Carolina University the week before they face Auburn in the Iron Bowl. Two years ago, Alabama faced Western Carolina, defeating them 49-0 at home. If it’s a similar result this year, Alabama fans who pay the $81.50 average ticket price will go home happy campers.
Though the non-conference schedule does not appear to be too difficult for Bama this year, their SEC schedule will be exhausting with road games against #18 ranked Ole Miss and #13 ranked Texas A&M, as well as hosting Florida, #21 ranked Texas A&M and then the aforementioned Iron Bowl against the defending SEC champion Auburn Tigers. For tickets to any of these games, make sure to check our TicketCity during the 2014 season!