Alabama football has a manageable schedule compared to other years during Nick Saban’s tenure.
Here’s a breakdown of the Crimson Tide’s 2017 schedule.
Nick Saban loves these tough season-opening matchups against Power 5 opponents. Alabama-Florida State is the best of Saban’s tenure in Tuscaloosa.
Florida State is the favorite to win the ACC while Alabama is the favorite to win the SEC. Both teams should enter the game ranked in the top five.
At last check, VegasInsider.com had Alabama at 15/4 odds to win the 2017 national championship. Ohio State is next at 11/2 followed by Florida State and USC at 15/2.
We could be looking at two playoff teams squaring off during the opening week of the season.
A fan’s nightmare
Enjoy Alabama-Florida State because the next two weeks on the schedule are absolutely brutal.
Alabama hosts Fresno State and Colorado State in back-to-back weeks.
Fresno State finished last season 1-11, losing its last 10 games of the season. Colorado State made a bowl game last year, but there is no chance this will be an exciting game.
If you’re a fan, these are the types of games you hate. Three of Alabama’s seven home games are against Fresno State, Colorado State and Mercer. One of those bad games is too much. Three is ridiculous.
Fun road trip
The game likely won’t be that great, but Alabama fans should be excited about the trip to Nashville for Alabama’s SEC road opener vs. Vanderbilt.
Nashville has a great bar scene and some really good restaurants for anyone looking to make the trip.
This trip doesn’t come up often because of the SEC schedule, but fans should enjoy it.
After Vanderbilt, Alabama has a run of Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Arkansas and Tennessee. That’s a tough stretch, but the good news is Alabama gets three of the four at home with Texas A&M being the only road game.
Ole Miss and Tennessee both lost their starting quarterbacks to the NFL. Texas A&M must prove they’re ready to compete with the likes of Alabama. Arkansas is a tough bunch, but the overall talent isn’t there.
Two challenges in final month
It’s tough to know what to make of LSU. The talent is there for the Tigers, but the quarterback play and coaching have been subpar over the past few years. Is Ed Orgeron the coach to get LSU past Alabama? We’ll see.
Mississippi State is a quality SEC team that usually plays Alabama tough in Starkville, but the Bulldogs don’t have the talent to compete.
Mercer is nothing more than an Iron Bowl tune-up.
Auburn got a lot of hype coming off its spring game. Quarterback Jarrett Stidham is being mentioned as a Heisman candidate. That may all be premature, but the Tigers should certainly be improved this year. The biggest key will be how Auburn performs on defense. Playing at Auburn makes the matchup more intriguing for Alabama.