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When: Saturday, Aug. 31
Time/TV: 5:30 p.m. ET, TBD
These two teams met in the Chick-fil-A Classic in the Georgia Dome in 2009. The Tide’s 34-24 win kicked off their run to Nick Saban’s first title at Alabama.
This year, the Tide are hoping to capture their third consecutive crystal football, while Frank Beamer’s club is hoping to rebound from its worst season in a decade.
Hokies quarterback Logan Thomas and defensive end James Gayle are among the most athletically gifted players at their respective positions in the country. The offense is still a work in progress, but longtime Hokies defensive coordinator Bud Foster brings back seven starters from a unit that finished in the top 20 nationally in total defense last season.
But the defending champs are loaded. Quarterback AJ McCarron, running back T.J. Yeldon and receiver Amari Cooper spearhead a Tide attack that could be the most explosive unit in school history. Plus, Saban’s defense is once again poised to be one of the nation’s top groups.
While the Hokies are a proud program capable of putting up a fight, Alabama’s history in big nonconference season openers is hard to ignore.
Alabama 41, Virginia Tech 17