On the neutral field of the Georgia Dome, the Alabama Crimson Tide will take on the Virginia Tech Hokies in the first test for the defending BCS National Champions.
Week 1 of the regular season normally consists of a tune-up game that will give the team a chance to find its chemistry, but the Crimson Tide are jumping right into the fire against a talented Virginia Tech team.
This fierce battle to open the college football regular season for these two teams is an excellent matchup that no football fan will want to miss. Here is how anyone can experience this game wherever they’re at.
When: Saturday, Aug. 31, at 5:30 p.m. ET
Where: Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Ga.
Live Stream: Watch ESPN
Radio: Free Football Radio
Virginia Tech Player to Watch: Logan Thomas, QB
The biggest key to the success of the Hokies in 2013 is senior quarterback Logan Thomas and how he has evolved as a serious threat under center.
With 2,976 passing yards, 18 touchdowns and 16 interceptions to go with his 524 yards on the ground and another nine rushing touchdowns last season, Virginia Tech will need improvements in both aspects of his attack.
Not only will Thomas have to continue using his legs to get him and the Hokies offense out of trouble, but he will also have to prove that he made big strides in the offseason finding consistency in the passing attack if Virginia Tech wants to beat Alabama.
The offense has the chance to catch Alabama before the team has a chance to find a rhythm, but the senior quarterback must be almost perfect to make the most of this opportunity.
Keep an eye on Thomas and the Hokies’ entire offense.
Alabama Player to Watch: T.J. Yeldon, RB
While many fans are focusing on senior quarterback A.J. McCarron and what he will add to the offense, the run-heavy game plan has not changed.
That means the Crimson Tide will be riding with sophomore T.J. Yeldon to a monstrous statistical season.
Yeldon had 1,108 yards on just 175 carries last season with 12 touchdowns (as well as 131 receiving yards and another touchdown thought the air), and as the featured back in the offense now, expect the second-year player to excel and easily topple those numbers.
Despite turnover on the offensive line, the group will be just as strong as the unit that Eddie Lacy and Yeldon ran behind in 2012.
Fans should expect a hefty helping of running plays this season and the sophomore will have monster numbers starting in Week 1 against Virginia Tech.
As well as Virginia tech will do this season, the program is facing a college football juggernaut in the Crimson Tide and will be rolled over. The Hokies will have a strong season and will do well in the ACC, but the success starts in Week 2.
Alabama has another national championship in its sites, and that will entail the program coming out of the gates strong and ready to get the best from every team on the schedule. As the preseason No. 1, everyone is gunning for the Crimsons Tide.
Led by the elite rushing attack of Alabama, the offense will dominate Virginia Tech and put up big points on the board. With a top-caliber defense going against a tough offense of the Hokies, the Crimson Tide will keep the scoring low for their opponents to ensure a big Week 1 victory.
Predicted Final Score: Alabama 33, Virginia Tech 10