When word came down over the summer the SEC would be moving to a 10 game conference-only schedule, there was speculation how the league would handle the scheduling. Would each team add their next two rotating conference opponents? Would there be balance? There were plenty of questions but one thing was certain. No SEC East team wanted to be added to the Alabama football schedule.
That has been certain since Nick Saban took over as coach. You don’t want to be on the other side of Saban’s squad when they are playing for redemption. Not since the 2015 Ole Miss Rebels, has a Saban-led team lost to the same opponent in back-to-back games.
As far as the SEC schedule is concerned, two teams from the East had to be added to the Alabama football schedule. The two unlucky teams were Missouri and Kentucky. I’m sure Eliah Drinkwitz is not going to admit that he was disappointed by the draw, but it is unlucky for a rebuilding Missouri Tigers team. Even unluckier when you consider that the game is Week 1.
Nick Saban and Alabama football have been consistently exceptional in first games of each season. Since 2007, Alabama football has opened up the season against a Power Five opponent 10 times. In those games, the Tide are 10-0 with an average margin of victory of 25.3 points.
Teams that play Alabama Week 1 seem to have lackluster seasons going forward. Even those teams that had positive outlooks before the season. The prime example being 2017 Florida State. The Noles walked into the “Greatest Opener of All Time as the No. 3 team in the nation. After the physically exhausting and mentally draining 24-7 loss, Florida State, 4 seasons later, has yet to return to anywhere near the top three.