Alabama Agrees to Series with Arizona
The Alabama has made a concerted effort to beef up its football non-conference schedule in the future, in particular, playing Power 5 universities in home-and-home series to boost ticket sales and create intriguing on-campus matchups. Today the Crimson Tide announced a future series with the Arizona Wildcats. The Tide and Wildcats have agreed to play a home-and-home series in 2032 and 2033.
Arizona becomes the latest home-and-home series brokered by Crimson Tide Athletic Director Greg Byrne, Bryne has also orchestrated home-and-home contests with Texas (2022, 2023), Wisconsin (2024, 2025), Florida State (2025, 2026), West Virginia (2026, 2027), Notre Dame (2028, 2029), Georgia Tech (2030, 2031), Oklahoma (2032, 2033) and Virginia Tech (2034, 2035).
The Wildcats have a special connection to Greg Byrne as he was the athletic director at Arizona from 2010-2017 prior to being hired by the Crimson Tide.
Alabama and Arizona have never faced off in football before. however their current coach, Kevin Sumlin, is responsible for one of the most memorable losses in Nick Saban's Alabama tenure. Sumlin was on the sidelines at Texas A&M in the 29-24 loss to Johnny Manziel and the Aggies.
The Crimson Tide is still schedule to play Miami in Atlanta to open the 2021 season but currently it is the only neutral-site game on the future schedule.
Alabama's effort to add home-and-home series with Power 5 teams might be attributed to the Crimson Tide's effort to keep the Alabama fan base energized and give the fan base home games to look forward to.
Alabama has played Power 5 opponents in neutral-site games in 10 years under Saban's tenure. The Tide has played six games in Atlanta, three games in Arlington and one game in Orlando.
The last home-and-home series the Crimson Tide played against a non-conference opponent was against Penn State in 2010 and 2011.