Alabama’s football team officially reports Wednesday (“officially” because all players have been on campus most of the summer) and begins preseason practice (euphemistically called “fall camp”) Thursday. Thus, the appetite for football among Crimson Tide fans is whetted.
The SEC Network uses this time before the start of practice to feature each of the 14 SEC teams for a full 24 hours of program over a two-week period. That project ends with the Sunday marathon featuring Alabama.
It won’t be all about Coach Nick Saban’s Bama football team, however. The school, not the SEC Network, makes the programming selection. Alabama selected 13 events for what the SEC Network calls Takeover. And so while the day will include a look back at the 2015 football national championship, it will also recap Avery Johnson’s first year as Crimson Tide men’s basketball coach, interviews with the Tide’s individual champions in track and gymnastics, and an in-depth interview with Director of Athletics Bill Battle.
The University also produced a one-hour special, “A Season of Excellence,” that will air at 7:30 a.m. CDT and again at 7 p.m. CDT Sunday.
The schedule also includes:
· 2015 SEC Football Championship Game (December 3, 2015) – Football – Alabama defeated Florida, 29-15 behind Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry’s 189 yards rushing. Henry’s performance moved him past Herschel Walker to set a new SEC single-season rushing record and helped the Tide claim its league-leading 25th SEC championship.
· 2015 Alabama vs. Georgia (October 3, 2015) – Football – No. 13 Alabama defeated No. 8 Georgia, 38-10, on a rain-swept afternoon in Athens. Alabama’s defense forced four turnovers and freshman defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick returned a blocked punt for a touchdown to spur the Tide to victory and kick-start the team’s 11-game win streak on the way to its 16th national championship.
· 2015 Heisman Trophy Presentation (December 12, 2015) – Football – Running back Derrick Henry becomes the second Crimson Tide player to win college football’s most prestigious award.
· 2016 South Carolina vs. Alabama (January 13, 2016) – Men’s Basketball – Sophomore forward Riley Norris scored a career-high 27 points and tied a school record with eight three-pointers to lead Alabama past No. 19 South Carolina, 73-50, and hand the previously undefeated Gamecocks their first loss of the year.
· 2016 Tennessee vs. Alabama (February 25, 2016) – Women’s Basketball – The Alabama women's basketball team ended a 42-game losing streak to the Tennessee Lady Volunteers with a 54-46 home victory on Senior Night. It was the first home victory ever for the Crimson Tide against the Lady Vols.
· 2016 Maryland vs. Alabama (February 19, 2016) – Baseball – Alabama baseball claimed its first victory inside the newly renovated Sewell-Thomas Stadium with a 3-1 win over Maryland in front of a sold-out crowd of 5,867 fans on the night of the stadium's Grand Reopening.
· 2015 Florida vs. Alabama (January 23, 2015) – Gymnastics – Led by senior Kaitlyn Clark’s career-best vault score, the seventh-ranked Alabama gymnastics team upset defending NCAA champion and top-ranked Florida, 197.400-196.800 in front of an exuberant Coleman Coliseum crowd.
· 2016 SEC Women’s Golf Championship (April 24, 2016) – Women’s Golf – Freshman Cheyenne Knight and senior Emma Talley led No. 1 Alabama to their third Southeastern Conference championship under head coach Mic Potter.
· 2014 NCAA Men’s Golf Championship (May 28, 2014) – Men’s Golf – The Alabama men’s golf team captured its second consecutive NCAA Men’s Golf Championship with a 4-1 match play win over Oklahoma State. The victory made the Crimson Tide just the second team in 30 years to capture back-to-back NCAA men’s golf titles.
· 2012 Oklahoma vs. Alabama (June 6, 2012) – Softball – Alabama defeated the Oklahoma Sooners, 5-4, in Game 3 of the 2012 Women’s College World Series to give the Tide their first national title in softball and cap a 60-8 2012 season.
· 2016 Texas A&M vs. Alabama (February 10, 2016) – Men’s Basketball – Alabama upset No. 15 Texas A&M, 63-62, at Coleman Coliseum. The win was the Tide’s fourth over an AP Top 25 team in 2016.
· 2015 Goodyear Cotton Bowl – No. 3 Michigan State vs. No. 2 Alabama (December 31, 2015) – Football – The second-ranked Crimson Tide rolled past No. 3 Michigan State, 38-0, in the College Football Playoff semifinals to set up a showdown with top-ranked Clemson in the CFP Championship Game.
· 2016 CFP National Championship Game No. 1 Clemson vs. No. 2 Alabama (January 11, 2016) – Football – Tight end O.J. Howard caught five passes for a career-high 208 yards, quarterback Jake Coker passed for a career-best 335 yards, running back Derrick Henry rushed for 158 yards and Kenyan Drake returned a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown to lift the Tide to a 45-40 victory over the top-ranked Clemson Tigers and give Alabama its 16th national championship.
The SEC Network operates on Eastern time, so Alabama’s “day” actually begins Saturday night at 11 in Alabama, which is on central time. Here is the schedule as issued by the SEC Network:
Time (EDT) Programming
Midnight 2015 SEC Football Championship Game: Florida vs. Alabama
2 a.m. 2015 Alabama vs. Georgia (Football)
4 a.m. 2015 Heisman Trophy Presentation: Derrick Henry
5:30 a.m. 2016 South Carolina vs. Alabama (Men’s Basketball)
7 a.m. 2016 Tennessee vs. Alabama (Women’s Basketball)
8:30 a.m. A Season of Excellence
9:30 a.m. 2016 Maryland vs. Alabama (Baseball)
11:30 a.m. 2015 Florida vs. Alabama (Gymnastics)
1 p.m. 2016 SEC Women’s Golf Championship
2 p.m. 2014 NCAA Men’s Golf Championship
3 p.m. 2012 Oklahoma vs. Alabama (Softball)
4:30 p.m. 2016 Texas A&M vs. Alabama (Men’s Basketball)
6 p.m. 2015 College Football Playoff: Michigan State vs. Alabama
8 p.m. A Season of Excellence
9 p.m. 2016 CFP Championship Game: Clemson vs. Alabama