High Cotton

For an Alabama team disappointed over finishing the last two games of the regular season on a down note, the cure is cotton, and the Crimson Tide coaches and players can now officially look forward to a matchup with Texas Tech in Dallas on the second of January.

Alabama and Texas Tech have identical 9-2 records, they will play in the 70th Cotton Bowl at 10 a.m. central time and be televised by FOX sports. It will be the first ever meeting between the two teams.

Alabama and the Cotton Bowl have a long and prestigous history. Alabama has played in the bowl six times, the most recent coming in 1982, a year before Tide Coach Mike Shula joined the squad.

"I learned more about it from the players talking about how they were treated by the Cotton Bowl, and what this whole bowl experience is all about," Shula said. "The reputation the Cotton Bowl has for the way they treat both teams - they have a great reputation and we're looking forward to being a part of that."

Tickets are $80 each, with general seating through the Cotton Bowl available by calling (888) 792-BOWL or on the Internet at the Cotton Bowl's official web site, www.attcottonbowl.com

The game is already being touted nationally for the unique matchup of one of the nation's most prolific offenses in the country in Texas Tech's pass-happy system against one of the very best defenses in the country in Alabama.

Alabama practiced last Saturday and will practice again this coming Saturday in the midst of one of its biggest recruiting weekends of the year. The Tide will resume practice full time on December 16, one week from Friday.

Dallas will be a veritable sports buffet during the week of the Cotton Bowl, with the NBA's Dallas Mavericks playing at home on the 26th and 30th of December, the NHL's Stars hosting home games on the 27th, 29th and 31st, and the Dallas Cowboys hosting the St. Louis Rams at Texas Stadium on the 31st.

In addition, the Alabama basketball team plays at Oklahoma on New Year's Eve afternoon.

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