Louisville to open 2018 with Alabama

University of Louisville football coach Bobby Petrino hinted last week at the ACC Media Days in Pinehurst, N.C., that the Cardinals would play a non-conference game in a coming season in Orlando, Fla. On Friday, we found out the opponent - Alabama. The two teams will meet on Sept. 1, 2018 in the Citrus Bowl to open the season.

University of Louisville football coach Bobby Petrino talked last week at ACC Media Days about how he liked to have a tough opening game for his team each season.

The Cardinals open with Auburn in the Chick-Fil-A Classic on Sept. 5, of this season and Petrino said "it makes a difference."

"That's going to be our philosophy to open with a big game most every year," Petrino said.

Petrino hinted at a future opening game in Orlando, Fla., and now we know the opponent in that game will be national power Alabama to open the 2018 season in the Citrus Bowl.

ESPN first reported the two teams will meet on Sept. 1 of 2018.

Orlando is expected to host a neutral site season opener each season. The Citrus Bowl will play host to Ole Miss vs. Florida State this season.

Louisville officials couldn't confirm the date yet.

U of L will open the 2016 season at home against Charlotte; the 2017 season in Indianapolis against Purdue; and the 2019 at home on Labor Day against Notre Dame.

The last time U of L and Alabama met was the 1991 Fiesta Bowl when the Cardinals spanked the Crimson Tide 34-7.

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