Were you aware?
I'm not going to waste your time acting like this will be some sort of legitimate athletic contest. This is actually a pretty embarrassing situation with one of the most storied programs in college football history getting ready to beat the daylights out of a start-up program in its first year of play. And for what? A favor to a loser coach we ran off a couple decades ago? I don't get it. Nonetheless, we're going to play the game. Hopefully we'll put it away early without ultimately looking like total Bielemas for running it up against these Georgia State kids and keep everybody important healthy for Auburn next week.
The two things about this game I'm actually interested in?
1. How many people show up. Alabama actually has a pretty strong tradition of putting good crowds in the stands even for these walk-over games. However Bama rarely ever plays games on week nights. The last time the Tide played on a Thursday night during the regular season was against Southern Miss in 2001. The odd scheduling (arranged for the benefit of Bama's prep for Auburn next Friday), coupled with the lack of a strong opponent, could lead to quite a few people staying home. Throw in the general damper 2 losses have put on the general mood lately and you've got a recipe for wide open spaces in the stands tonight.
2. Will Georgia State get in the endzone? Alabama has only allowed 32 points at home this season through 5 games. Opponents have only managed to score 2 TDs in Bryant-Denny Stadium. That would be a pretty impressive stat to carry into the Iron Bowl. It's highly doubtful the Panthers will even get a sniff of the endzone against the 1st defense, but they may have some opportunities once the subs start coming in (maybe as soon as the 2nd quarter). This may be the one thing that keeps even me motivated to watch this game the whole way through.
Be back sometime soon to talk about the one game left that matters for Alabama...