Alabama’s biggest rivalries are all within the SEC, but the Crimson Tide has history with plenty of teams across the country. We’re asking Alabama fans to vote on which nonconference program they hate the most with an eight-team bracket.
You can vote by scrolling down and on also on Twitter @TideSports later today. Voting for this matchup will run through Tuesday night. Check back later this week for the next matchup.
Teams that just missed the bracket: Southern Cal, Oklahoma, Southern Miss, Michigan. For explanations, listen to the first segment of the podcast.
Round 1: Notre Dame defeated UAB, UCF defeated Clemson, Penn State defeats Georgia Tech
Football series record: Texas leads 7-1-1
For years, Alabama couldn’t beat Texas.
The Crimson Tide’s first win against the Longhorns didn’t come until the 2009 national championship game. Even that game becomes part of the case against Texas. Coach Mack Brown has suggested that his team might have won that game if not for an injury to Colt McCoy early in the game.
Texas is another national power that has been a natural rival to Alabama at times, not unlike top seed Notre Dame. Before the 2009 national championship, Alabama had lost five straight bowl games to the Longhorns. Coach Paul W. “Bear” Bryant was 0-3-1 against Texas.
5. Ohio State
Football series record: Alabama leads 3-1
If this list were about coaches, Urban Meyer would probably be higher on the list. He was the coach Nick Saban had to surpass when he arrived at Alabama, and he’s continued to have success after leaving Florida for Ohio State.
There’s less history for the Buckeyes and Tide, but things still run hot when they meet. Their last meeting was the 2014 Sugar Bowl. That prevented Alabama from playing in four straight national championship games.
Alabama has a victory over Ohio State more recently than that: The two programs were the most likely candidates for the final spot in this past year’s college football playoff, when Alabama made the field of four and went on to win the national championship.