Alabama Football: Tide vs Virginia Tech set for 4:30 p.m. Kick on ESPN


The Alabama Crimson Tide faces the Virginia Tech Hokies to start the 2013 season. The game is the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Game and yet another trip to Atlanta for the Alabama football team.

The Chick-Fil-A Game released this statement about the game: “Any way you look at it, this is an epic game between two top programs led by two of the best coaches in college football,” said Gary Stokan, Chick-fil-A Bowl president and CEO. “Add to that, two of the best fan bases in the nation and an unopposed time slot on ESPN and you have the makings of a battle of heavyweights the country will anticipate all summer long.”

ESPN’s statement on the game: “The Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game has quickly become the event fans look to as the official kickoff of the football season,” said Ilan Ben-Hanan, ESPN vice president, programming. “We have had premier teams with some of the most passionate fan bases participate every year and the 2013 matchup continues that trend. We know college football fans are already counting down the days.”

From the Chick-Fil-A press release: In true BCS-fashion, the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game weekend will feature night-before fan events at local attractions, a huge pre-game FanZone event, tailgating and cook-off events, and the traditional team walks prior to the game. More than 30,000 fans are expected to attend the ancillary events surrounding the event.

More details about the game, coverage and Alabama’s season opening games under Saban is contained in the official release below:

Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Game Time and Television Coverage Announced (via Media Relations)
The Alabama football team will face Virginia Tech in the 2013 Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Game at 4:30 p.m. (CT) on Saturday, August 31. The game will be televised nationally by ESPN.

The Crimson Tide will be playing in the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff for the third time. Alabama defeated Clemson by a score of 34-10 to open the 2008 season and topped Virginia Tech, 34-24, in the 2009 opener in the Georgia Dome.

Under head coach Nick Saban, UA has played in four previous neutral site regular season games. The Tide lost to Florida State in Jacksonville in 2007 by a score of 21-14 and opened the 2012 campaign with a 42-14 win over Michigan in Dallas. Alabama will also begin the 2014 season in Atlanta with a matchup against West Virginia in the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff.

Below is the complete list of game times and television coverage announced by ABC/ESPN on Tuesday:

Thursday, August 29 North Carolina at South Carolina 5 p.m. (CT) on ESPN

Thursday, August 29 Mississippi at Vanderbilt 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Saturday, August 31 Alabama vs. Virginia Tech 4:30 p.m. on ESPN

Saturday, August 31 Georgia at Clemson 7 p.m. on ABC

Saturday, August 31 TCU vs. LSU 8 p.m. on ESPN

Thursday, September 24 Kentucky at Mississippi State 6:30 p.m. on ESPN