TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WSFA) - By Saturday night, the Crimson Tide will be gearing up for what could be an epic battle with Georgia in Bryant-Denny. The Walk of Champions would be typically be crowded with early fans but not Friday night.
Blame it all on COVID-19. The plaza has barricades and nylon ropes. It’s not quite the same, especially when you factor in that game day is setting up shop inside the stadium, not out front.
For much of Friday the Walk of Champions remained virtually empty, even eerie. Strange because during pre-COVID-19 times this piece of well-known real estate would be covered with fans taking in all the festivities of a major game the next day.
So empty, in fact, WSFA meteorologist Tyler Sebree essentially had the run of the plaza for a weather forecast during Alabama Live.
Still, we found Lisa Harper and her husband, Michael, making the best of a disappointing situation.
“It feels definitely different.. feel different the whole preparing to come here.. it feels a little bit off.. we were here last night.. everybody seemed upbeat.. we’re ready to go.. we’re excited," said Harper of Chicago, Illinois.
“It definitely does feel different.. not as many people right now on campus," said Michael Harper.
If COVID-19 wasn’t enough, imagine head coach Nick Saban not roaming the sidelines. That will be the case Saturday night because Saban contracted the virus. He’ll have to watch the game at home.
“You know I didn’t leave the country. I’m just down the street," Saban said this week.
“It’s going to be a great game. I don’t know what to expect being ‘Nickless,’" said Bama Paul Beck.
Saban is fond of saying “it is what it is” and that’s how Joseph McNeal looks at it.
“I think it’s an adjustment and you know not having the number of fans in the stadium.. the band not on the field.. you know 20,000 fans can get as loud as 100,000 fans so hopefully fill the stadium with noise," said McNeal.
One person we haven’t talked about and that is Miss Terry. We can only imagine what it’ll be like for her watching the game with her husband Saturday night. Maybe the coach won’t scream too much at the TV.
Alabama is ranked number 2 with Georgia right behind the Tide at number 3.