Sally’s Adventures: Football stadium tour across Alabama

Published: Sep. 1, 2021 at 3:26 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - The college football season has finally arrived. WSFA 12 News anchor Sally Pitts is getting you ready by touring football stadiums across Alabama in “Sally’s Adventures” series.

Bryant-Denny Stadium, home to the Crimson Tide, seats more than 100,000 fans. That’s the largest in the state.

“Your first time seeing it is crazy, and I couldn’t even explain it to like a younger guy. They just have to see it for themselves,” said Alabama defensive lineman D.J. Dale.

Alabama is coming off another national title.

Just down the road, West Alabama plans to celebrate the 50th anniversary of its 1971 national championship later this fall in a newly renovated stadium.

“We’ve already got brand new turf, brand new seating in the lower side of the home side. We’re also going to have a video board Jumbotron put in,” said coach Brett Gilliland.

While West Alabama is building on its past, South Alabama looks to the future in its new stadium. Hancock Whitney opened in the 2020 season. The Jags called this season a grand reopening.

“It’s such a reward to be able to play in front of a fan base, right? And to have a fan base that there’s an excitement, there’s an energy in the crowd because of the new stadium, that feeds our players’ excitement and also the fans alike,” said the Jags’ head coach, Kane Wommack.

The Jags head to Troy this year in the Battle for the Belt. The Trojans look to welcome a full house to the Vet this season.

Athletics director Brent Jones says north end zone seating offers the closest seating in Division I football.

“It’s only about 15 yards from the end zone,” said Jones.

From the Trojans to the Tigers in Auburn. At Jordan-Hare it’s all about family, history and tradition. Auburn cheer co-head Casey Doerer said, “The Auburn family’s amazing. I think people that come that are visitors will say, ‘I’ve never met a fan base that’s so genuine and nice and just welcoming.’”

Auburn welcomes Alabama State for the second game they have this season. The Hornets begin their season at home. It’s their 10th at Hornet Stadium.

“It is the only one like it. When you’re passing that 85 I tell everybody when you bring your recruits make sure they drive through 85,” said ASU coach Donald Hill-Eley. “So if they look up to the to the side and see this Alabama State stadium they normally direct off away but give a couple.”

Montgomery also features two other college stadiums that also call the capital city home. Their coaches say their stadiums may be small but the ground is loud.

“This is home for us. The people make the place. We certainly love our fans, they love us, so it’s easy to go out there and put on a show for them,” said Faulkner Eagles head coach Rob Gray.

Huntingdon head coach Mike Turk said, “Just the atmosphere is pretty cool for a small college football, and we go a lot of places and play a lot of places and we don’t go anywhere that’s better than this.”

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