What to know before your first football game


CW/ Natalie Teat

The student section cheers on the Alabama football team in their game against the University of Louisiana-Monroe on September 17 in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Dean Harrell, Contributing Writer

It’s almost that time of year again in Tuscaloosa. As the 2023-2024 football season approaches, excitement and anticipation are in the air. As Saturdays at the Capstone begin to get more hectic, here’s what to know before setting foot in Bryant-Denny Stadium.  

You may have just selected your first ticket package and noticed that you are getting a ticket for only three or four of the home games. Never fear — you can still get tickets for the games not included in your package.  

“As a freshman, you’re only able to get a ticket for about half of the games,” sophomore mechanical engineering major Brody Bell said. “The ticket lottery gives you the opportunity to go to games you don’t get tickets to and release tickets for games that you’re not able to go to, in order to give other students the chance to go.” 

In your myBama account, “myTickets” houses the ticket lottery and gives you the option to request a donated ticket. Students who do not plan on attending the game can donate their tickets back into the ticket pool, and they can be picked up by those who request to have one. Also within myTickets, you can trade your tickets or transfer them to other students. For example, if you have an upper bowl ticket and a friend of yours has a lower bowl ticket, you can trade your ticket with them, giving you lower bowl access. 

Football is not only a major part of the culture at The University of Alabama, but in the South in general. Incoming out-of-state students, who may be unfamiliar with SEC football, may be in for a culture shock.  

“Football was definitely bigger here than where I am from,” junior marketing major and Maryland native Reagan Powers said. “I was more into it once I was around people who were always talking about it and excited about it.” 

Most students from the South agree that summer weather can be brutal, especially in August and September. Since the first home game is Sept. 2, it will be a hot one in Bryant-Denny Stadium. 

Fortunately, the stadium allows students to bring in empty water bottles that can be filled by cooling stations throughout the stadium. With temperatures often rising over 90 degrees, staying hydrated is key, especially for 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. kickoffs. 

Getting the entire crowd involved in the game is what makes being inside the stadium such an immersive experience despite the heat. 

The famous “Dixieland Delight” tradition is perhaps the most popular crowd tradition, as the entire stadium rises to their feet to sing the Alabama — the band, not the state — favorite. You can feel the energy of over 100,000 fans in attendance in the fourth quarter as the crowd’s singing nearly drowns out the stadium speakers. 

“The electric atmosphere of the crowd draws an experience like no other,” sophomore nursing major Sarah Figaretti said. “‘Dixieland Delight’ is not just any song. It brings so much excitement and energy to a huge number of people that creates a feeling that is unmatched.” 

Whether you get the chance to witness your first Third Saturday in October game against Tennessee, participate in singing “Dixieland Delight,” or stick around for your first “Rammer Jammer” postgame chant with the student section, attending an Alabama football game will stick with you throughout your entire college experience at the Capstone.