Sports to Watch in the Fall


CW/Natalie Teat

Alabama soccer player Felicia Knox (#8) protects the ball in a match against the University of Florida in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Ivan Pelley, Contributing Writer

The Crimson Tide. Roll tide. Bama. These phrases all conjure up images of a single team: Alabama football. The University of Alabama has 18 national titles in football, which is among the most in the nation.  

As the fall semester quickly approaches, however, no fan should turn a blind eye to the other fall sports at the University, among them soccer and volleyball. 


Alabama’s soccer team has achieved great success over the course of the past year. Under head coach Wes Hart, the team saw a national tournament run that ended in a Final Four defeat to No. 1 UCLA. With playoff experience under its belt, the team is looking forward to next season, especially with standout freshman star Gianna Paul entering her sophomore season and award-winning Hart having recently inked a contract extension.  

The University of Alabama is a football school, now by both the American and the European meaning of the word. With free admission, the Alabama Soccer Stadium is a great place for any student to catch a fall game. 

Last season’s star forward Riley Mattingly Parker said that the atmosphere is unmatched. 

“In my biased opinion, we’ve got the best fans in the nation,” Parker said after the SEC semifinal match against Vanderbilt on Nov. 3.  


Aside from soccer, the other immediate draw for sports fans in the fall semester is the Crimson Tide’s volleyball team. Last year, the team ended the season with a record of 10-20, but many of the losses came while the team was playing away from home. The atmosphere in Tuscaloosa made all the difference: The Tide finished with a 6-6 record at home. 

Seeing a match in Foster Auditorium is a must because, as expected, Alabama sports fans show up in force for any team the school has. What’s more, the team’s future is looking bright. This past season saw freshman Micah Gryniewicz go down with an injury early on, but when she did play, she was exceptional.  

Head coach Rashinda Reed said Gryniewicz helps form a great atmosphere in Foster Auditorium. 

She’s truly starting to create a really dynamic culture on the bench which we’re talking about with establishing a new identity for Alabama,” Reed said in December.  

Swim and Dive 

Alabama’s swim and dive team boasts yet another roster filled to the brim with talent. As the year wrapped up, 11 members of the Crimson Tide’s swim and dive team (men and women) were awarded All-SEC honors, and 16 received All-American recognitions. Multiple swimmers also received the national title in their individual competition. It’s rare to find that much talent at a single school. 

Cross Country 

In recent months, Alabama’s cross country and track team has had a penchant for record breaking. Over the course of the past season, multiple athletes have broken old team records in events ranging from the hammer to the 200-meter. With such momentum now, the odds are solid that any spectator has a chance at seeing history be made, which is not something that every college fan can say.  

Both incoming freshmen eagerly looking forward to in-person Alabama sports and returning fans who want to branch out from Saturdays at Bryant-Denny Stadium have plenty of options at the Capstone. The Crimson Tide has always been known for its passionate fan base, and being a part of that is something special. In the world of Alabama Athletics, any team is worth watching.