Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Must-see UA sports events in fall 2023

CW / Natalie Teat
Students and fans cheering on the Alabama Women’s Soccer team in a match against Florida on October 23, 2022 at the Alabama Soccer Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

With classes starting up again this fall, Alabama sports are also beginning their 2023-24 seasons. With championship-caliber teams around every corner, it can be difficult to keep track of every player, every sport, every must-see matchup.  

 To ensure you don’t miss any crucial UA sports moments this fall, here are the home games, matches and meets that you need to see 

 Volleyball at the Crimson Tide Invitational, Aug. 25-26 

Volleyball opens its season with three matches in Foster Auditorium the weekend after classes start. The invitational is the perfect introduction to Alabama sports, especially when students pack the small but rowdy Foster Auditorium. 

 Julia Ray, a junior majoring in communicative disorders, said that the auditorium houses a great energy when it gets packed. 

 “It was really cool to see the student section really full, and it was fun when the band, cheerleaders and Big Al were there,” Ray said. “It’s loud, it’s energetic, it’s really cool to cheer on the team in the cool atmosphere and have a lot of people to cheer on the volleyball team.” 

 After a disappointing 10-20 season last year, Alabama volleyball has a lot of room to improve under second-year head coach Rashinda Reed. Ray said she’s excited to see what the program has in store.  

 “I’ve been to a lot of their home games, so it’s really cool to follow them these past two years, see how they play, see how they’ve grown each game and each year,” Ray said. “I’m just excited to see how they’ve progressed and see how they play this year against a lot of our old opponents.” 

 Soccer vs. North Carolina, Sept. 10 at 6 p.m. CT 

 Following a historic 2022 campaign involving the program’s first-ever College Cup appearance, the soccer program is jumping right back into action. Ranked No. 7 in preseason polls, the team returns 18 players, including last year’s star freshman Gianna Paul and record-breaking veteran Felicia Knox. Although the season officially started in August, the program’s first test will be North Carolina, last year’s runner-up.  

 After last year’s excitement, UA junior Bre Ciemny, a biology major, said she can’t wait to see the team’s growth.  

 “I was disappointed that they didn’t end the season how they wanted in the Final Four, by winning it all,” Ciemny said. “But I know that was a huge accomplishment and I can’t wait to see what they do this season.” 

 Although Ciemny tried to go to as many games as she could last year, she spent her favorite game of last year’s season in the car, listening to the double overtime victory against Duke that led Alabama to the Final Four. However, with all the national attention last year and a preseason national ranking, Alabama games will be broadcast on a lot more television stations as well, including ESPNU, which will air the game against North Carolina.  

 Ciemny said she’ll be attending a lot more games in Alabama Soccer Stadium, though, especially because of the “unmatched” energy. 

 “The fans bring the energy — there’s people with drum shakers, signs, everything,” Ciemny said. “There’s family players hyping up their daughters and sisters, it’s just an unmatchable energy. Everyone is oohing and aahing together as one. You just get swept up along in it.” 

  Football vs. Tennessee, Oct. 21 

 After last year’s heartbreaking loss in Neyland Stadium, hosting the Third Saturday in October in Bryant-Denny Stadium this year will be unlike any other Alabama-Tennessee rivalry matchup of this century. Forget the quarterback battle, the new offensive and defensive coordinators, and even a return to the national championship — nothing will get Alabama fans out of their funk more than seeing the cigar smoke settle over Tuscaloosa on Oct. 21. 

 Instead of cigar smoke last year, UA senior and Million Dollar Band member Alyssa Poe remembers something quite different in the air.  

 “There was a concrete tension in the air throughout the whole game,” Poe said. “There was excitement, but also this nervousness because we knew that Tennessee was going to be hard to beat this year, but we weren’t expecting what we found at the game.” 

 Poe remembers the sea of orange at Neyland Stadium, the Tennessee fans cursing at the band, and planning how to leave once it became clear that the goalposts were coming down.  

 She said that this year it will be a relief to play the rematch on home turf, and it’s the most anticipated game of the season.  

 “Everyone feels like we have so much to prove, so that game is our way of taking back some of the pride that we have in our team, not that we lost the pride this past season, but knowing we can beat Tennessee again and feel the security again will give people hope in our team than they have in the last couple years,” Poe said. “It will be the game to be at this season.”  

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