Alabama and Florida State will begin the season in earnest with a highly anticipated match-up in Atlanta on Labor Day weekend. The Crimson Tide and Seminoles are ranked as the No. 1 and No. 2 teams in some order by the vast majority of publications and, as you may expect, that will be a pivotal contest for College Football Playoff positioning.
On the bright side for Nick Saban and the Tide, Mark Ross of Athlon Sports projects that Alabama will be victorious in the opener. However, the same prediction-based article indicates that the Crimson Tide will (somehow) lose two additional games, with one coming against a seven-loss team from the 2016 season.
The Iron Bowl notwithstanding, don’t sleep on the matchup with Mississippi State just two weeks prior. Alabama will have just played LSU while the Bulldogs figure to have a much easier lead-in against UMass. Dual-threat quarterbacks have given Nick Saban’s defense fits in recent seasons (see Deshaun Watson), and Mississippi State has one of the best in the nation in Nick Fitzgerald.
Of course, it is not impossible to think that Alabama could lose to Auburn and that seven-loss team in Mississippi State. However, it seems counter-intuitive (at the very least) to suggest that Alabama would be good enough to win a neutral-site game against Florida State while also dropping two other contests.
Alas, bold predictions (or outlandish ones) are hardly new and this may qualify.