Crimson Tide and Sooners to meet for the sixth time in the history of the two storied programs
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide will face off with the No. 4 Oklahoma Sooners in the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Capital One Orange Bowl at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla., on Dec. 29.
The Crimson Tide and Sooners will meet for the sixth time in the history of the series that dates back to 1963. The Sooners own the series advantage, 1-3-1, and came away with a 45-31 victory in the most-recent matchup between the teams in the 2014 College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans.
“They’re (Oklahoma’s offense) a pretty dynamic group,” said Alabama head coach Nick Saban. “They’ve got a lot of weapons. They make a lot of explosive plays. We played against him (Kyler Murray) a little bit when he was at A&M, and he is a very dynamic guy in terms of his athletic ability, his quickness, his ability to make plays with his feet, and he’s turned into a really, really efficient passer, who has good skill guys to make good plays to go along with the rest of their weapons.”
Alabama is making its ninth Capital One Orange Bowl appearance, holding a 4-4 all-time record. Two of the Tide’s national championship teams played in the Orange Bowl with UA’s 1964 championship team falling to Texas, 21-17, on Jan. 1 1965, while the 1965 national champions defeated Nebraska, 39-28, in the Jan. 1, 1966 contest. Alabama also appeared in one BCS National Championship Game in Miami, capturing its 15th national title with a 42-14 win over Notre Dame following the 2012 season.
The winner of the matchup between Alabama and Oklahoma will meet the winner of the contest matching the No. 2 Clemson Tigers and the No. 3 Notre Dame Fighting Irish, who will play in the CFP Semifinal Game at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, on Dec. 29. The 2019 CFP National Championship Game is scheduled for Monday, Jan. 7 at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif.
Saban is 10-4 in postseason games at Alabama, earning wins over Georgia (2018 CFP National Championship Game), Clemson (2017 CFP Semifinal at the Allstate Sugar Bowl and the 2016 CFP National Championship Game), Washington (2016 CFP Semifinal Game at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl), Michigan State (2015 CFP Semifinal Game at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic), Notre Dame (2013 BCS National Championship Game at the Orange Bowl), LSU (2012 BCS National Championship Game at the Allstate Sugar Bowl), Michigan State (2011 Capital One Bowl), Texas (2010 BCS National Championship Game at the Rose Bowl) and Colorado (2007 Independence Bowl). The Tide’s four losses came against Clemson (2017 CFP National Championship Game), Ohio State (2015 CFP Semifinal at the Allstate Sugar Bowl), Oklahoma (2014 Allstate Sugar Bowl) and Utah (2009 Allstate Sugar Bowl).
Since its inception in 2014, Alabama is the only team to appear in all five College Football Playoffs and has appeared in the top five of every poll put out by the selection committee over the last five seasons.