Defensive coordinator Kirby Smart and five defensive players met with the media to start Monday’s schedule of events

12-28-15   MFB    Children's Hospital  Photo by Kent Gidley

12-28-15 MFB Children’s Hospital
Photo by Kent Gidley

DALLAS – The second-ranked Alabama football team worked for two hours on Monday in preparation for the Crimson Tide’s College Football Playoff Semifinal appearance against Michigan State, the team’s second in as many years. The Tide worked in shells for two hours under the roof of AT&T Stadium.

The Monday session was the Crimson Tide’s 10th of 11 total practices before for the 2015 College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on Thursday, Dec. 31. Alabama will square off with Big Ten Champions Michigan State on New Year’s Eve to earn a spot in the national championship game. The Tide and Spartans are scheduled for a 7 p.m. start on ESPN with the trio of Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit and Heather Cox calling the game.

Monday morning began with defensive coordinator Kirby Smart joining Denzel Devall, Eddie Jackson, Reggie Ragland, Jarran Reed and A’Shawn Robinson at the Omni Hotel for a meeting with the media that lasted nearly an hour. The entire team began the work day with individual meetings at the hotel before boarding the bus to AT&T Stadium for an 11 a.m. practice. The Crimson Tide then closed out the day at the Children’s Medical Center of Dallas as the team and coaches met with patients.

“When you get to visit with these children and their families, it does the body good to know that you’re going to help someone out, change sombody’s life just by being there,” said senior captain Reggie Ragland. “Hopefully by saying hello and talking to them we can make their day better, and it means a lot to me to know that I can have that kind of impact.”

Tuesday’s schedule begins with a 10 a.m. media day at AT&T Stadium that will involve the entire team and coaches. Following the media session, Alabama will practice for two hours before returning to the team hotel for meetings. In the evening, head coach Nick Saban will take part in a Cotton Bowl edition of “The Nick Saban Show” live from 6:30-8 p.m. CT inside the Hilton Anatole Atrium.

Alabama and Michigan State will meet for the second time in the storied history of the two programs. The lone matchup between the teams came in the 2011 Capital One Bowl in Orlando, Fla. The Crimson Tide came away with a 49-7 victory over the Spartans in that game.