NEW ORLEANS, LA (WAFF) - Top-ranked Alabama and fourth-ranked Ohio State, two tradition-rich schools, meet in about 48 hours in the Sugar Bowl and the first ever College Football Semi-finals.
Alabama fans started to 'Roll Tide' into New Orleans early this week, the excitement level mounting with each passing hour. With the fans, it's expected to really pick up Wednesday, with the Pep Rally and Fan Fest, but for the players, the excitement is already at a maximum as they are ready to play the game.
The day started early Tuesday for the top-ranked Tide as Alabama was first to go through Sugar Bowl Media Days.
This year's fun is inside the SuperDome. This day of Q&A marks the only time all season that every player on the Alabama roster is available to talk to the media.
One of the biggest topics is Nick Saban vs. Urban Meyer; in a way, the two have played in a semi-final type of game twice before. Both were able to bring out their best "coach-speak" to downplay the match-up.
"It was no surprise to me that he (Meyer) got back into coaching at a very good institution," Saban said. "Ohio State... has a very good tradition, and it wouldn't take him long to establish one of the top programs in the country."
"There is a history between Coach Saban and myself," Meyer added. "I made a point to our players, I hope they say that about us, every phase is on-point."
Players told us they're ready to start hitting someone other than teammates - so much so, that Monday's practice got a little lively.
"It got wild a couple of times; we're just ready to play another team," said defensive back Landon Collins.
Following their chat with the media, the Alabama squad worked out for the last time before the big game. Wednesday they will have a walkthrough and take the official Sugar Bowl team photo before game time.
Alabama takes on Ohio State Thursday at 11 a.m. on ESPN2.