Alabama head coach Nick Saban and Florida head coach Jim McElwain pose for a photo with the trophy at the press conference for the Southeastern Conference Championship NCAA college football game, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Butch Dill) Last Modified: Friday, December 2, 2016 at 11:55 p.m.
ATLANTA — Given the apparent disparity in talent between the two sides, this would seem like a less than ideal matchup for such an historic event.
Who: No. 1 Alabama (12-0) vs. No. 15 Florida (8-3)
When: 4 p.m.
Where: Georgia Dome, Atlanta
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And yet, it’s perfect.
Florida vs. Alabama.
Potential rout aside, what better way to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the SEC Championship Game than having the initial two teams back together to play again for the league title?
These are the two schools that launched Roy Kramer’s dream on a cold, gray, windy day in Birmingham, Ala., in 1992. At the time, no one knew where this new format would lead, but over time, it has changed the landscape of college football.
“This is a special, special occasion, playing in the 25th anniversary game, the two teams that have been in it the most,” Florida coach Jim McElwain said. “I think that’s pretty fitting.”
The Gators and Tide have played a significant role in the history of the game. They played in the first three SEC Championship Games — the first two in Birmingham’s Legion Field — and now will be going head-to-head today for a record ninth time.There’s just something special about Florida vs. Alabama in the SEC Championship Game, even if one happens to be an almost four-touchdown underdog, which the Gators are.“I think both programs have great tradition,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “They certainly have tremendous tradition and lots of success at the University of Florida. They’ve been probably one of the more dominant teams in the East.“Through the years, Alabama has pretty significant tradition, too. We feel fortunate that our team has been able to do the things that they need to do this particular year to get in the game.” Unfortunately, this article is either no longer in our system or is in a different location.To find additional or related content, you can check out latest articles or use our site search function above.Thank you.