After a college football season where there were limited fans in the stands due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Alabama Crimson Tide is looking to have its stadium full next season. Athletic director Greg Byrne went to Twitter to announce Bryant-Denny Stadium will be at full capacity for its home games next fall. Byrne tweeted the news after the school announced it would go back to in-person instruction later this year.
"With this announcement, we've received a number of questions regarding capacity at Bryant-Denny for [Alabama Football] in 2021, the tweet stated. "We are moving forward with plans to have a full stadium in the fall and will monitor medical guidelines as we have all along." According to ESPN, Alabama reduced its capacity to 20% last season, but infections have dropped significantly lately due to COVID-19 vaccines being rolled out. Alabama is scheduled to have seven home games in 2021. Their home opener will be on Sept. 11 against Mercer, and Bryant-Denny Stadium has a capacity of 100,077.
Alabama fans are ready to cheer on the Crimson Tide in a full stadium. Last year, the team won the National Championship by defeating Ohio State in the College Football Playoff National Championship game in January. Since Nick Saban took over as Alabama's head coach in 2009, the Crimson Tide have won six national titles while playing in a total of eight.
"I think the game was actually sort of a reflection of the year in terms of the extraordinary circumstances that we had and the extraordinary job our players and coaching staff, everybody did making adaptations to those things, which is ability to adapt is probably a real key to being successful, especially in times like these," Saban said after the game against Ohio State. One of the big reasons Alabama had success in 2020 was the play of wide receiver Devonta Smith who won the Heisman Trophy in December. For the season, Smith caught 117 passes for 1,856 yards and 23 touchdowns.
"Journey has been great," Smith said. "Last night meant a lot to me. Just everything that I came back for I've done and more. It's just truly a blessing." Alabama will continue to be a top team in college football as his contract runs through the 2026 season.