No. 1 Alabama, the reigning national champions and the school that has won two of the past three titles, hosts Louisville to open the 2018 regular season on Saturday night in Tuscaloosa.
The game is scheduled to start at 8:00 p.m. ET and will be broadcast nationally on ABC. If you don’t have cable or can’t get to a TV, you can still watch a live stream of the game (or DVR it) on your computer, phone or streaming device by signing up for one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services:
In addition to a Netflix-like on-demand streaming library, Hulu also offers a bundle of 50-plus live TV channels, including ABC (live in select markets, but even if it isn’t included in your market, you’ll be able to watch the game on the ESPN digital platforms with your Hulu credentials).
You can sign up for “Hulu with Live TV” right here, and if ABC is live in your market, you can then watch a live stream of the game on your computer via the Hulu website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Hulu app. If ABC isn’t live in your market, scroll down to the “ESPN Platforms” section to see where you can watch.
If you can’t watch live, “Hulu with Live TV” also comes with 50 hours of Cloud DVR storage (with the ability to upgrade to “Enhanced Cloud DVR,” which gives you 200 hours of DVR space and the ability to fast forward through commercials).
Although ABC isn’t technically part of the Sling TV package, you can sign up for a free 7-day trial of the “Sling Orange” bundle, which includes ESPN3, and you’ll then be able to watch a live stream of the game on the ESPN digital platforms (see next section).
You can watch a live stream of the game on your computer via ESPN.com, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the ESPN app. Games on ABC (labeled as ESPN3) can be watched for free without cable if you have a participating internet service provider (ISP), but even if you don’t have a participating ISP, you can still sign use your Hulu or Sling TV (or other cable TV) credentials to sign in and watch the game on the ESPN digital platforms.
The major story this season is not only head coach Nick Saban and beginning his quest for an unprecedented seventh career national championship, but also the quarterback who will lead the Crimson Tide this season.
Jalen Hurts has been entrenched as the team’s starter since 2016, and has gone 26-2 overall during that timeframe. Hurts’ ability has given Alabama a duel-threat option, but his passing ability has always been called into question.
Against Georgia in the National Championship Game back in January, Saban, shockingly, benched his 26-2 starter at halftime because of a lethargic offense for backup and Hawaiian Tua Tagovailoa. Tagovailoa proceeded to finish 14-for-24 with 166 yards, three tocuhowns and an interception. His best throw, which clinched the Crimson Tide their fifth national championship since 2009, was a 41-yard on-the-mark strike to Devonta Smith on 2nd and 26:
Many Alabama fans are calling for Tagovailoa to start the season after his historic title game magic, but it is more likely Saban uses both throughout the season.
Redshirt sophomore Jawon Pass has big shoes to fill, as 2016 Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson has moved on to the NFL after being drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in May.
Pass made five appearances in 2007, and completed two-thirds of his passes for 238 yards and two touchdowns. The Cardinals’ offense returns most of their starts from last season, but the most important for Pass will be senior wide receiver Jaylen Smith.
Smith boasts a terrific combination of size (6-foot-4) and athleticism that will make him an intriguing NFL prospect. After compiling a 60-980-7 line last season, Smith will have the opportunity to join multiple NFL team radars this season.