Season opener between FSU and Alabama is officially sold out

Ryan S. Clark, Lead Beat Writer

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You may have heard. Florida State and Alabama are playing each other in Atlanta to open the 2017 season.

And if you didn't already purchase a ticket, you can still enjoy the battle between two of college football's biggest programs. It'll just have to be the comfort from home or a sports bar.

Organizers from the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game announced Friday the FSU-Alabama game is officially sold out of tickets. The news comes two months before the game will be played Sept. 2 in the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

"“We’re calling this game the G.O.A.T. -- the Greatest Opener of All Time -- because of the projected rankings, the dominance of these two programs and the fact that this is the toughest ticket I have seen in my 20 years in college football,” said Gary Stokan, who is the CEO and president of Peach Bowl, Inc in a release. “To possibly have No. 1 against No. 2 in the first game of the season is a credit to the programs that Nick Saban and Jimbo Fisher have built and their willingness to play this game shows their desire to compete at the highest level.”

Rankings from outlets like The Associated Press will be released as the season draws closer. In the mean time, it's expected the game between the Crimson Tide and Seminoles will be a contest between two teams which are at least in the Top 3.

The Seminoles finished 10-3 last season and reached a BCS and/or New Year's Six game for the fifth straight season. FSU won the Orange Bowl last season with a thrilling 33-32 win over Michigan.

The Crimson Tide finished 14-1 in 2016 and also played in a BCS and/or New Year's Six game for a sixth consecutive year. Alabama won its College Football Playoff semifinal over Washington and advanced to the CFP title game where it lost, 35-31, to Clemson.

FSU and Alabama have played four times with the Crimson Tide holding a 2-1-1 series edge. The series started in 1965 and the most recent meeting between the two teams came when the Seminoles took a 21-14 win in 2007.

It's the ninth time in 12 seasons the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game has sold out, the release said. The game itself averages 67,645 fans and has an average payout of $4.7 million, according to the game's organizers. More than 47.4 million viewers have watched the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game since its inception in 2008.

“We knew this was going to be a special game," said Percy Vaughn, who is the Peach Bowl Inc. chairman. "But I’m not sure we fully expected it to reach historic levels like this."


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