The Iron Bowl between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Auburn Tigers has long been regarded as one of the best rivalries in college football. The two SEC foes have produced some of the sport's most memorable games and will be back in action for the 86th time on Saturday.
The 2021 matchup doesn't bring as much intrigue as usual due to the apparent disparity between the two programs this year. No. 3 Alabama comes into the game at 10-1 on the cusp of a College Football Playoff appearance, while Auburn currently sits at 6-5, in a disappointing tie for fifth in the SEC West.
The game might not look favorable on paper for the Tigers, but one rabid fan of the program is looking forward to the matchup: former Auburn star and basketball Hall of Famer Charles Barkley.
Barkley, who's long been outspoken about his support for his old school shared Wednesday that he's excited for the 2021 Iron Bowl. He told Paul Finebaum that if his Auburn Tigers could knock the Crimson Tide out of the playoff picture, it would make his day.
"I’m looking forward to the game,” Barkley
Charles Barkley came on the show to give his thoughts on this years Iron Bowl. Thoughts? pic.twitter.com/GuIuyteMBo
— Paul Finebaum (@finebaum) November 24, 2021
">said on The Paul Finebaum Show Wednesday. “If we can ruin Alabama’s season, we might as well be 12-0 because if we can ruin their season, it would be awesome — plain and simple.”
Although crazier things have happened in the Iron Bowl, Barkley might be hard-pressed to get his wish in 2021. Auburn enters the game as a 19.5-point underdog and will have to slow down a talented Alabama offense to get the win.
Whether the Tigers can pull off the upset or not, the Iron Bowl is always one of the must-watch rivalries of the final regular season weekend. This year should be no different.
Kickoff between Auburn and Alabama is scheduled for Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET. The game will air on CBS.