Tigers or Tide?

College Football National Championship Game Preview

Alabama and Clemson played a classic for the National Championship. Clemson won 35-31.

Alabama and Clemson played a classic for the National Championship. Clemson won 35-31.

Sean Traynor, Staff Writer

TAMPA, FL– A rematch of last year’s National Championship Game is going to be the one for the books. The Clemson Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide will duel it out on Monday January 9, for the second season in a row. The two teams got here by winning their bowl games last week on New Year’s Eve. Clemson shutout Ohio State 31-0, and Alabama beat Washington 24-7.

Clemson Quarterback Deshaun Watson was a Heisman Trophy candidate in this year’s race. Even though Watson did not win the Heisman, he has still put up some impressive numbers. This season, Watson threw for 4,173 yards with 38 touchdowns and only 17 interceptions. Even though Watson is a quarterback, he was the leading rusher on the Clemson offense with 586 yards.

“What Dabo did with his program there…they’re one of the best college football teams in the country. They do an outstanding job. I can’t tell you how much respect we have for what they do,” said Alabama head coach, Nick Saban about Clemson’s head coach Dabo Swinney.

Alabama’s defense has done most of the work this season. The defense is ranked first in the nation in fewest points allowed with 11.8 and fewest yards per game with only allowing 248. Alabma’s defense has only allowed 61 points in the second half, and their offense is putting up 266 points in the second half as well.

“He’s changed college football. He has really been a pioneer and has changed a lot of the way things are done in college football,” said Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said about Alabama’s head coach Nick Saban.

The record between these two teams is 13-3, with Alabama on a 13 game winning streak after Clemson won the first three meetings between the two. Alabama has 16 National Championships and is looking for its 17th in their football program’s history. Clemson, with only one National Championship win, are looking for their second. The last time the Tigers won a National Championship was 1981.

Clemson won the National Championship by a final score of 35-31. Deshaun Watson connected with Hunter Renfrow on a short touchdown pass in the game’s final seconds to seal the victory and claim Clemson’s first National Championship since 1981. Watson was named the game’s Most Outstanding Player.