(Atlanta, GA) Monday night coach Nick Saban and his Crimson Tide claimed their sixth NCAA National football championship and Alabamas fifth in nine years with Saban as the head coach. The 26-23 win in overtime over Georgia came in dramatic fashion as quarterback Tua Tagovailoa connected with another freshman wide receiver DeVonta Smith on a 41 yard TD pass for the game-winning score. Tagovailoa a true freshman took over the reins under center in the second half replacing starting quarterback Jalen Hurts, who had struggled to get the Bama offense on track in the first half. Hurts had only rushed for 47 yards and only 21 yards passing before the tide went into the locker room down 13-0.
Tua Tagovailoa started the title game as a backup.
He ended it as a legend. pic.twitter.com/YJIKxPtctG
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 9, 2018
In the second half, Tagovailoa was dynamite and blew up the Georgia Bulldogs hopes of getting a national title. The Alabama back up QB passed for 166 yards and 3 TDs in the half (including the game-winner in overtime) taking advantage of 9 different receivers. He led the Tide come back to tie the game at the end of regulation at 20-20.
In the overtime the Bulldogs appeared to have the inside track on the national title after the Georgia kicker known as “Hot Rod” Rodrigo Blakenship nailed a 51 yard field goal. The field goal was the saving grace for coach Kirby Smart and the home team, because a play earlier his QB Jake Fromm was sacked for a 13 yard loss by Alabama Linebacker Terrell Lewis. Then it was time for the Tide to get their turn at a shot to score. The Tide had the ball first down and 10 at the Bulldog 25 yard line and as Tagovailoa took the snap and dropped back to pass he was dropped for a 16 yard loss. Then on the very next play he dropped back to pass again and connected with smith who was streaking to the end for the game winner.
— Alabama Football (@AlabamaFTBL) January 9, 2018
Trevin A Jones
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