TWELVE months after the Crimson Tide defeated the Tigers to claim the National Championship, is there anyone more deserving of a chance to knock off this dominant Alabama squad than Clemson? For the first time in college football history the National Championship Game will be rematch of the previous season with #2 Clemson (13-1) facing #1 Alabama (14-0) in Tampa for the title. The third College Football Playoff deserves to come down to this, the two best teams all year facing off in a winner take all scenario. Who get’s the win?
Why Clemson Will Win
THEY have Desaun Watson. Arguably the best player in this game, the Tigers QB has the tools and skills to pick apart this dominant defense and put a winning score on the board. A healthy receiving corp this year is led by star wideout Mike Williams, who missed last years game and is perhaps the best receiver in the country. If Alabama force Watson to sit inside the pocket and pass it could be his downfall, but if Watson is given room to run, watch out. Their athletic defensive front can also help stop the dominant Crimson Tide run attack too, which can cause issues for Nick Saban’s group.
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Why Alabama Will Win
THE defensive unit Alabama has put on the field this season is the most dominant group in all of college football. They have not only stifled team’s offenses on way to the National Championship Game, but they have the ability to score themselves, easing the pressure on their offense. Despite the change of offensive coordinators mid-week, the same guys will be out on the field and are well drilled and poised enough to know their job and what needs to be done. If the defense can put a score on the board early that will help calm the nerves of their freshman quarterback Jalen Hurts. Either way he will have to be at his best if they are going to repeat as champs.
Prediction: Alabama 33 – Clemson 27
IT boils down to Alabama’s defense vs. Clemson’s offense and which one will reign supreme? While all the talk is behind the Tigers and their star QB leading them to a rematch against the Crimson Tide, they can’t pull the win out here. Alabama’s defense is the best group in the country for a reason, rivalling some NFL defensive line-ups. If they force Watson into throwing turnovers their way, it could be an expensive mistake for Clemson. Expect another classic similar to last year with Bama raising the trophy for a 2nd consecutive year
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