In a season significantly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, the Crimson Tide were able to come away with the first championship of 2021 at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla and finish their season undefeated.
The victory makes it 14 consecutive wins for Alabama. The Crimson Tide haven’t lost since Nov. 30, 2019, in the SEC Championship game.
The first half of the game was all about Crimson Tide wide receiver Devonta Smith.
Smith had 12 catches for 215 yards with three touchdowns. He was making Ohio State defenders miss left and right and was seemingly unstoppable.
His night ended early when he injured is right hand on Alabama’s first drive of the third quarter. He left the game and did not return. He showed back up on the sideline late in the fourth quarter in a sweatsuit and his hand completely bandaged up.
Mac Jones put together a game for the ages as well.
Jones was 36-for-45 with 464 passing yards and five touchdown passes. He surpassed Joe Burrow’s national championship performance from last season. Burrow had 463 passing yards with five touchdown passes.
On the ground, Najee Harris had 79 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns. He also had seven catches for 79 yards and a touchdown.
Slade Bolden had a touchdown catch in the second half. It was his first collegiate touchdown catch.
Ohio State fought hard all-season long but just came up short.
Justin Fields was beat up by the Crimson Tide defense all night. He finished 17-for-33 with 194 passing yards and a touchdown. He also led the team in rushing with 67 yards.
Master Teague III rushed for 65 yards and two touchdowns. Trey Sermon left early in the game with a labrum injury. He was taken to the hospital as a precaution and did not return.
Buckeyes receiver Garrett Wilson had the lone touchdown catch. He finished with three catches for 50 yards. Chris Olave led Ohio State with eight catches for 69 yards.
The Buckeyes wrapped up their season with a Big Ten Championship and one loss.
Nick Saban’s legendary college football legacy only grows after the win. It’s Saban’s seventh national championship and sixth as Alabama head coach. He won one during the 2003 season with LSU and won his first with Alabama in 2009 after he returned to college football after a stint with the Miami Dolphins.
Alabama won its first national title during the College Football Playoff era during the 2015 season, beating Clemson, 45-40. The team defeated Georgia in the only overtime game in the final, 26-23. It’s their 18th title in school history.
The Crimson Tide are likely to lose a bunch of key players to the professional ranks. They will look to get back into title contention in 2021.
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