ATLANTA, Ga. – The Tide has risen again.
In an All-Southeastern Conference College Football Playoff National Championship Game that went to overtime, Alabama beats Georgia to win its second national title in three years and fifth since 2009.
With Alabama trailing 13-0 at halftime, Crimson Tide true freshman quarterback Tua Tagobailoa replaced starting QB Jalen Hurts, turning the title game into a battle of true freshman QBs. Tagobailoa, who had not started a game all season, threw a game-winning, 41-yard touchdown pass to DeVonta Smith on Alabama’s first possession in overtime to win the game 26-23.
For the game, Tagobailoa completes 14-of-24 passes for 166 yards and three touchdowns. Hurts, who guided the Tide to last year’s national championship game, was 3-of-8 for 21 yards and no TDs vs. Georgia.
Georgia QB Jake Fromm, also a true freshman, completed 16-of-32 passes for a touchdown and two interceptions.
With the victory, Alabama head coach Nick Saban ties the legendary Paul “Bear” Bryant with six national championships.
Alabama kicker Andy Pappanastos missed a 36 yard field goal at the end of regulation that would have won the game. Georgia kicker Rodrigo Blankenship’s 51-yard field goal on the first possession of overtime gave the Bulldogs a brief 23-20 lead.