Some would say the sequel can never be better than the original. Last year’s national champion game between Clemson and Alabama was a game for the ages. A 45-40 win for Alabama that proved once again there college football best, but it also proved that Clemson can hang with Alabama.
That close loss motivated Clemson to come back stronger, hungrier, and better than before this season. All season long they fought for an opportunity to get back to national championship game and have another shot at Alabama.
They got that opportunity by decimating Ohio State 31-0 in the Fiesta Bowl. That set up a rematch and sequel with everything on the line.
Clemson and Alabama certainly proved tonight that the sequel can be just as good, if not better than the original. The lead changed hands four times in the fourth quarter. This championship game came right down to the wire. This time Clemson wins a 35-31 thriller on a game winning touchdown from Watson to Hunter Renfrow with 1 second remaining; dethroning Alabama and avenging last years loss.
This win tonight was a statement win for the Clemson football program and QB Deshaun Watson. It invoked memories of Vince Young leading Texas to an upset win over USC in the 2006 Rose Bowl. A QB driven by not winning the Heisman Trophy, plays the game of his life, and single handily wills his team to victory. Sounds familiar?
It was said that in order for Clemson to win and have a shot against the Alabama Dynasty, Watson would have to have a Vince Young like moment. Boy did he ever. 420 yards, 3 touchdowns, include the game winner. Watson played with so much poise and confidence in this title game. Every time Clemson got down he rallied them back. Watson became the first Heisman runner up to win a national championship since who else, Vince Young.
The National Championship is coming back home to Death Valley. Congrats to Coach Dabo, Deshaun, and the entire Clemson football team and Alumni. This win was a long time in the making for a football program that hadn’t seen much success. As they say, revenge is a dish best served cold.