It's Alabama-Clemson v2.0 for the FBS Championship
If there's a lingering thought now, it's this:
Maybe Penn State should've been what their conference championship said they were.
Still, would they have done 31 points better than Ohio State?
This will no doubt join a long list of questions for the ages.
Coming into the 2016 playoffs, only one of the four semi-finals was decided by less than 20 points. This year's two win-&-covers proved no exception.
Yes, an argument can be made that the Alabama-Washington game could've been closer, but that would've been assuming the Huskies played virtually error-free football. And even then, could've been closer is the operative term.
Conversely, Alabama can make mistakes -- they actually do, every now and then -- and recover from them. Which they did en route to a 24-7 victory:
The Tide's two heroes were RB Bo Scarborough and their defense. Scarborough posted an impressive stat line of 180 yards and two touchdowns, including that amazing 68-yard bulldoze-&-dash.
With only one more game to go in their quest for a perfect season and another title, Alabama's continued to show they can do things that others just can't match.
Will the exception be Clemson?
The Tigers took a rousing run at it in last year's championship game, which was well and truly worth the hype:
If dealing Ohio State its first whitewash since Michigan did it in the Big House back in 1993 was any indication, Clemson is primed for another go at it.
Frankly, this was the Buckeyes all afternoon:
The Ohio State offense struggled from the very beginning.
Dudes failed to produce points on an early Deshawn Watson interception deep in Tigers territory. Kicker Tyler Durbin, who also missed important field goals against Michigan, missed two field goals in the first quarter, which were his only two attempts of the night.
After that ... well ... watermelons.
To be fair to Meyer, he's only lost six times in his time as Buckeyes coach.
So, it's come down to this:
- A resilient club that -- in the regular season -- dodged more bullets than Neo ...
- Against ...
The Tigers have hit full stride now that the rubber's meeting the road. The Tide's been in running hot all season.
Through all the foibles of Selection Committees and whatever else, these are the two teams that deserve to be here.