The Alabama Crimson Tide rallied from a 13 point deficit to come back and defeat the UGA Bulldogs 26-23 in overtime, earning coach Nick Saban his sixth national championship
Georgia led Alabama 13-0 entering the second half when Saban replaced starting quarterback Jalen Hurt with freshman passer Tua Tagovailoa.
Tagovailoa turned the game around for the Crimson Tide, throwing for three touchdowns, including the game winning pass in overtime.
“You have to give Georgia a lot of credit,” Saban said. “They really played well. But I’m so proud of our players for the way they came back.”
The Bulldogs scored the opening points of the contest thanks to a pair of Rodrigo Blankenship field goals in the second quarter.
Moments before the first half closed, UGA’s Mecole Hardman scored the first touchdown of the evening on a goal line rush, giving the Bulldogs a 13-0 edge at half.
But Georgia’s offense slowed after the first half, scoring only 10 points the rest of the game compared to Alabama’s 26.
The Crimson Tide had a chance to put the game away with seconds remaining in regulation, but a missed field goal pushed the game into overtime.
UGA must now bid farewell to a number of star players, including the dynamic running back combo of Nick Chubb and Sony Michel. Both players are projected to be top prospects in the upcoming NFL Draft.
The duo combined for the most rushing yards in NCAA history over the course of their college careers.
"These two young men sitting next to me, they meant more to Georgia than yards," Smart said in reference to Chubb and Michel. "A lot of heart and soul."
Before the game, President Trump took the field for the national anthem. Fans greeted him with a mix of cheers and boos. Faint chants of “veto Trump” could be heard in the upper sections of the stadium.