College Football Playoff Championship Recap: Clemson Upsets Alabama 35-31
Deshaun Watson threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Hunter Renfrow with a second left to play, and Clemson rallied to upset Alabama, 35-31, to win the College Football Playoff Championship in Tampa on Monday night. The victory gave the Tigers the program’s first national championship since 1981.
Watson threw for 420 yards and three touchdowns, leading Clemson to 21 fourth quarter-points and an improbable victory over the seemingly unbeatable Crimson Tide. Coming into the game, Alabama had only yielded 32 fourth quarter points all season.
Wayne Gallman’s 1-yard touchdown run with 4:38 left gave the Tigers their first lead of the game, 28-24.
The Tide rallied, surging ahead 31-28 on Jalen Hurts 30-yard touchdown run with 2:07 to play.
Thanks to Watson, Clemson came back and won the matchup they lost last January. The loss snapped a 26-game win streak for Alabama.
Renfrow caught 10 passes for 92 yards and two scores for the Tigers. Teammates Mike Williams (8/94), Jordan Leggett (7/95) and Deon Cain (5/94) each had 90-plus yards receiving against the formerly impenetrable Tide defense.
Hurts finished with 131 yards passing, with a touchdown. He also ran for 63 yards and the late score.
‘Bama’s O.J. Howard caught four passes for 106 yards, with a 68-yard touchdown in the third quarter.