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Alabama-Clemson national title rematch is the first of its kind, but not totally unprecedented

Dabo Swinney Nick Saban
PHOTOS BY USA TODAY SPORTS

You probably know what’s coming Monday. Alabama and Clemson. National title game. Tampa. Rematch of last year’s championship.

It’s that last part that makes this year’s College Football Playoff final unique in the sport’s history.

In fact, the Crimson Tide’s showdown with the Tigers will be the first time ever that the same two teams will play each other in the national championship against each other in consecutive years with both ranked in the top two.

That’s right: In more than a century of college football bowls, there’s never before been a game quite like what Alabama-Clemson will be.

Still, it’s not totally unprecedented. On two other occasions, teams have met in consecutive bowl games in which one of them was ranked first on both occasions and thus in prime position to win a national championship.

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