For the third year running, Alabama and Clemson meet in the College Football Playoff, and if history is any indication, fans are in for a thriller.
The debate over the playoff committee’s decision to select Alabama ahead of Ohio State still hasn’t died down, but there’s no doubting the Tide’s strength: Alabama brings unmatched playoff pedigree, plus a dominant run game and an elite defense that will have had a month to recover following an Iron Bowl loss to Auburn. Clemson, meanwhile, is the reigning national champion and just demolished a one-loss Miami team 38-3 in the ACC Championship.
It’s unlikely that anyone has forgotten the teams’ meetings in the past two title games: Alabama outlasted Clemson 45-40 after the 2015 season, led by 158 rushing yards and three touchdowns from Derrick Henry, before the Tigers turned the tables last year in a 35-31 epic that wasn’t decided until Deshaun Watson completed a game-winning touchdown pass to Hunter Renfrow with one second left.
The early line has Alabama favored by 1.5 points.
HOW TO WATCH
Who: No. 1 Clemson vs. No. 4 Alabama
When: 8:45 p.m. ET/7:45 p.m. CT on Monday, January 1
Where: Superdome in New Orleans
Live stream: WatchESPN.com or WatchESPN app
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