Alabama gets routed by Clemson, 44-16By Amber Lee
Part IV of the Clemson vs. Alabama saga did not contain much drama, as the Tigers embarrassed the Crimson Tide, 44-16.
— Clemson Football (@ClemsonFB) January 8, 2019
Alabama (14-1) had never lost by more than 14 points under Nick Saban, but Clemson (15-0) dominated in every facet of the game, seizing the lead in the second quarter and never looking back.
Clemson claimed its third national title in school history after previously winning in 1981 and 2016. The Tigers have now matched Alabama with two head-to-head wins in the last four years.
Tigers freshman quarterback Trevor Lawrence rose to the occasion on the big stage, shaking off a slow start to pass for 347 yards and three touchdowns. Fellow freshman Justyn Ross made a couple of highlight-reel catches and finished with six receptions for 153 yards.
One of the biggest sequences of the game for the Tigers came in the third quarter when the Crimson Tide failed to convert a fake field goal and Clemson responded with a 74-yard touchdown on just three plays. Alabama then turned the ball over on downs in the red zone on the following possession.
Heisman Trophy runner-up Tua Tagovailoa wasn’t himself, passing for 295 yards and two touchdowns, but throwing two interceptions. He was also a non-factor on the ground.