Coach Kirby Smart walks off the field followning stunning loss to Alabama at the National Championship game. (Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)15
Fans wait outside the stadium prior to the game between the Georgia Bulldogs and the Alabama Crimson Tide in the CFP National Championship presented by AT&T at Mercedes-Benz Stadium (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)8
U.S. President Donald Trump on field during the national anthem prior to the CFP National Championship presented by AT&T between the Georgia Bulldogs and the Alabama Crimson Tide at Mercedes-Benz Stadium (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)13
A general view of the stadium during the second half between the Georgia Bulldogs and the Alabama Crimson Tide in the CFP National Championship game.41
An Georgia Bulldogs fan in the stands reacts during the fourth quarter against the Alabama Crimson Tide in the CFP National Championship presented by AT&T at Mercedes-Benz Stadium (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)123
Rapper Kendrick Lamar performs during half time during 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship Game at Centennial Olympic Park on January 8, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. Photo: Paras Griffin, Getty Images3
ATLANTA - Georgia Bulldogs fans are recovering from a roller coaster ride of a football game, which ended in a loss to the University of Alabama for the National Championship.
Tua Tagovailoa threw a 41-yard touchdown to DeVonta Smith to give No. 4 Alabama a 26-23 overtime victory against No. 3 Georgia to win the College Football Playoff National Championship Monday night.
We will have Team 2 Coverage of the game on Channel 2 Action News at Noon.
Tagovailoa entered the game at halftime, replacing a struggling Jalen Hurts, and threw three touchdown passes, including the game-ender to give the Crimson Tide its fifth national championship since 2009 under coach Nick Saban.
After Alabama kicker Andy Pappanastos missed a 37-yard field goal that would have won it for the Tide (13-1) in the final seconds of regulation, Georgia (13-2) took the lead with a 51-yard field goal from Rodrigo Blankenship in overtime.
Tagovailoa took a terrible sack on Alabama's first play of overtime, losing 16 yards. On the next play he found Smith, another freshman, streaking down the sideline and hit him in stride for the national championship.
This game will be remembered for Saban's decision to change quarterbacks trailing 13-0.
"I just thought we had to throw the ball, and I felt he could do it better, and he did," Saban said. "He did a good job, made some plays in the passing game. Just a great win. I'm so happy for Alabama fans. Great for our players. Unbelievable."
Saban now has six major poll national championships, including one at LSU, matching the record set by the man who led Alabama's last dynasty, coach Paul Bear Bryant.
This one was nothing like the others.
The all-Southeastern Conference matchup was all Georgia in the first half before Saban pulled Hurts and went with the five-star recruit from Hawaii to start the second half.
The Tide trailed 13-0 at halftime and 20-7 in the third quarter after Georgia's freshman quarterback, Jake Fromm, hit Mecole Hardman for an 80-yard touchdown pass that had the Georgia fans feeling good about ending a national title drought that dates back to 1980.
Channel 2 Sports Director Zach Klein provided minute-by-minute updates from the game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium below:
Bama comes back with a touchdown, winning National Championship 26-23
Georgia makes field goal. Georgia up 23-20
Bama goes for a field goal and misses, game goes into overtime, tied 20-20
2:55 4th Quarter
UGA forced to kick ball, Bama retains possession at their own 35.
3:49 4th Quarter
Bama makes a touchdown, score extra point. Score tied.
3:56 4th Quarter
Bama advances the ball to 4th and 4. Timeout called
6:46 4th Quarter
Damian Harris gets the ball to the 34 yrd line.
9:24 4th Quarter
Bama makes field goal, making score 20-13
9:28 4th Quarter
After what was thought to be an interception, Alabama will retain possession and attempt the FG.
9:34 4th Quarter
Alabama RB Najee Harris with a HUGE run for the Crimson Tide setting them up in the red zone 3rd and 8.
End of 3rd quarter
Georgia has the ball on their own 13.
5:15 3rd quarter
After a Jake Fromm interception, Alabama kicks a FG. The Dawgs now lead 20-10.
6:32 34d quarter
Deandre Baker intercepts the Alabama pass and Georgia takes over on the Bama 39.
Alabama has never won a National Championship under Nick Saban when committing an offensive turnover (5 titles, 0 offensive TO's)— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
Tua was just picked off by UGA's Deandre Baker#UGA2ATL pic.twitter.com/2Etx9IHYvJ
6:52 3rd quarter
Fromm goes deep to Hardman and the Dawgs are back in front by 13!
MEEEEEEEE-COLE!!!— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
TD IS GOOD.. 80-YARDS
8:52 3rd quarter
Tagovailoa takes the Tide right down the field and into the endzone. Georgia leads 13-7.
And that's the last we'll see of Jalen Hurts tonight..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
Tua Tagovailoa leads Alabama into the endzone with a 6-yard TD to Henry Ruggs
13-7 - 8:52 left in 3rd Q pic.twitter.com/NiDC18hFbd
13:03 3rd quarter
Alabama goes to its backup quarterback to start the 2nd half and goes 3-and-out. Georgia takes over on their own 36.
3 and out to start 2nd Half for Bama..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
Still only 1 first down for Crimson Tide after opening drive
Nick Saban at a loss for words.. pic.twitter.com/J4Uy1cWYJa
Start of 3rd Quarter
Alabama starts with the ball.
Georgia leads 13-0 at the half. Alabama will receive the second half kick-off.
0:06 2nd quarter
Hardman takes it in from 1 yard out and the Dawgs lead 13-0.
End of 1st Half at Rose Bowl... 55-yard FG gives UGA momentum— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
End of 1st Half in Title Game.. Mecole Hardman TD RUN
UGA up 13-0
2 quarters away from a National Title pic.twitter.com/UcfmBGhUTu
2:14 2nd quarter
Georgia punts and Alabama takes over at their own 25. Just over 2 minutes remaining the half.
7:48 2nd quarter
Blankenship hits from 27 yards out and Georgia leads 6-0.
8:59 2nd quarter
The Dawgs are driving again after picking up another 3rd and long. 1st and Goal from the Alabama 10.
Fromm.. on 3rd and 8.. first down to Riley Ridley.. Gain of 23— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
UGA 3 of 6 on 3rd down conversions.. 2 of them have gone for 20+ yards pic.twitter.com/jqVM9k2rJW
14:14 2nd quarter
Rodrigo Blankenship cashes in from 41 yards out and the Dawgs lead 3-0.
End of 1st quarter
Georgia and Alabama are scoreless after the 1st quarter.
End of 1st Quarter here in National Championship Game— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
UGA: 64 yards - Fromm 4-9, 30 Yds, INT
BAMA: 53 yards - Hurts 2-5, 17 Yds
Missed 40-yard FG is the difference#UGA2ATL pic.twitter.com/3nWkIwMxaq
1:24 1st quarter
Georgia converts a 3rd and 20 and has the ball at the Alabama 26.
9:04 1st quarter
UGA quickly goes 3-and-out. The Dawgs have yet to run the football.
9:54 1st quarter
Alabama can't cash in on the turnover as they miss the 40-yard FG attempt. Game still scoreless and Georgia takes over on the 22.
40-yard FG wide left - No damage done on UGA turnover pic.twitter.com/APzSiVxAxg— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
13:38 1st quarter
Fromm goes deep on 3rd and long and is intercepted. Alabama takes over on their own 36.
Last 6 games.. Jake Fromm 10 TD - 1 INT— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
INT on 3rd play of National Championship game#UGA2ATL
Start of game
Georgia will receive the opening kickoff.
President Donald Trump was on the field during the National Anthem.
USA 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/EiTTGlgqYq— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 9, 2018
Both teams have entered the field.
President Donald Trump has arrived at the venue.
President is in the building..all gates open at Mercedes-Benz Stadium— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 8, 2018
Fans are starting to fill up the Mercedes-Benz Stadium
The Georgia Redcoat Marching Band is in the house!
There are large crowds already gathering outside Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Fans are encouraged to enter at gates 2,3, and 4 for quicker access. Gate 1 is a jam - All gates open at 5 for fans pic.twitter.com/QBwh6G6dgw— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 8, 2018
Channel 2 Sports Director Zach Klein is getting ready for Channel 2 Action News at 4, 5 and 6.
View for the evening.... pic.twitter.com/EmrBMrUVG1— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 8, 2018
We're now just 6 hours until kick-off and the excitement is building!
Final field preparations appear to be ongoing. This place will be rocking in just a few hours.
The Georgia Bulldogs will arrive at Mercedes-Benz Stadium at 5:45 p.m.
It's officially gameday!
Gameday..... pic.twitter.com/Kfptz4HYhA— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) January 8, 2018
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