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Tuesday, January 12, 2016

TIDE ROLLS TO NATIONAL TITLE VICTORY, 45-40 OVER CLEMSON


Once again, we were in the right place at the right time!

Here's the game story from Monday night's NCAA football national title game in which Alabama stunned Clemson 45-40 in the in the highest-scoring college championship game in history.  And the Monday Morning Goalie was lucky enough to be on hand for it.

Alabama won on a trick play, with the game on the line. Were you watching?  A shrewd move by Alabama coach Nick Saban or dirty pool?

Here's the game story from the Associated Press:

GLENDALE, Ariz. - No wonder the normally stone-faced Nick Saban was smiling.

The Alabama coach took one of the biggest gambles of his career in the fourth quarter of Monday night's national championship game against Clemson. And it paid off.

He called an onside kick just after Adam Griffith's tying field goal in a pivotal moment of the Crimson Tide's 45-40 win over Clemson. Marlon Humphrey recovered and two plays later Jake Coker hit tight end O.J. Howard for a 51-yard touchdown.

TV cameras captured a kind of satisfied, I-got-you grin from Saban on the sideline that doesn't often surface publicly.

And why not? The five-time national champion coach who insisted a couple of days earlier that he's "a very happy person'' probably deserved a moment of back-patting after that one. Because it worked.

Boy, did it.

Clemson's dynamic quarterback, Deshaun Watson, made sure that didn't end the game even after yet another huge special teams play by Alabama. Kenyan Drake, who's endured a broken arm and leg in his final two seasons, raced 95 yards for a touchdown on a kick return that gave the Tide 17 points in just over a three-minute span.

Saban's gamble kept the ball out of the hands of Watson for a bit after he bedeviled the nation's top defence both passing and rushing. With the Tigers also buckling down against Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry late in the game, the gamble came at just the right time. It caught Clemson and everyone else by surprise.

Onside kick? In a tie game? With a national title on the line?

The $7 million-a-year coach is crazy like a fox.

It's far from the first time Saban has pulled out a timely trick. It's just not what he's known for in a career that now includes four national titles in seven seasons and a fifth at LSU.

His reputation's built more on recruiting, intense preparation and teams sporting punishing running games and even more dominant defences.

PHOTO GALLERY



A shot from the tailgate festivities outside University of Phoenix Stadium ...




ESPN threw this bash for VIP's.  Perhaps TSN will consider doing the same at Grey Cup?


The Clemson University tailgate party in the Renaissance hotel adjacent to the stadium ...


The Alabama tailgate party was much more subdued.  Their fans had much more of a "been there, done that" mentality ...


Inside the stadium, with the roof closed, housing 74,500 fans ...


With my buddy Murray Belyk ...


Alabama fans were in the partying mood ...


We were lucky enough to have this gentleman sitting in front of us for the game!  Check out the bicep tattoos featuring Alabama's war cry ...


And one last action shot from our seats.  They only cost us $300US each.  WELL worth it!

RP
@rodpedersen

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

You wore a hockey jersey to a football game. Scruffy will be having words with you upon your return. Cmon Rod, be better!


Al

Anonymous said...

A hockey guy has to promote the NHL wear ever he goes. Every person from either the Tigers or the Tide would have asked him about his jersey. How many college football folks have never been introduced to the greatest game on ice!
It sure looked like a fun time and great last minute seats!

Arnold

Anonymous said...

Wearing an NHL jersey to a NCAA title game......classy.......how Regina-ish!

Anonymous said...

And of course the token Canadian in a hockey jersey.

Anonymous said...

to the above moron talking about rod's promotion of the game on ice. 75,000 people came to that football game, you think they give a rats ass about hockey? nah you are probably right, after seeing that hick in a hockey jersey they probably will scramble to NHL rinks. Pedersen paid $300 for the tix but couldn't spend $10 on a t-shirt supporting one of the teams in the game. how Pedersen-ish of you. as for that onside kick being dirty pool? you must even be sick of you by now rod. what a clown

Anonymous said...

Why are u on here? Pure jealousy perhaps?

Anonymous said...

You PLAY to WIN the GAME!!!
How hard is that to grasp.

Anonymous said...

"greatest game on ice!" What does curling have to do with Rods comments?

Rod Pedersen said...

Just throwing out some discussion points amigo!

And yes, lots of people asked about the jersey. I thought the Coyotes' red matched that of the Crimson Tide.

RP

Anonymous said...

RP said, "For Monday night's College Football Playoff National Championship. The truth is the game just fell in our lap because this excursion was planned around the Arizona Coyotes' current homestand but, what the heck?"

Really Rod... NHL hockey is so important to you that the National Championship of American College football is just 'whatever' for you...

Really!

Anonymous said...

Tongue is firmly in cheek when I made that first comment if you didn't get that RP


Al

Anonymous said...

Living the dream ....

Rod Pedersen said...

I gotcha Al.

As for the guy before you, yes, it's all true.

RP

Anonymous said...

Rod, please tell me you were in your seat for the onside kick

Rod Pedersen said...

Of course I was. Where else would I be?