Alabama wins 16th national title

Published 11:43 pm Monday, January 11, 2016

Crimson Tide beats Clemson 45-40 in College Football Playoff National Champsionship

The process continues.

Alabama beat Clemson 45-40 to win its 16th National Championship tonight at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.

The Crimson Tide scored 24 points in the fourth quarter and Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry rushed for 158 yards on 36 carries and scored three touchdowns to help the program win the College Football Playoff title.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Jake Coker went 16-of-25 for 335 yards and two touchdowns in the air.

Tied 24-24 in the fourth quarter, the Crimson Tide took a gamble that paid off in the form of an onside kick.

After the onside kick recovery, Coker connected with tight end O.J. Howard for a 51-yard strike to put Alabama ahead 31-24.

Clemson cut the game to four on a Greg Huegel 31-yard field goal, but the Crimson Tide surged ahead after Kenyan Drake returned the kick off 95 yards for a score and a 38-27 ead.

The Tigers didn’t go away as Artavis Scott caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from Deshaun Watson to bring the score to 38-33.

Needing another score, the Crimson Tide drove the field and Henry put Alabama ahead by 12 at 45-33 with 1:07 left.

However, the Tigers weren’t going to go down without a fight as Watson connected with Jordan Leggett on a 24-yard pass with 12 seconds to go.

The expected onside kick came on the next play, but the ball sailed out of bounds, clinching the Crimson Tide’s national championship, and first in the College Football Playoff.

Throughout the entire contest, Watson kept Alabama on its heels with the use of his feet and arm. He finished the game 30-of-47 for 405 yards and four touchdowns in the air, while allowing an interception.

Early on in the contest, Clemson’s Hunter Renfrow, a freshman, caught two touchdown passes in the first quarter to give the Tigers an early lead.

Henry score Alabama’s first touchdown of the game and the first in the second quarter to tie the game at 14-all.

At the break, the game was square at 14-14.

Early in the third quarter, Howard, who finished with five receptions for 208 yards and two touchdowns, caught a 53-yard dart from Coker with 12:53 left in the first half. The Crimson Tide led 21-14.

Huegel kicked a field goal to inch the Tigers closer to the lead at 21-17, and Wayne Gallman added a 1-yard run for a 24-21 lead late in the third quarter.

Alabama’s Adam Griffith kicked a 33-yard field goal less than 5 minutes left in the fourth quarter to tie the game up at 24-24.

The Crimson Tide finished their season 14-1.

Clemson suffered its first loss of the season.