That leaves Clemson as the only hope of derailing the Alabama coronation parade. One program alone has proven itself built to beat Alabama this time of year – and it has another well-earned shot in a few days. When either wins, it will become the first program in a couple centuries to amass 15 victories in a season. That distinction should belong to one of the two signature programs of the college playoff era.
Without daring to admit it, Alabama and Clemson surely have been eyeing each other from across their separate borders with Georgia all season. How could they not? Everyone else was. Somewhere deep down, you just knew it had to come to this.
When these two meet in northern California, there will be great skill players all over the field. The skirmishes along the line of scrimmage will be epic, because both Alabama and Clemson have built themselves formidable border walls. That’s the game some would call bad for college football?
If this is a bad sequel, then Godfather II should never have been made.
While the call grows to expand the college playoffs, here are Alabama and Clemson offering the greatest argument against it. To bring in more teams at this point would only make for more mismatches, and for an increase in lesser teams playing for their participation trophies.
And the harsh reality is that neither team looks to be going away anytime soon. Clemson has itself a game-shaping freshman at quarterback. Alabama’s offensive and defensive MVPs in the Orange Bowl were both sophomores. Both just came off top-five recruiting classes – again. And Nick Saban may never go away. Yes, he just may coach from beyond the grave.
Georgia is making a real attempt to break into this gated community of two. Other legitimate challengers, honestly, are hard to find now. But in the meantime, until someone breaks up this dominant duet, I’ll watch Alabama-Clemson every time.