Tagovailoa starts second half for 'Bama in national championship

Aubrey Yates
January 9, 2018

And it came in overtime.

Down double-digits in the national championship game, Alabama made a change at quarterback coming out of halftime, benching two-year starter Jalen Hurts in favor of true freshman Tua Tagovailoa.

Alabama came from behind Monday to beat Georgia 27-23 in overtime in the college football national championship game. The teams entered the final minute of play tied at 20-20.

With the Crimson Tide trailing the Georgia Bulldogs 13-0 at the half, Alabama coach Nick Saban chose to roll the dice and trotted out the true freshman.

A shaky start wouldn't bother the freshman, though, as he completed his next five passes on a touchdown drive in a game where the Crimson Tide could barely get a first down. But Pappanastos missed his second field goal of the game badly to the left, sending it to overtime.

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Georgia led 13-0 after two quarters on the strength of freshman quarterback Jake Fromm and the tremendous play of wide receiver Mecole Hardman.

Tagovailoa played in eight games this season, but hasn't had a ton of meaningful reps.

And that's what Alabama needs against Georgia. But on his second play, Tagovailoa threw a 41-yard touchdown bomb to seal the OT win for the Tide.

Tagovailoa's first possession didn't go much smoother: a three-and-out for 7 yards. The interception only turned into a field goal, but the comeback was on from there.

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