Defense Leads Alabama Past Washington, Into National Championship Game
The reigning champs will be back to defend their title after Alabama knocked off Washington, 24-7, in the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl to advance to the national championship game.
For much of the first half, the game appeared to be setting up as a close one with the two teams trading punts on most series and Alabama holding a 10-7 edge with just two minutes left before halftime. But Crimson Tide linebacker Ryan Anderson picked off a Jake Browning pass and returned it 26 yards for a touchdown to put Alabama up 17-7 going into the locker room. That was all the Alabama defense would need as Washington netted just 44 total yards in the second half.
Alabama running back Bo Scarbrough, the offensive MVP in the game, racked up 180 yards and two touchdowns, including a 68-yard highlight reel special to ice the game in the fourth quarter.
But it was the Alabama defense that really carried the day, holding the Huskies to just 194 total yards (44 rushing). Husky quarterback Jake Browning, the Pac-12 player of the year, was held to a season-low 150 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. Moreover, the Crimson Tide forced three Washington turnovers, which led to 10 Alabama points.
Alabama will move on to the national championship game against the winner of the Ohio State/Clemson matchup in the Fiesta Bowl.