2021-2022 College Football Playoff Recap
Posted By: Wes Langley on 1/10/2022
The kickers were the story in the first half of this game. Alabama led by 3 after one quarter before both teams traded field goals in the second quarter.
The bigger story was the injury to Alabama wide receiver Jameson Williams. That injury put Heisman Trophy Winner Bryce Young in a critical situation where he didn't have either Jameson Williams or John Metchie II. Young struggled in the biggest game of his career without his top two weapons. Alabama led by a field goal, ahead 9 to 6 at halftime over their SEC East rival.
Bryce Young threw a pick in the third quarter. Zamir White ended this drive with a rushing touchdown. Georgia led 13-9 after three quarters of play.
Stetson Bennett threw two touchdowns in the fourth quarter. Georgia ended up winning a pretty forgettable National Championship for College Football Fans that are not Georgia fans. Georgia won 32-18.
Georgia won their first National Championship in 40 years. It will be tough for the Bulldogs to repeat with all the talent they are set to lose to the 2022 NFL Draft.
GoodYear Cotton Bowl Classic
No. 1 Alabama Rolls past Non-Power 5 conf #4 Cincinnati in CFB Playoff semifinal
Posted By: Wes Langley on 1/3/2022
#1 Alabama defeated #4 Cincinnati, 27-6, in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on Friday at AT&T Stadium. With the win, which moved the Crimson Tide to 13-1 (7-1 SEC), Alabama advanced to the College Football Playoff national title game. It will mark the 6th CFP championship game appearance for Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide.
Alabama out gained the Bearcats, 482-218, thanks to a strong rushing attack led by running back Brian Robinson, who eclipsed 100 yards midway through the second quarter and finished with 204 yards on the ground on 26 attempts. Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Bryce Young also threw for 181 yards and three touchdowns while completing 17 of his 28 passes on his way to breaking several single-season records by a Alabama quarterback.
Defensive the Tide kept Cincinnati’s offense in check and held the Bearcats to their lowest point total since Sept. 7, 2019, when they were shut out against Ohio State. Defensive backs Jordan Battle and Brian Branch paced Alabama with eight and seven tackles respectively, while linebacker Will Anderson added six. Anderson also led Bama in sacks with 2. As a collective defense, the Crimson Tide registered 6 sacks on quarterback Desmond Ridder.
*Cincinnati 1st CFB playoff Appearance was bittersweet*
Desmond Ridder didn’t want to take on the burden of representing all the nontraditional schools in the CFP semifinal Cotton Bowl against #1 Alabama.
The breakthrough Bearcats held up pretty well despite Ridder's offense going nowhere for long stretches Friday while the Alabama running game overwhelmed them in a 27-6 loss that ended an undefeated season.
Cincinnati (13-1) still had a chance when Bryan Cook intercepted Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young's pass near midfield with Alabama leading by 11 late in the third quarter.
Ridder and the Bearcats went backward from there, and the Crimson Tide (13-1) extended the lead to 24-6 on the next possession after avoiding a 3 & out by converting on 3rd & 16.
The Bearcats (No. 4 in The Associated Press and CFP rankings) were held without a touchdown for the first time since a 42-0 loss to Ohio State in the second game of 2019. That also was the last time they played a top 5 opponent.
Cincinnati averaged 2.8 yards per play while falling behind 17-3 at halftime. Alabama had 302 yards at halftime when the Bearcats came in allowing 305 per game.
Fifth year Alabama senior Brian Robinson Jr. had his first career 200 yard game, finishing with 204 yards as the Crimson Tide had a season high 301 yards on the ground.
Cincinnati's best chance to get in the end zone came on its first possession, when Alec Pierce was open at the goal line on a first down pass from the Alabama 9 but linebacker Henry To’oTo’o knocked it down at the line of scrimmage.
The Bearcats settled for the first of two field goals, their only scoring before 3 consecutive three and outs. The second drive to a field goal started the second half, and the next good scoring chance stalled inside the Alabama 25 when Ridder was sacked on fourth down.
With the game out of reach late in the fourth quarter, the Bearcats failed again on fourth down. Ridder’s pass was incomplete as he finished 17 of 32 for 144 yards for his first sub-100 rating of the season (90.9).
Capital One Orange Bowl
#2 Michigan vs #3 Georgia
Posted By: Wes Langley on 1/3/2022
*Dawgs dominate to earn rematch with Alabama in title game*
#3 Georgia defeat #2 Michigan 34-11 on New Year's Eve in the Orange Bowl, setting up a 2021 SEC Championship Game rematch with #1 Alabama in the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship. The Bulldogs and Crimson Tide will meet in the title game for the second time in the last five years.
*Georgia needed this version of Stetson Bennett*
Bennett is not a highly touted NFL Draft prospect. In fact, I'll be shocked if he ever takes an NFL snap. The problem is people know he's not an NFL QB and immediately write him off as the weak point of Georgia's offense. However, Bennett is also the same player who finished 4th nationally in passing efficiency. Sure, his deep throws scrape the clouds and could lead to rain. That wouldn't work in the NFL, but it seems to be working just fine for him at the college level!
Bennett finished the night with 307 yards passing and three while also using his legs to buy time and extend drives.
In Georgia's loss to Alabama, the Dawgs fell behind and found themselves chasing. Bennett struggled in that situation. He threw for 340 yards and three touchdowns, but he was picked off twice as well. Those turnovers destroyed Georgia's hopes of coming back to win the game, but now he'll get a chance to redeem himself in a title game rematch.
2. It's the Nakobe Dean show!
The downside of everybody on the Georgia defense being awesome is that sometimes awesome players get lost amid all that awesome. There was plenty of talk all season long about how Jordan Davis should be a Heisman Trophy finalist, and while I love Jordan Davis, I always thought the talk was silly because he's not even the best player on the Georgia defense. That title belongs to Nakobe Dean, and the reasons why were all on display in Miami.
Dean finished the night with seven tackles (five solo), a sack and a forced fumble as he flew all over the field and seemed to get to spots Michigan players were hoping to get to before they even knew they wanted to be there. He is an absolute playmaker to watch play.
*Terrible night, fantastic season for Michigan*
Georgia's defense was dominant all year but then struggled against Alabama, so suddenly it stunk and was overrated by anybody who ever paid it a compliment. We can't even entertain the idea that it just had a bad day against a great team.
And people will feel the same way about Michigan after Friday night. It was an awful night for the Wolverines, but even if the season ends with a terrible taste in Michigan's mouth, the 2021 campaign was one to build on for the future. The Wolverines dominated all year long -- when they fell behind 7-0 to start the game, it was the largest deficit they'd faced all season and were finally able to get the Ohio State monkey off their back, beating the Buckeyes for the first time since 2011.
They won their first Big Ten title since 2004. They won 12 games in a season for the first time since 1997 when they won their last national title. Aidan Hutchinson was a Heisman finalist. It was an incredible season.
It just had a terrible ending, and that's fine. Not every story can end with everybody getting what they want, but at least Michigan proved to the world it can get to the playoff. Before the year began, plenty of people including some in Ann Arbor were questioning if the program would ever get back to national prominence again.
#3 Georgia Faces #1 Alabama for the National Championship @Lucas Oil Stadium on Jan 10th @8:00