Clemson cornerback and non stop trash talker Mackensie Alexander says that Alabama football is favorited in the National Championship because it’s “A brand thing”. He’s wrong, Alabama is the favorite because they are the better team.
The Clemson players just can’t stop talking can they? First they wanted to talk about how Derrick Henry wasn’t the best player in college football this year, and now they can’t stop talking about how they get no respect. Alabama football really does always get the mouthy opponents.
Let’s put the crying about why Clemson isn’t the favorite in this game to bed though… because it’s ridiculous.
Clemson has had a fantastic season, is a very good football team, and they are indeed undefeated. Most modern football fans can reason though that just being undefeated isn’t the most important thing in the world. Sometimes being undefeated isn’t a clear picture of the team. Does anyone remember 2012 Notre Dame? 2012 Notre Dame was undefeated when they got to the championship game against Alabama… how did that work out again?
Let’s take a look at Clemson’s schedule:
Wofford Terriers – Won 49-10
Appalachian State Mountaineers – Won 41-10
Notre Dame Fighting Irish – Won 24-22
Louisville Cardinals Won – 20-17
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Won – 43-24
Boston College Eagles – 34-17
Miami Hurricanes Won – 58-0
NC State Wolfpack Won – 56-41
Florida State Seminoles Won – 23-13
Syracuse Orange – 37-27
Wake Forest Demon Deacons – 33-13
South Carolina Gamecocks – Won 37-32
North Carolina Tar Heels – Won 45-37
Oklahoma Sooners – Won 37-17
Alabama Crimson Tide – Monday January 11, 2016
That’s a good schedule, there’s no arguing that. Of those mighty teams though only two, Appalachian State and Louisville, won their bowl game. None of the ranked teams Clemson faced this year won a bowl game, none. Now compare that to Alabama who faced eight teams that would go on to have post season victories.
Clemson’s defense has allowed 280 points to their two bowl win schedule and Alabama allowed 187 this year… against their superior schedule.
We aren’t saying that Clemson hasn’t played good teams, they have, but they haven’t faced the same kind of competition that Alabama has. Clemson certainly hasn’t faced any teams with a defense like Alabama; and Alabama’s defense in this one is going to be the difference.
Much has been made by the media and Clemson fans about Deshaun Watson being a duel threat quarterback, and Alabama having trouble with duel threat QBs. If you want to know why that’s bunk go read our interview with Rece Davis, he explains it much better than we can. The bottom line is that duel threat QBs give everyone in college football trouble, and Watson will get his yards, but Alabama will also shut him down some.
Alabama has playmakers on offense too though, Derrick Henry and Calvin Ridley come to mind. So if Alabama’s defense is able to shut down Watson and force some three and outs then it falls on Clemson’s defense to step up, and despite trash talk from Clemson’s cornerback the stats and experts don’t think that’s going to go well.
The reason Vegas and most experts are favoriting Alabama is defense not brand, it’s defense. So Clemson’s players can pout about disrespect all they want (Even though that’s ridiculous because they aren’t disrespected they are ranked #1) because in the end it’s about proving it on the field.
None of this will matter to Clemson fans though, we know that. They will chirp about disrespect right up until kickoff, then they will just sit in stunned silence.