Kirby Smart: Georgia a 'force to be reckoned with' in coming seasons

Alabama Crimson Tide players celebrate beating the Georgia Bulldogs in overtime to win the CFP National Championship presented by AT&T at Mercedes Benz Stadium

Spearheading a 26-23 comeback in overtime to give Alabama a national championship, Tagovailoa shocked the college football world. But Nick Saban in college, and maybe Bill Belichick in the National Football League, are two coaches who are so good, their names should be said in the same breath as those legends. "I just thank God I was put in a place and the position that I'm in now". "Why would I hold on to what I think is my life when I really have nothing without Him?"

The pass was flawless, and Smith caught it in stride as he reached the end zone for the game-winning 41-yard touchdown. Tagovailoa took an unnecessary sack on first down, making it second and 26.

The 6-yard strike to fellow freshman Henry Ruggs III was a big confidence booster for both of them.

It was evident Tagovailoa didn't spend the entire summer and season pouting about his lack of opportunities to display his skills.

"I knew [Tagovailoa] was gonna step in and do his thing", Hurts said.

Summoned at halftime, freshman Tua Tagovailoa, the backup to can't-quite-throw-it-well-enough Jalen Hurts, became an instant legend.

The loss will certainly be a tough one to swallow for the team, but the mindset of returning to work and improving was a source of comfort for the players who will be returning next year.

Special Teams, by now we all know that Mike Hughes was a Special player this year for the Knights. "And we went from there".

"Sometimes just a little change of style, a little spark sort of ignites everyone, and I think that happened in the game last night". It appears, and I'm no expert, that Tagovailoa's habits didn't just start when he got to Alabama.

Then a quick Alabama interception set him up in Georgia territory but the Tide settled for a field goal after three straight incompletions. They were too strong on defense and showed some heart late in the game, which seemed to be the deciding factor. So if this hypothetical game were to be played who would win and why?

Tagovailoa's production and heroics on the biggest stage the sport has to offer combined with Hurts being limited in the passing game has led some to already anoint the Hawaiian sensation as the starter heading into the 2018 offseason. Smith pulled in the 41-yard touchdown and Alabama claimed another trophy. Saban is the highest paid college football coach in the country-and, according to, one of the highest paid American sports coaches, period.

"As long as I feel like I can do a good job for the players and the team - from an energy level, from a focus level, from a concentration level, from providing a good staff of people around them to help them have success", Saban said. Georgia just couldn't seal it up, reminding us of another Georgia team who threw away a football championship last season.

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