Alabama running back and Heisman trophy winner Derrick Henry got the scoring started first with a 50-yard touchdown run, breaking through the Clemson line and rumbling nearly untouched through the secondary for the score.
Clemson looked ready to take over from there as quarterback Deshaun Watson found walk-on wide receiver Hunter Renfrow for two touchdown passes at the end of the first quarter, giving the Tigers a surprising 14-7 lead.
However, with Clemson poised to take a double-digit lead, 'Bama DB Eddie Jackson picked off Watson, setting the Tide up with excellent field position. They took advantage, quickly getting into the red zone and tying the game 14-14 with a one-yard TD run from Henry.
The defenses stepped up from there with neither side allowing another point over the last 9:35 of the second quarter. Clemson had a field goal attempt with nine seconds left that was blocked by Alabama, preserving the tie at halftime.
The Tigers also had to deal with some injury issues at the end of the half. Star cornerback Mackensie Alexander re-aggrevated a hamstring injury while tackling Henry and was taken to the locker room. Watson limped off the field after being sacked late in the second quarter, didn't miss any game action.
Henry has been dominant for the Crimson Tide all night, rushing for 127 yards and those two scores on 19 carries.
Not surprisingly, it was Watson who carried the Tigers in the first 30 minutes, passing for 161 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for another 45 yards. Renfrow was his favorite target all half as he caught four passes for 49 yards and both touchdowns.Back to the NCAA Newsfeed
Related Topics: College Football, Derrick Henry, Hunter Renfrow, SEC Football, NCAA Football, Alabama Crimson Tide Football, Deshaun Watson, Heisman Trophy, 2016 National Championship Game, College Football Playoff, Clemson Tigers Football