College football is back, which means Saturdays will feature fans cheering for their favorite teams at schools all over the country. Last year was different as the COVID-19 pandemic altered seasons for nearly all the teams and a limited amount of fans were allowed to attend games. This year, things are back to normal as the season started on time with packed stadiums.
That leads to the question of who will win the College Football Playoff Championship. Alabama enters the season as the top-ranked team in the country and the defending champions. The Crimson Tide lost some talented players but show no signs of slowing down.
“Winning, sort of, has a price,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said, per 247Sports. “How resilient are you gonna be? It’s a little easier to get complacent and have a little bit of a latent disregard for what’s right. I just look at every year as a new season, like I took a new job and this is a new team and what do we gotta do to get them to play well. You always lose about 25 percent of your team so that is a challenge in and of itself.” Here’s a look at seven teams that could win the national title in January.
It only makes sense to have the national champions on top of the list. Saban has won six national titles with the Crimson Tide as well as nine SEC Championships. No matter what players are wearing the Alabama uniform, Saban will have his players ready.
2. Clemson Tigers
Clemson has become a powerhouse over the years, winning two national titles in five seasons and reaching the College Football Playoffs the last six seasons. Trevor Lawrence is no longer the quarterback, but DJ Uiagalelei has the ability to lead Clemson to a championship.
3. Ohio State Buckeyes
Ohio State reached the College Football Playoff championship last season and is poised to reach the game again. Justin Fields is no longer the Buckeyes quarterback, but C.J. Stroud led the quad to a big win this week, throwing four touchdown passes in the game against Minnesota.
4. Oklahoma Sooners
Oklahoma hasn’t won a national title since 2000 and has yet to win a playoff game. But the team believes Heisman Trophy candidate Spencer Rattle can get the Sooners to the promised land after throwing for 3,031 yards, 28 touchdowns and seven interceptions in 11 games last year.
5. Georgia Bulldogs
Georgia has no sympathy for Oklahoma as the Bulldogs hasn’t won a national title since 1980. Quarterback J.T. Daniels will be the key to Georgia’s success as he had a strong end to the 2020 campaign. The Bulldogs might have the best defense in the country, which definitely helps.
6. Texas A&M Aggies
If Alabama or Georgia can’t win the SEC, Texas A&M has a chance to surprise the experts. The Aggies finished the 2020 season with a 9-1 record, including a win against North Carolina in the Orange Bowl. The team’s only loss was against Alabama which was the second game of the year.
7. Iowa State Cyclones
In 2020, Iowa State won nine games, the most since 2002. The Cyclones needed the season with a 34-17 win over Oregon in the Fiesta Bowl and finished No. 9 in both polls. Can head coach Matt Campbell can take the Cyclones to the next level this year?