Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Georgia and TCU book their places in the CFP National Championship

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 1 Jan 2023

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The Georgia Bulldogs will face the TCU Horned Frogs in the CFP National Championship on January 9 after prevailing in a pair of close semi-finals on New Year’s Eve.

In the first of the two semi-finals, third-ranked TCU took on the two-seed Michigan Wolverines and produced the second-highest scoring playoff game since the inception of the new format in 2014.

The Horned Frogs looked set to coast through for a chance at their first National Championship since 1938 after their second pick-six of the game gave them a 34-16 lead late in the third period, but there would be plenty of points still to come.

In fact, the 44 combined points in the third quarter was the most ever in one quarter of a playoff game, and two quick touchdowns from Michigan cut the margin to 41-38 early in the fourth period.

Michigan got the ball back with 45 seconds and no timeouts, needing a touchdown to produce an incredible comeback win, but the TCU defense rose to the occasion and got the turnover-on-downs to escape 51-45 winners.

The second game was somehow even more dramatic, with defending champions Georgia scoring the game-winning touchdown with under one minute remaining to defeat the Ohio State Buckeyes 42-41.

Ohio State quarterback and likely top-five NFL Draft pick C.J. Stroud was excellent, completing 23 of his 34 passes for 348 yards, four touchdowns and no turnovers, but it was not enough.

Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett is now one game away from leading the Bulldogs to consecutive titles, matching Stroud stride-for-stride as he completed 23-of-34 for 398 yards, three passing touchdowns and one rushing touchdown, including the game-winning pass to Adonai Mitchell with 54 seconds on the clock.

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