SANTA CLARA, CA (WSFA) - Alabama and Clemson meeting up for the postseason for the fourth straight year feels like the same song and dance. However, there is one thing very different about this Tigers' team: A 19-year-old 6′6 215 pound quarterback that is already exceeding expectations and making national headlines for his talent.
“The guy is very accurate when he throws," Alabama defensive lineman Raekwon Davis smiled and said. "He’s young at the same time but he’s good.”
Head Coach Dabo Swinney made a quarterback change in the middle of the season, replacing Kelly Bryant with Trevor Lawrence. Ever since then, they have reeled off 10 straight wins and the hope of winning a National Title is very much alive for Clemson.
“Trevor Lawrence does a good job of throwing the ball down the field so that was an element of their game last year that maybe wasn’t as significant as it was before,” said Alabama head coach Nick Saban.
One of Lawrence’s main targets is another large true freshman: former Central-Phenix City wideout Justyn Ross.
“His arm. His arm is amazing, he can put the ball places you would never think it could go,” said Ross.
Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney said Trevor clearly has the intangibles needed for a prototypical quarterback, but it's his poise that is truly the thing that stands out.
“I think one of the more underrated things is poise and demeanor and he’s just really special when it comes to that,” said Swinney
Poised on the field and off, with a stat line that does the talking: nearly 3,000 yards passing, 27 touchdowns and only 4 interceptions.
Alabama linebacker Mack Wilson, along with plenty of the Tide's defense, has taken notice of the young quarterback.
“People don’t expect him to run and I feel like he could so I feel like we have to make sure we can contain him and collapse the pocket so we can try to make him one dimensional in the pass game,” Wilson said.
Both Tua Tagovailoa and Trevor Lawrence have bright NFL futures so let’s enjoy the fireworks on offense we will see Monday night.
“This team and me personally we worked really hard to get to this moment. I’m not surprised at all but it is really surreal to get to this moment,” said Lawrence.
He is trying to become just the third quarterback in National Championship history to win a title. One of the others' that won in his freshman year was none other than Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa.