The unlikely hero of Alabama's stunning national championship win

By  | 

Alabama is the king of college football again after a stunning, come-from-behind victory in the national title game against the Georgia Bulldogs. The Crimson Tide captured its fifth championship in nine years Monday night in Atlanta, beating Georgia on the final play of the game to win 26-23.

Alabama found itself in a hole Monday night, down 13-0 entering the second half and unable to find a rhythm, reports CBS News' Dana Jacobson. But that's when head coach Nick Saban decided to pull their starting quarterback, who'd only lost twice in two years, for an unproven, inexperienced true freshman – on college football's biggest stage.

After Alabama came only feet from capturing a national title in regulation, freshman backup quarterback Tua Tagovailoa bailed out his kicker and his team in storybook fashion. Tagovailoa likely never even imagined being in the game, let alone throwing the game-winning pass.

"I found out when we were in the locker room, you know, coach brought the quarterbacks together you know he made the statement, 'You know, Tua you're gonna start out the second half,'" Tagovailoa said. "Who would have ever thought I would have been here, you know?"

The freshman signal caller – who just last school year was taking classes in high school – was thrust into the biggest game of his life by the Alabama head coach Nick Saban after nothing else appeared to be working. It worked.

The victory marked a major milestone for Saban, who tied legendary coach Bear Bryant with six national titles, the most all time.

"Last year, we lost on the last play of the game and this year we won on the last play of the game. So, these kids really responded the right way. We said last year don't waste a failing, they sure didn't the way they played tonight," Saban said.

Cause for even more celebration came moments after their win. Alabama senior offensive lineman Bradley Bozeman proposed to his girlfriend on the field. Bozeman said he would not have proposed if they hadn't won. By her reaction, it appears she said yes.