ATLANTA—Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama’s backup quarterback, got the starting nod in the second half, and guided the Crimson Tide to a thrilling 26-23 win over Georgia in the College Football Playoff National Championship Game.
Tagovailoa went to the same high school as Marcus Mariota, and received mentorship from the former Oregon star when he was in fourth grade at a quarterback’s camp.
Tagovailoa had hopes of one day playing for the Ducks, and said if they gave him a timely offer, he wouldn’t turn it down.
Oregon stalled, however, and by the time the staff showed any interest, Tagovailoa had become the top-rated dual threat quarterback in the country and had his heart set on Alabama.
It remains a red stain on Mark Helfrich’s resume at Oregon, and the outcome of Monday’s National Championship showed exactly why.