Ohio State returns to the College Football Playoff national championship for the first time since 2014 to face off against Alabama on Monday night.
Amid a season unlike any other in history, the Buckeyes (7–0) enter the title game fresh off a sterling Sugar Bowl victory over Clemson, while the Crimson Tide (12–0) trounced Notre Dame in the Rose Bowl.
Ohio State is certainly no stranger to national championships, considering the program has won eight in its history.
The school officially formed a football team in 1890, but the Buckeyes didn't win a national championship until 1942. That year, after losing dozens of players who left to fight in World War II, the school went 9-1, with its only loss coming against No. 6 Wisconsin.
The Buckeyes went on to win additional titles in 1954, 1957, 1961, 1968, 1970, 2002, and most recently in the College Football Playoff's inaugural national championship in 2014.
Under coach Urban Meyer, Ohio State beat Oregon 42-20 after tallying 13 consecutive wins behind its second-and third-string quarterbacks. Starter Braxton Miller had been lost for the season with a shoulder injury, and then J.T. Barrett went down against Michigan. The Buckeyes next called on Cardale Jones to step in and lead the program to glory. He impressed against the Ducks, going 16 of 23 for 242 yards with a touchdown and an interception.
Now, Ohio State returns to the national championship stage with Ryan Day, Meyer's successor, at the helm and quarterback Justin Fields, who is expected to be a first-round NFL draft pick this spring.
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