CFP National Championship Preview


©The Talon News | Nicholas West

The 2023 College Football Championship will take place at 6:30 p.m. on January 9, 2023.

Jack Sevier, Reporter

The College Football National Championship is finally upon us as the teams will face off tonight. After 15 weeks we are finally down to the final 2 teams, #3 TCU and #1 Georgia. Both teams went a combined 27-1 this season with Georgia going undefeated while TCU was handed their only loss by #10 Kansas State at the time.   

Let’s see how both teams got here…

Georgia Bulldogs (14-0, #1)

The Georgia Bulldogs have been the definition of dominance this season. The Bulldogs are the reigning champions of college football and opened the 2022 season ranked #3 with 6 of the 65 first-place votes. In week 2, they jumped Ohio State to take the #2 spot with 17 first-place votes. Just a week later, they would jump Alabama for the top ranking in the AP Poll with 53 of the first-place votes…they would remain #1 for the rest of the season. 

Georgia’s dominance is so strong that in their 8-0 SEC run, they only allowed 97 points against them (the next closest was Kentucky at 180). The only downside to Georgia’s “perfect season” is the fact that they have only played 3 ranked teams all year before the playoff. Many other teams get more praise like Tennessee, who is ranked #6 and went 6-1 against ranked opponents (only losing to Georgia). When we dive deeper into the stats we will see that Georgia outscored the 4 ranked teams they played 168 to 87. Regardless of what stats a person may come up with to hate Georgia, their dominance is undeniable. 

TCU Horned Frogs (13-1, #3)

Now, if Georgia was our tale of dominance and star power, TCU is our underdog’s road to dominance. The Horned Frogs didn’t open the season top 10, or top 15, or even top 20. In actuality, TCU wouldn’t even come up into the rankings until week 5 following a 55-24 upset of #18 Oklahoma. From week 5 to the present TCU would never go down in rankings again. 

Unlike Georgia, TCU has had to battle this season, their starting quarterback suffered a season-ending injury in week 1 and many thought the season was already over. However, Max Duggan came in after losing his starting role and stepped up in a way not many players (in college or professional) have ever done. TCU has had many close calls this season, here are all the close games that they won.

Week 6: #17 TCU beats #19 Kansas 38-31

Week 7: #13 TCU upsets #8 Oklahoma State 43-40 in double OT

Week 8: #8 TCU beats #17 Kansas State 38-28, they overcame a double-digit deficit and completely shut out K-State in the 2nd half of the game. 

Week 12: #4 TCU survives Baylor 29-28 with a game-winning field goal.

The Horned Frogs have more grit and determination, unlike any other college team which is ultimately why they have a chance to capture their first title since 1938.

Both teams have a lot at stake, Georgia is trying to be the first team in the CFP era to repeat while TCU is trying to prove that the red-blood schools don’t run the league. After running a background check on both teams, I will now go over the key assets, and finally, my predictions on who will win the national championship.

Key Assets

#1: The most important asset for this game will be the quarterbacks. Max Duggan and Stetson Bennett finished 2nd and 4th in the Heisman voting respectively. Football is a team sport but everyone knows the QBs get the spotlight. People don’t look at the Bills’ killer defense, they look at Josh Allen, when you think of the loaded offensive core of the Bengals, you think of Joe Burrow first. The QB is the position that “leads the team” to victory and whichever QB can step up when it matters most will prevail.

#2: TCU has to jump out early. Georgia has been dominant all year, but they have only had to deal with 1 close game and that was last week against Ohio State (which they barely and unconvincingly won). TCU has dealt with back-and-forth drama all year and won all but one. If the game is close late I would lean on TCU because it’s one thing to play well when you’re up 30-10 but when it’s 28-28 in OT it’s anyone’s game. 


Finally, after a thorough examination of both schools, I have seen the pros and cons for both teams. And although Georgia is 14-0, they have played shaky lately and are very susceptible to close games while TCU has played lights out destroying Michigan and always making every game interesting…no matter the opponent. Despite Georgia’s star power, TCU will find ways to patch the wounds they create and I don’t think Georgia can do that. So with that being said, I have TCU winning the national championship in a shootout win 48-45.