As disappointing as it was to go all the way to New York as a Heisman Finalist for a second straight year, and to come back to Clemson empty handed, Deshaun Watson knows there is a bigger trophy waiting on the horizon for himself and his Clemson teammates, and the good news is they don’t have to depend on some subjective voter, who might have an agenda, to win it.
The Tigers, who will play Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl on New Year’s Eve as part of the College Football Playoff Semifinals, are just two wins away from capturing the ultimate prize in college football – the College Football Playoff National Championship Trophy.
“Deshaun is an unbelievable player. He said it best himself. He just wants to win. That is the thing that we are in right now,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said on Tuesday. “All of that stuff gets voted on and everyone gets a vote, and there are a lot of people that get a vote. A lot of people vote before the season is even over. They just go ahead and vote.
“That stuff is so subjective. But that trophy that they give you at the end of the season, after the last game is played, there is no vote on that one. That one is earned. No one has a say on that one except the guys on the field.”
This is the second year in a row the Tigers have earned a spot in the College Football Playoff. Last year, they made it all the way to the title game and came within a whisker of winning the national championship.
Watson threw for 405 yards and four touchdowns, while running for another 73 yards in what is considered the greatest performance ever in a national championship game by an individual player. However, despite, Watson’s efforts, Alabama hung on to win another national championship under Nick Saban.
Since that loss last January, it has motivated the Tigers to get back in this position, and this time they want to make sure they bring home the trophy that matters the most.
“What happens on the field, that is earned, and that is the trophy I promise you Deshaun wants more than anybody could give him for an award,” Swinney said. “It’s that team-trophy that you hold up when the last second tickets off the clock in the last game. That’s the one that we all want.”
Now the question is can the Tigers go get it.