INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Stetson Bennett threw two touchdown passes to lead Georgia to a 33-18 win over Alabama on Monday night for its first national championship in 41 years.
Bennett, a former walk-on, threw scoring passes of 40 yards to Adonai Mitchell and 15 yards to Brock Bowers.
Georgia again leaned on its defense. The clinching touchdown came on cornerback Kelee Ringo’s 79-yard interception return of Bryce Young’s pass with less than a minute remaining.
Georgia won its first national title since 1980. Vince Dooley, the 89-year-old coach of that team, attended the game.
The Bulldogs lost to Alabama 41-24 in the Southeastern Conference championship game on Dec. 4.
Bennett’s lost fumble set up an Alabama touchdown for an 18-13 lead with about 10 minutes remaining. Georgia dominated the remainder of the game.
It was the first win for Georgia coach Kirby Smart, the former Alabama defensive coordinator, in five meetings with Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban.