The Clemson Tigers took down Alabama 44-16 in last year’s national championship game, winning their second title in three years.

Now, they enter the season as either the No. 1 or No. 2 team in almost every preseason poll, but ESPN analyst Booger McFarland doesn’t think they’re getting enough respect.

During an appearance on “The Paul Finebaum Show” this week, McFarland said he’s disappointed that people want to talk about excuses for Alabama without giving Clemson the credit it deserves (via 247Sports):

“I’ve been listening to your show, Paul, and I kind’ve been a little disappointed,” McFarland said. “OK, and here’s why: Everyone seems to seems to say that when Alabama loses that the kids aren’t focused. ‘OK, Mack Wilson is worried about being the Butkus (Award winner for best linebacker in the country). These players are concerned with their individual accolades.’ How about just saying Clemson was a better team, and they got beat? That’s the one thing that people that call in to your show don’t just say.


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“Sometimes there’s not a reason or excuse, except the other team is better. And to me, that’s the disappointing part. When I listen to some of the callers that call in, ‘The coaching staff and no continuity, and you know, the players are worried about the NFL.’ What about that the other team is just better? (Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney) has done one hell of a job. And I was at the game, Paul. Clemson lined up and they beat Alabama. It wasn’t a fluke OK. (Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa) wasn’t sick. He didn’t have the flu. They just lined up and beat Alabama. They hit ’em square in the mouth and they beat ’em. And I think that that’s the thing that if you ask Nick Saban, he’ll tell you. And I think as you move forward, Alabama has to figure out how to get better.”

It does seem that the Tigers are getting a lot of credit, but perhaps McFarland hasn’t heard it.

However, both teams are sure to be good again this fall, so we’ll see if we get another title game matchup.