The Alabama Crimson Tide got embarrassed in the College Football Playoff National Championship Game, losing to Clemson by the lopsided score of 44-16.

Ever since that night in early January, everyone has been wondering what the heck happened to the Crimson Tide against the Tigers.

Even as the Tide brought in the No. 1 recruiting class in the nation on Wednesday, Nick Saban couldn’t escape questions about the game. He said the Tide lacked the “Alabama factor” in Santa Clara — something that had made them such a force all year (via

[H]e attributed the bad result to the absence of the “Alabama factor” that helped the Crimson Tide emerge as the top college football program during this decade.

“That has always helped us be successful,” Saban said. “That’s having a team that plays with a lot of discipline, that’s having a team that everybody is sort of responsible and accountable to do their job at a high level and a standard and everybody puts the team first. So that’s the standard. And it’s up to the individual players on the team to do that. If I thought that we weren’t doing that in one game or ten games, I would address it with the players and make sure that everybody was on board with those principles and values that have helped us be successful. I don’t think we played in that game with the Alabama factor. So everybody needs to understand that and respond to it.”

With another elite recruiting class coming in this fall, the Tide will be expected to be one of the top teams in the country again.

Will we see another Clemson-Alabama final? We certainly could get that matchup once again this coming season.