Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — New Year’s Eve isn’t just a day of looking back on the past year or forward to the next one. It’s also the day where we move one step closer to crowning a college football national champion.

Both of the College Football Playoff’s semifinals were scheduled for Thursday, with top seed Clemson and fourth-ranked Oklahoma kicking off the playoff at 4 p.m. Played in Miami’s Sun Life Stadium, Clemson held off the Sooners by a final score of 37-17 in the Orange Bowl, behind a dominant running game. Quarterback Deshaun Watson led the way with 187 passing yards and a touchdown through the air, as well as 145 yards and a score on the ground. Running back Wayne Gallman tacked on 150 rushing yards and two touchdowns.

The second game in the playoff, the Cotton Bowl in Dallas’ AT&T Stadium, featured second-seeded Alabama and third-seeded Michigan State. That game, featuring the most successful active college football coach, Alabama’s Nick Saban, and Michigan State’s coach Mark Dantonio — who once served as an assistant coach to Saban at Michigan State — was set to kick off at 8 p.m.

The two winners will square off in the National Championship Game on January 11 in Glendale, Arizona.

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Source: Sports