Chris Graythen/Getty Images(NEW ORLEANS) -- Ezekiel Elliott rushed for a Sugar Bowl-Record 230 yards and three touchdowns to help No. 4 Ohio State upset top-ranked Alabama 42-35 Thursday, to advance to the National Title game.
"He's probably the most underrated back in the United States," Coach Urban Meyer said of Elliott.
Alabama (12-2) took an 21-6 lead early in the second quarter when T.J. Yeldon ran for a two-yard touchdown. But Ohio State never lost its composure, scoring two touchdowns in the final three minutes of the quarter and headed into halftime down one.
The Buckeyes started off the second half the way they ended the first with Cardale Jones connecting with Devin Smith on a 47-yard touchdown bomb to take the lead.
Ohio State looked like it finished off the game when Elliott dashed for an 85-yard touchdown run with 3:24 to play. But Alabama answered right back when Blake Sims connected with Amari Cooper on a six-yard touchdown making the score 42-35 with 1:59 to go. The Crimson Tide defense then proceeded to force the Buckeyes into a three-and-out to get the ball back with 1:33 remaining. But their hope for victory was dashed when Tyvis Powell intercepted Sims' pass with time expiring to seal the game.
"I'm proud of this team," Alabama head coach Nick Saban said. "They excelled all year long and kept Alabama at the forefront of college football."
Ohio State (13-1) will now take on No. 2 Oregon (13-1) on Jan. 12 for the National Championship.
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