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The national championship game through a Vols lens

Much to the displeasure of Tennessee fans, either Georgia or Alabama becomes national champion tonight. Let's look at this game trough an orange lens.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — One of Tennessee's rivals is about to win the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship. The Georgia Bulldogs and Alabama Crimson Tide meet in a rematch of the SEC Championship Game at 8:00 p.m. in Indianapolis, Indiana. 

According to a Twitter poll posted on Monday morning, a majority of Vols fans hope both teams lose. However, that is not possible. Let's look at what it means for Tennessee if Alabama or Georgia wins.

IF ALABAMA WINS:

It's nothing new, if Alabama wins. Nick Saban would get his eighth national championship, extending his record for the most titles. 

It means another year of the Crimson Tide having a grip on college football. It also makes the third Saturday in October the measuring stick game for the Vols. Tennessee has not won that game since Saban took over. Alabama beat UT, 52-24, in 2021.

Could eight championships be enough to make Saban say "okay, I've had enough. I'll retire?" The chances are not high. Alabama and coach Saban agreed to a contract extension through the 2028 season last June.

Arguably, the worst part of the Crimson Tide winning is knowing former Vol Henry To'o To'o is a national champion.

IF GEORGIA WINS:

If Georgia wins, a can of worms open that has not been open in a very long time. 

Ever since Josh Dobbs connected with Jauan Jennings on the game-winning Hail Mary in 2016, the Bulldogs have not lost to the Vols. Georgia beat Tennessee, 41-17, in 2021.

The one thing Tennessee fans have held over Georgia fans is their national championship in 1998 is more recent than the Bulldogs' last title in 1980. 

Jokes like "Georgia has Alabama swagger with a Vanderbilt trophy case" and "Date a Georgia girl. She won't expect a ring" vanish if UGA wins.

On a more serious note, a title adds fuel to the Bulldogs rocket in recruiting. The program is consistently producing top-five recruiting classes under Kirby Smart. Georgia becoming the national champion could tip the scales in the SEC East.

No matter what happens on Monday night, Tennessee is guaranteed to play the defending national champions in 2022. The Vols host the Crimson Tide on Oct. 15 and travel to Athens on Nov. 5 to play Georgia.