CJ Stroud quite literally did just about everything he could to get Ohio State to the national championship game. In the end, it just wasn’t quite enough against the defending national champs.

After losing star tight end Cade Stover in the first quarter of action and superstar receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. in the second half, Stroud was at his absolute best with a shorthanded unit. He finished the game 23-for-34 passing the ball with 348 yards and 4 touchdowns without a turnover.

Stroud also delivered with his legs against the Bulldogs, including an epic 27-yard scramble in the final minute of the game to get the Buckeyes into field goal range. Unfortunately, an ineffective run on first down and a pair of incompletions forced Ohio State into a long kick, one that Noah Ruggles pulled wide left.

Asked about his head coach after the game, Stroud praised Ryan Day’s gameplan while saying Day “did a helluva job” and is a true “man in the arena.” Stroud also felt the Buckeyes should have won the game with the kind of performance they put in Saturday night.

After falling to the defending champs by one point in Atlanta, this is certainly a loss that will haunt Stroud, Day and the Buckeyes throughout the offseason. If it is indeed Stroud’s final game as a Buckeye, it will leave an especially sour taste in his mouth as he moves on.

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