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Predicting College Football's Next 9 National Champions

Who's going to win college football's national championship this upcoming season? 

What about in 2017? 2018? 2019? Etc. 

We're attempting to figure that out. 

We're predicting the next nine national champions in college football. 

Using logic and some very creatively imagined scenarios, we've predicted who's going to win it all until 2024. 

Surely, you won't disagree with most of them (maybe any of them) but it's a fun read. 

Here they are. 

Start With: 2016, Clemson >>>

2016 - Clemson 

The Tigers get their second national championship in Year 9 of the Dabo Swinney era. 

After a 14-1 season in 2015 that ended with a loss to Alabama in the national title game, Clemson starts the 2016 season with national title-or-bust hopes. The Tigers don't bust. 

Deshaun Watson, in his final season with the program, leads Swinney's squad to a 12-0 regular season followed by a victory in the ACC Championship Game. Watson, who's been the Heisman Trophy frontrunner since putting up a 400-yard, four-touchdown game in the season opener at Auburn, takes home the trophy - the program's first. 

After topping LSU in the College Football Playoff semifinal, Clemson gets its shot at revenge in the national championship game. The Tigers get it, defeating Alabama in the national title game, preventing a Crimson Tide back-to-back and giving Clemson its first national title since 1981. 

Next: 2017, Alabama >>>

2017 - Alabama

Nick Saban wins one more national championship.

Saban, at 66, wins his sixth national title - and his fifth at Alabama - in his 11th year leading the Crimson Tide's program. Alabama goes 15-0, throttling Florida in the SEC Championship Game, giving Tuscaloosa, Ala. its first undefeated season since 2009. 

It's his last national title, too. He'll retire two years later at age 68, ending one of - if not, the - most dominant stretches of coaching the sport has ever seen. 

Saban retires as the greatest coach in college football history, but Alabama won't be down for very long after he leaves. 

Next: 2018, Michigan >>>

2018 - Michigan 

Jim Harbaugh gets it done. 

In Year 4 leading the Wolverines' program, Harbaugh, with a team comprised of basically all players he has recruited, ends Ohio State's reign of dominance on the Big Ten. Michigan goes 13-1 - its lone loss coming on a dreary afternoon at Northwestern - with a win against Nebraska in the Big Ten Championship Game. The regular season ended with a surprisingly dominant, 35-17 win at Ohio State in Columbus. 

It's the only national championship Harbaugh wins in Ann Arbor, Mich. 

He heads back to the NFL two seasons after he wins the title. 

Next: 2019, Ohio State >>>

2019 - Ohio State

The Buckeyes win their last national championship under Meyer the year after Harbaugh gets it done at Michigan. 

Ohio State, fueled by its loss at home to the Wolverines the season prior, runs through the regular season - a regular season that includes a home win against a top-five TCU team - before beating an also undefeated Michigan team at The Big House in the biggest OSU-Michigan game the rivalry has seen since 2006. 

The College Football Playoff contests are won fairly easily by the Buckeyes, who fail to have a letdown after the big win against the Wolverines. 

Meyer, at age 55, now has four national championships, causing many to think that he - not Saban - is now the sport's greatest coach ever. 

Next: 2020, Florida >>>

2020 - Florida 

The Gators win their first national championship since Meyer held up the trophy for Florida after the 2009 season. 

Jim McElwain has consistently brought top-five recruiting classes to Gainesville, Fla. since taking over in 2015. 

The recruiting finally pays off with a championship. 

It comes with a perfect, unbeaten season - something Meyer was never able to do while leading the Sunshine State's premier program. 

Florida fans are now finally able to forgive Meyer for leaving, too. 

Next: 2021, Georgia >>>

2021 - Georgia 

The Bulldogs win their first national championship since 1980.

Georgia, long seen as a sleeping giant in the college football world, has now been led by Kirby Smart for multiple seasons. 

Georgia, which starts the 2021 season ranked No. 1 in the country, loses an early September game, causing some Bulldog fans to question if it's the Richt era all over again. The Bulldogs rebound, though, winning out and defeating Ole Miss in the SEC Championship Game before beating Oregon in the College Football Playoff national title game. 

Next: 2022, Oregon >>>

2022 - Oregon 

The Ducks win their first national championship two seasons after Chip Kelly decided to come back to Eugene, Ore. 

Kelly decided he'd had enough with the NFL in 2020 and Oregon, which never came close to a national title after Marcus Mariota's last season with the Ducks, welcomed Kelly back with open arms. 

The College Football Playoff national title game is touted as Nike vs. Under Armour (which has nearly closed the gap on The Swoosh in the athletic apparel market), as Maryland, led by D.J. Durkin, has its first elite season with the former Michigan assistant, whom the Terps hired after firing Randy Edsall in 2015. 

Nike is victorious, as Oregon wins its first ever national championship. 

Next: 2023, Notre Dame >>>

2023 - Notre Dame 

Urban Meyer wins his fifth national championship...with the Fighting Irish. 

Meyer, who won two national titles while at Ohio State, decided he wanted a new challenge after the 2020 season in Columbus. He decides to take the Notre Dame job, a job he's previously stated as his "dream job." The Fighting Irish, which have struggled since Brian Kelly left for the NFL in 2018, fired their current coach and backed up the Brinks truck for Meyer. 

At age 59, Meyer, in Year 3 at Notre Dame, wins the national championship like he did in his third year at Ohio State. The title gives Meyer six national titles before he turns 60, causing everyone to give him the title of "college football's greatest coach of all-time." 

Meyer won't be done winning national titles, either. 

Next: 2024, Texas >>>

2024 - Texas 

The Longhorns win their first national championship since Vince Young galloped into the Rose Bowl end zone against USC in 2006. 

Texas is now coached by Tom Herman, who in 2021 took over for Charlie Strong (who ended up having a successful stint in Austin before leaving for the NFL). Many thought Herman would take the Ohio State gig after Meyer left, but he opted for the Longhorns instead. A former graduate assistant at Texas and the head coach at Houston, Herman has significant Texas ties and brings in back-to-back-to-back No. 1 recruiting classes. 

The elite recruiting paves the way for a national championship in Herman's fourth year with the Longhorns, prompting many to believe that Texas in on the verge of something incredibly special in the second half of the 2020s. 

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