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Georgia, Nick Saban Drive National Championship Reactions

The College Football Playoff National Championship wrapped up late on Monday night, with a resounding 26-23 overtime win for the Alabama Crimson Tide. After a lackluster first half, things picked up in the second, with Alabama coming back from 13 points down to beat the Georgia Bulldogs.

Naturally, Twitter was abuzz with reactions throughout the game — but especially in those closing moments. We dove into emotional measurement data from Canvs to determine what (and who) drove the conversation (and most specifically, the emotional reactions) during what was a thrilling title game.

Despite the ‘Bama win, it was Georgia that led the way, driving 13.8% of the game’s chatter between three hours before and three hours after the National Championship. “Georgia Bulldogs” far out-paced the next-largest driver, Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban, who accounted for 8.2% of all emotional reactions.

Two additional topics drove more than two-percent of the emotional reactions, while everything else fell below that bar. Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts, who was benched at halftime, was third overall and halftime performer Kendrick Lamar was fourth in terms of drivers for the game.

With an uneventful first half (UGA led 13-0 at the break), emotional reactions were limited for those first 30 minutes. But from Lamar’s performance on, there was a heightened energy from fans around the game action. The peak of those emotional reactions (31.9 percent of all game-related tweets) was around Alabama back-up quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s game-winning touchdown pass to DeVonta Smith.

Even with the split crowd at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium and watching at home, however, the most prominent reaction to the festivities was still “love.” Canvs measured 22.1% of all emotional reactions to be “love,” with 14.5% being categorized as “enjoy” and another 10% categorized as “crazy.” “Hate” and “dislike” (one would think pushed by upset Bulldogs fans afterward) made up a combined 10.4% of all emotional reactions.