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Was Alabama’s 2016 defense/team the greatest of the Nick Saban era to not win a national title?

Alabama fans have not relived the emotions from the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game since it originally aired; however, feelings of disappointment resurfaced on Thursday via ESPN.

The Crimson Tide suffered a 35-31 loss at the hands of Dabo Swinney and the Clemson Tigers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla. 

Prior to the matchup, the Tide carried the best defense in college football in 2016 and arguably the best defense of the Nick Saban era.

On a defensive unit that featured Jonathan Allen, Dalvin Tomlinson, Da’Ron Payne, Reuben Foster, Ryan Anderson, Tim Williams, Minkah Fitzpatrick and Eddie Jackson, the Tide forced 29 turnovers and returned 11 for touchdowns while leading the NCAA in sacks (54).

Despite how elite the group was and Alabama’s offense holding its own, fans still wonder about how that team didn’t win it all and set up a potential three-peat? 

RELATED: VIDEO: Charlie Strong to revive his career at Alabama

On Friday, yours truly of Touchdown Alabama Magazine brought three answers on the question to the table via In My Own Words 

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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