College Football Playoff pits Bearcats' Jerome Ford against Alabama, his former team

·1 min read
Cincinnati Bearcats running back Jerome Ford (24) and the Bearcats take the field in the first quarter of the American Athletic Conference Championship football game between the Cincinnati Bearcats and the Houston Cougars at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati on Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021. The Bearcats led 14-13 at the half.
Cincinnati Bearcats running back Jerome Ford (24) and the Bearcats take the field in the first quarter of the American Athletic Conference Championship football game between the Cincinnati Bearcats and the Houston Cougars at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati on Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021. The Bearcats led 14-13 at the half.

Cincinnati Bearcats running back Jerome Ford was named American Championship Most Outstanding Player for his effort in UC's 35-20 AAC title-game win against Houston at Nippert Stadium - a victory that clinched a berth for the Bearcats in the College Football Playoff.

ABC play-by-play announcer Joe Tessitore suggested after the game that the Alabama transfer - who committed to UC in Jan. 2020 - could face his former team, the Crimson Tide, in a CFP semifinal. On Sunday, that became a reality - with the Crimson Tide earning the top seed from the CFP selection committee and the Bearcats ranked No. 4.

"Jerome Ford - 187 yards and two touchdowns. Jerome Ford - who started his career at a certain college," Tessitore said Saturday. "We most likely will have a No. 1 Alabama against a No. 4 Cincinnati as a national semifinal with Ford playing against his old team."

Ford played parts of two seasons at Alabama before leaving for UC. He rushed for 483 yards in 2020 for the Bearcats before exploding for 1,238 rushing yards and 19 touchdowns on the ground this season.

Ford's first-quarter touchdown run Saturday was the Bearcats' 67th TD, breaking a single-season mark set by the 2009 team.

Ford - who averaged 10.4 yards per carry Saturday - also scored one of the Bearcats' three touchdowns during a dominant third quarter against Houston.

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This article originally appeared on Cincinnati Enquirer: College Football Playoff pits Jerome Ford against Alabama

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