Though quarterback Justin Fields took a crushing hit in the first half of No. 3 Ohio State's 49-28 Sugar Bowl semifinal win over No. 2 Clemson, it appears as though he will play in the College Football Playoff National Championship against top-ranked Alabama. Speaking with reporters on Monday, Buckeyes coach Ryan Day said he definitely expects his quarterback to suit up, and the even better news is that Fields apparently said he felt better than expected the day after the game.
"I definitely expect him to play," Day said via the Columbus Dispatch.
Fields took a, which drew a targeting penalty and ejection for the senior leader on defense. Fields was slow to get up and taken to the Ohio State sideline medical tent. Though in obvious pain, Fields went on to have a stellar night with 385 yards passing and as many touchdowns as incompletions (six).
One thing that remains uncertain, however, is the actual extent of Fields' injury. Ohio State did not offer many details following the game and Day did not offer any addition specifics on Monday.
The news may not come as a huge surprise since he finished the semifinal, but Fields' health is obviously critical. Whatever he's dealing with, though, it's apparently something he and Ohio State are willing to have him play through for the next week. How he looks and whether the injury hinders his performance will be one of the main storylines of the game, though if the semifinal was any indication, hitting him only makes him stronger.