St. Louis high school football alums loom large in CFP semifinal matchups

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Michigan running back Hassan Haskins (25) leaps over Ohio State defenders for a touchdown in the second quarter of an NCAA college football game in Ann Arbor, Mich., Saturday, Nov. 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Ding)

ST. LOUIS-After weeks of hype, the college football playoff semifinals are here on New Year’s Eve.

Top ranked Alabama takes on #4 Cincinnati at 3:30 ET in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic. The game will be televised on ESPN.

Alabama wide receiver Jameson Williams (1) reacts after scoring a touchdown against Texas A&M during the fourth quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021, in College Station, Texas. (AP Photo/Sam Craft)

The Crimson Tide offense is driven by Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young, who has Cardinal Ritter grad Jameson Williams to thank for a lot of his production. Williams, who transferred from Ohio State, “hauled in an Alabama single-season record and an NCAA-leading four touchdowns of 70-plus yards this season … also totaled 11 touchdowns of 30-plus yards or more to lead the nation,” according to the University of Alabama sports information department.

Williams will be a threat in the kicking game as well, with two kickoff returns for touchdowns.

Williams has two years of eligibility remaining, but the semifinal and the potential championship game could be the last of Williams’ college career, as he’s projected as a first round NFL draft pick.

The other semifinal game will also feature St. Louis with some prominence.

#2 Michigan faces #3 Georgia in the Capital One Orange Bowl at 7:30 ET, also on ESPN, and the Wolverines’ running attack will feature a heavy dose of Eureka High School grad Hassan Haskins.

Haskins has literally been hurdling over defenders, as Michigan, behind 5 Haskins touchdowns, finally beat Ohio State for the first time in the Harbaugh era en route to a Big Ten conference championship.

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