SEC INSIDER

Repeat History: Bozeman celebrates with proposal

The Sports Xchange

January 09, 2018 at 10:09 am.

Jan 8, 2018; Atlanta, GA, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide offensive lineman Bradley Bozeman (75) proposed to his girlfriend after defeating the Georgia Bulldogs to win the 2018 CFP national championship college football game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Photo Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 8, 2018; Atlanta, GA, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide offensive lineman Bradley Bozeman (75) proposed to his girlfriend after defeating the Georgia Bulldogs to win the 2018 CFP national championship college football game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Photo Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Alabama’s national championship win over Georgia in Atlanta Monday night brought a lot of people to their knees as one of the most dramatic college football finales in history.

Most will remember and some will revile the decisive 41-yard touchdown pass from true freshman Tua Tagovailoa to fellow freshman DeVonta Smith to overcome what was a 13-point deficit in the third quarter, as well as a 51-yard field goal by Georgia’s Rodrigo Blankenship.

But that is not what brought 6-foot-5, 304-pound Alabama center Bradley Bozeman to his knees after the Crimson Tide’s 26-23 overtime win.

As caught by various media in the post-game celebration, Bozeman got down on one knee to propose to Nikki Hegstetter, another stunning Alabama athlete. He offered her a ring. No, not his national championship ring. An engagement ring, along with the proposal of marriage. She said yes.

Those who believe genetics are important for, say, athletics, then make note. Hegstetter is the 6-2, forward and captain of the Alabama women’s basketball team. Meantime she is pursuing a master’s degree in marketing and Bozeman is rated as one of the top five centers in the 2018 draft by NFLDraftScout.com.

For some college football fans, Bozeman’s proposal may bring back memories of another sensational college playoff game — the 2007 Fiesta Bowl — when Boise State running back Ian Johnson proposed to school cheerleader Chrissy Popadics. That also followed a remarkable comeback win that featured several trick plays, including Johnson’s two-point PAT on a Statue of Liberty play in Boise State’s historic 43-42 upset of Oklahoma State.

Despite public backlash from the televised proposal because he is black and she is white, they married on July 27, 2007. After several years with several NFL teams, Johnson joined Boise radio station KNFL in 2014. Last week the Johnsons and their 4-year old daughter, Johannah, joined 50 former teammates to celebrate the 10th anniversary of that memorable moment. The Fiesta Bowl win, that is.

 

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