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Clemson DE Shaq Lawson expected to play vs. Alabama

Clemson All-American defensive end Shaq Lawson, who suffered a left knee injury in the Tigers' semifinal win over Oklahoma, is expected to play in the College Football Playoff National Championship Presented by AT&T on Jan. 11 (ESPN, 8:30 p.m. ET).

Alabama reserve defensive back Tony Brown, however, will remain suspended, Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban said during Monday's teleconference.

Lawson, a junior who has already declared for the NFL draft, suffered a ligament sprain against the Sooners in the first quarter of the Capital One Orange Bowl.

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said Lawson will practice Monday.

"I think the prognosis is good at this point," Swinney said, "but he's got to get out there and run around a little bit today and kind of go from there, but I'm very optimistic he'll be able to play."

Saban didn't sound as encouraged about his cornerback. Brown was sent home from the semifinal game last week against Michigan State for a "violation of team rules."

"Tony's suspended," Saban said, "and until we get any new information, he will continue to be suspended."

Brown, a sophomore who also contributed on special teams, played in 13 games this season and had 16 total tackles and two passes defended.