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Alabama vs. Notre Dame is finally here with the BCS Championship on the line, and we’re right there with you in getting through this Monday so we can park ourselves in front of the game.
The BamaHammer staff has weighed in on how this game shapes up; here are our predictions on the game:
Alabama has a advantage over Notre Dame in terms of overall talent, but soft spots in the secondary – as well as trouble getting off the field on third down – will keep this game in range for the Irish. Their defense is second to none, but haven’t faced an offensive line like ‘Bama’s. The key to this game winning the third down battle on offense and defense, and limiting mistakes. If Alabama doesn’t turn the ball over, they will be very difficult to beat. A struggle, but Alabama pulls away late.
Alabama 31, Notre Dame 17
Reports coming out of Miami are that Nick Saban has a calm and relaxed demeanor. This is horrific news if you’re an Irish fan. Forget the clutter, forget the “distractions,”Alabama rolls.
Alabama 27, Notre Dame 13
It’s true that Alabama has some holes in the secondary, but I don’t think Notre Dame has the personnel to really take advantage of it. I think the difference will be Alabama’s offensive line against Notre Dame’s front seven, and I think the Tide’s line will get the better in the matchup and Alabama will have success running the ball, and that should lift them to their second straight national championship.
Alabama 23, Notre Dame 10
Cinderella was a fairy tale. Championships are not about fairy tales or gimmicks. This game is college football. Alabama and Notre Dame are the sport’s two greatest traditions and play well on both sides of the ball. Notre Dame has the edge in the series, but Coach Saban has a habit of overcoming history and he’s had a month to get ready. I think the edge comes in conditioning and experience.
Alabama 32, Notre Dame 17
This game has been billed as one if the best, if not the best, game in BCS history and it will live up to the hype. Expect Alabama to be outmatched in a couple areas and Notre Dame to struggle as well, but when the clock shows triple zeros, Bama will come out with the better score and their 15th national title.
Alabama 24, Notre Dame 21
It will be a game that looks a lot like the SEC Championship Game – at least for three quarters. The Tide and Irish will battle like the Greeks and Trojans. It will be a war of attrition with points hard to come by and the lead changing hands several times. But in the fourth quarter, the Alabama offensive line will impose its will on the Irish front seven. Lacy and Yeldon will find room to run and AJ will find Amari Cooper and Kevin Norwood on timely play-action passes. When the clock runs out and the confetti cannons fire, the chaff will be crimson and white and the score board will read:
Alabama 26, Notre Dame 13
I predict that Nick Saban will use his dark powers to Force choke Brian Kelly in the second quarter. Shortly after that Notre Dame star defensive player Manatee Tebow will trip on all the leaves he is wearing and dishonor his ancestors. In the third quarter Jessie Williams will slow down, as he is busy digesting the Notre Dame QB. By the fourth quarter the Catholic Church will have canonized Nick Saban and Alabama will win.
Alabama 49, Notre Dame 3
The game is back and forth throughout, but Notre Dame doesn’t have Alabama’s depth and gives up a late game-icing touchdown drive.
Alabama 27, Notre Dame 17
Alabama makes it a point to run on Notre Dame and controls the game from the line of scrimmage. The Irish offense cannot do anything against the best defense in the nation. Alabama wins.
Alabama 31, Notre Dame 6
Alabama wins the battle in the trenches. The Tide’s relentless rushing attack wears down Notre Dame’s talented front seven. AJ McCarron hits Amari Cooper for a long touchdown and Alabama scores late on a defensive touchdown.
Alabama 24, Notre Dame 14
As I noted on ESPU’s UNITE last week, these are two evenly matched teams, but Alabama’s offensive line will give Eddie Lacy and T.J. Yeldon time to run and AJ McCarron time to look downfield. Notre Dame will try to spread the field but Alabama’s defense will be ready.
Alabama 28, Notre Dame 17