AJ McCarron leads Alabama to BCS title over Notre Dame (+video)
With four touchdown passes by QB AJ McCarron, Alabama won their third BCS title in four seasons. Alabama stomped on Notre Dame, 42-14.
Miami Gardens, Fla.
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That's how they make it look so easy.
In what must be an increasingly frustrating scene for the rest of college football, another season ended with Saban and his players frolicking in the middle of a confetti-strewn field. Eddie Lacy ran all over Notre Dame, AJ McCarron turned in another dazzling performance through the air, and the Tide defense shut down the Fighting Irish until it was no longer in doubt.
The result was a 42-14 blowout in the BCS title game Monday night, not only making Alabama a back-to-back champion, but a full-fledged dynasty with three crowns in four years.
This one was especially satisfying to Saban.
"People talk about how the most difficult thing is to win your first championship," he said. "Really, the most difficult one to win is the next one, because there's always a feeling of entitlement."
Rest assured, that feeling won't last long in Tuscaloosa.
While Saban insisted he was "happy as hell" and "has never been prouder of a group of young men," it was hard to tell. He was already talking about reporting to the office Wednesday morning and getting started on next season.
"One of these days, when I'm sitting on the side of the hill watching the stream go by, I'll probably figure it out even more," Saban said. "But what about next year's team? You've got to think about that, too."
So, in short order, he'll be talking with underclassmen about entering the NFL draft, making sure everyone goes back to class on schedule, and getting started on that next depth chart.
"The Process," as he calls it, never stops.
"We're going to enjoy it for 24 hours or so," Saban said.
No. 2 Alabama quieted the top-ranked Irish on the very first drive — so much for waking up the echoes — and could've started the celebration at halftime, heading to the locker room with a commanding 28-0 lead.
The Tide (13-1) pushed it out to 35-0 midway through the third quarter on the third of McCarron's four touchdown passes, a 34-yarder to Amari Cooper with a defender nowhere in sight.
When Everett Golson finally scored for Notre Dame (12-1) with about 4 minutes remaining in the third, it snapped a scoreless stretch of nearly two full games — 108 minutes and 7 seconds — by the Tide.
"It was just a complete game by the offense, defense and special teams," said Alabama linebacker C.J. Mosley, the defensive MVP with eight tackles, one of them behind the line.
Despite the dazzling numbers by McCarron — 20 of 28 for 264 yards — he was denied a second straight offensive MVP award in the title game. That went to Lacy, who finished with 140 yards rushing on 20 carries and scored two TDs. Not a bad finish for the junior, who surely helped his status in the NFL draft should he decide to turn pro.