Tonight the improbably undefeated, No. 1 Notre Dame Fighting Irish come in as big underdogs against the defending National Champion Alabama Crimson Tide in the BCS Championship game in Miami. We've been waiting about six weeks for the game to kick off and we are but a few hours away. While last year's game was a snoozefest between the dominant LSU and Alabama defenses, we're hoping Manti Te'o and Notre Dame can give us an exciting game against the SEC powerhouse.
However, with Notre Dame's No. 1 scoring defense going up against Alabama's No. 2 scoring defense, we could be in for another defensive stalemate. Alabama's lone loss came to Texas A&M, which was led by Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel. Under Nick Saban they've built their burgeoning dynasty (if the Tide wins, that's three BCS Titles in the last four years) on a ferocious and fast defense that gives up only 10.7 ppg. This year, the AJ McCarron-led offense has notched 38.5 ppg, ranking them 18th in the nation in scoring.
The underdog Irish, led by linebacker Te'o allow just 10.3 ppg, but have Everett Golson at quarterback, who as at time had to be pulled this year in favor of backup Tommy Rees. With a lack of experience and consistency at QB, the Irish D will have to keep the game close and play a near mistake-free game in order to stand a chance. While we think Alabama will likely win this game, here are the keys to victory for each team from Sports Illustrated.
Notre Dame's Keys To Victory
Alabama's Keys To Victory