Notre Dame stepped onto the Sun Life Stadium turf and hoped it would find a way to will itself to victory. By the first quarter it was obvious that the Fighting Irish were outmatched and that Alabama had already won the real title game when it took home the SEC Championship in December.
The game was never close with Alabama jumping to an early lead in the first. Alabama was up by 14 before the second quarter began, and quickly scored at the 14:56 mark in the second following a Notre Dame fumble making it 21-0.
It was never close, and Notre Dame looked lost from kickoff.
The three toughest games for Alabama came inside conference play this season. Even after starting the year in Dallas against then-No. 8 Michigan, no team came close to beating the Tide out of conference.
LSU and Georgia came scary close, and Texas A&M was able to find a way to victory in Tuscaloosa this year. It was the Tide’s only loss of the season.
Making it through the SEC with only one loss is impressive. There is no doubt that a one-loss SEC team is better than most any undefeated team you can throw in its way.
In fact, some two-loss SEC teams could beat the rest of the teams in the country and it shows with the final Associated Press College Football Top 25 poll.
The SEC is the cream of the crop in college football and the nation has taken notice.
Tied for No. 5 in the final AP poll is Georgia, the Crimson Tide’s opponent in the SEC title game.
Georgia was just a few yards away from landing in the national title game, and the outcome would have been much of the same. Watching the Georgia and Alabama game was a treat for pure college football fans.
It was a gritty win for the Tide that saw momentum swings and extremely talented football teams battling their guts out.
While the Fighting Irish gave it their all, they were outmatched at nearly every level. Manti Te’o has been labeled the country’s top linebacker all season, but against Alabama he looked mediocre at best. Cameron Lawrence of Mississippi State had a better game against Alabama than Te’o.
This game showed that there is the SEC and everyone else when college football is discussed. The SEC is on another level and the future playoffs won’t do much to separate this conference from the top.
As much as the average college football fan might have hoped that Notre Dame was as good as the 12-0 record showed, Alabama proved that it was simply that much better.
Last year the fact that LSU and Alabama landed in the title game infuriated the masses. Now the matchup makes perfect sense.
The future of college football will be surrounded by the outcome of the SEC title. As much as the rest of the country may hate to admit it, the real national title game happened at the Georgia Dome at the beginning of December.
The showdown in Miami was just pomp and circumstance for the masses.