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NCAA Game Summary - Alabama vs. Notre Dame



(Monday, January 7th)

Final Score: (2) Alabama 42, (1) Notre Dame 14

Miami, FL (Sports Network) - AJ McCarron threw for 264 yards and four touchdowns as No. 2 Alabama earned a dominant 42-14 victory over top-ranked Notre Dame to capture its second straight BCS National Championship.

With the win, McCarron became the first-ever quarterback to win back-to-back BCS National Championships. Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban recorded his fourth title overall and third in the last four seasons.

"People talk about how the most difficult thing is to win your first championship. Really the most difficult is to win the next one, because there's always a feeling of entitlement, and the commitment that these guys made two days after we played LSU last year in the National Championship game to be a team, to set a goal to accomplish something of significance is really special for what they were able to accomplish," Saban said.

McCarron completed an efficient 20-of-28 passes, while Eddie Lacy added 140 yards and a touchdown on 20 carries to earn the offensive MVP award for Alabama (13-1), which captured its 11th national title.

T.J. Yeldon followed with 108 yards and a score on 21 carries, and Amari Cooper finished with 105 yards and a pair of touchdowns on six receptions in the victory.

Everett Golson completed 21-of-36 passes for 270 yards with a touchdown and an interception as the Fighting Irish (12-1) were denied their first undefeated season since 1988.

Notre Dame entered the game averaging 202.5 rushing yards a game, but Theo Riddick, Golson and Cierre Wood combined to pick up just 32 on the ground against Alabama's stout defense.

DaVaris Daniels paced all receivers with 115 yards on six catches in defeat.

"Congratulations to Alabama. They were the better team today," Notre Dame linebacker and Heisman Trophy runner-up Manti Te'o said.

Alabama received the ball first and immediately kicked off an impressive first half by picking up chunks of yards, as McCarron found Kevin Norwood deep down the right sideline for a 29-yard gain after making a play-action fake on the second play of the game.

Lacy reeled off a 10-yard run up the middle on the next play that had 15 yards tacked on for a facemask penalty. Two plays later, Lacy shrugged off a defender during a 20-yard touchdown run to hand the Crimson Tide the lead less than three minutes into the first quarter.

The 82-yard march was the longest drive Notre Dame's top-ranked scoring defense had allowed all season.

"We needed to come out and start fast, and that's always key for us, starting fast," said McCarron. "I'm just glad we got to set the tone, and it really set the tone for the rest of the game."

The Fighting Irish were held to a three-and-out on their first touch of the game when Tyler Eifert was ruled to not have full possession of a catch near the left sideline on a 3rd-and-2, and Alabama regained the ball at their own 39.

Lacy then converted a 3rd-and-1 with an 8-yard run to move the ball across midfield before McCarron converted another third down with a 7-yard strike to Marvin Shinn.

Faced with another 3rd-and-1 at the Notre Dame 23, Lacy avoided a defender in the backfield and rumbled through the Irish defense for a 20-yard gain.

On the next play, Michael Williams snuck behind the Notre Dame defense following a play-action fake by McCarron and easily hauled in a 3-yard touchdown, handing the Crimson Tide a 14-0 advantage with 6:14 left in the opening frame.

Alabama seemed to have recovered an Eifert fumble near the Notre Dame 30 on the next play from scrimmage, but a review showed his knee was down before he had the ball ripped out and the Irish retained possession.

Notre Dame would manage just one first down on the drive, though, and the Irish were forced to punt again.

McCarron found Norwood and Cooper on consecutive plays for gains of 25 and 11 yards, respectively, on the Crimson Tide's ensuing drive. Cooper then hauled in a 27-yard pass to place the ball at the Notre Dame six.

Yeldon capped the 8-play, 80-yard trek with a 1-yard push across the goal line on the first play of the second quarter.

Golson was able to connect with Daniels for a 31-yard gain on the Fighting Irish's next offensive play to move the ball inside Alabama territory for the first time, but they would manage just five more yards and Golson's deep pass attempt intended for T.J. Jones on a 4th-and-5 was broken up to turn the ball over on downs.

Notre Dame, however, was able to hold Alabama to its first punt of the game after a completed pass by McCarron that would have converted a 3rd-and-12 was called back for a holding penalty.

The teams traded punts from there until Alabama took over on offense at its own 29 with 3:43 left in the half. Yeldon ripped off a couple of 10-yard runs before McCarron found Christion Jones on a post for a gain of 27 yards, placing the ball at the Notre Dame 11.

Lacy grabbed a short pass on the next play and spun around a tackle attempt inside the 5-yard line en route to a touchdown with 31 seconds remaining in the half to give the Crimson Tide a 28-0 advantage at the break.

Notre Dame seemed poised to put together its first scoring drive of the game on the opening touch of the third quarter, as Golson connected with Daniels for a 21-yard gain before a 3-yard run by Riddick gave the Irish a fresh set of downs at the Alabama 36.

But two plays later, Golson had a deep pass attempt down the right sideline tipped into the air, and Alabama's Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix was able to get a foot down in bounds during a leaping interception at the 3-yard line.

Alabama capitalized on the turnover with a 10-play trek Lacy kept alive with a 3-yard run to convert a 4th-and-1 at the Notre Dame 37 and McCarron capped with a 34-yard touchdown pass to a wide-open Cooper on the right side of the field with 7:34 left in the third quarter.

The Fighting Irish were able to put an end to Alabama's shutout bid on the ensuing drive, a 9-play, 85-yard march ending with a 2-yard touchdown run by Golson on an option that made it a 35-7 game.

Earlier in the drive, Golson converted a 3rd-and-16 at the Notre Dame 37 with a 31-yard strike to T.J. Jones, and a roughing the passer penalty later on moved the ball into the Alabama red zone.

The Crimson Tide, however, got those points right back and ended any notion of a miraculous Notre Dame comeback with a lengthy 14-play drive that lasted nearly eight minutes, stretched into the fourth quarter and was finished with Cooper's 19-yard touchdown grab with 11:27 remaining in the contest.

Notre Dame answered with Riddick's 6-yard scoring catch on its next touch to cap the scoring.

"Alabama was the better football team, but I love the way our guys kept fighting and kept competing. They didn't quit at all," Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said.

Game Notes

Notre Dame had not allowed more than 26 points in a game all season ... Alabama improved to 6-4 all-time against top-ranked teams and 2-5 against Notre Dame ... Notre Dame fell to 5-1 all-time in No. 1 vs. No. 2 showdowns when sitting atop the national rankings ... The Crimson Tide improved to 62-3 when leading at the half under Saban ... The Fighting Irish were first team in the BCS era to reach the National Championship game after starting the season unranked. BYU is the lone team to start a season unranked and win a national title, accomplishing the feat in 1984 ... Alabama finished with 529 total yards, while the Irish ended with 302.

01/08 02:11:56 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
ECU 58
FRES 52
Final
CIN 59
NCCU 50
 
12:00pm Today
UNC
BUT
 
2:30pm Today
ECU
HAW
 
5:00pm Tonight
DUKE
FUR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
POR
 
7:00pm Tonight
NCSU
RICH
 
7:30pm Tonight
FLA
CAR
 
Final
WAS 102
ATL 106
Final
MIA 97
GSW 114
Final
MIL 98
DET 86
Final
NOP 89
SAC 99
Final
DEN 114
CHI 109
 
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
BRK
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
GSW
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
POR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLE
WAS
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
LAC
 
7:30pm Tonight
DAL
NYK
 
7:30pm Tonight
ATL
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
MIL
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
SAC
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
UTA
 
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
IND
 
9:00pm Tonight
PHO
DEN
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
MEM
 
Final
UMO 21
OHIO 24
 
Final
ECU 58
FRES 52
Final
ELON 74
MRGST 73
 
Final
MIZZ 61
PURD 82
Final
MAR 55
HAW 62
Final
UNF 77
LIB 57
 
Final
CHAM 85
BYU 121
Final
BUCK 58
MDES 55
Final
UGST 85
WCU 70
Final
UWGB 64
EVAN 62
Final
ARST 71
ALA 76
 
Final
OHIO 69
ARKPB 60
 
Final
UNH 75
BU 68
 
Final
OU 70
CHIST 57
Final
TOL 79
DET 82
Final
CLMB 57
FD 47
 
Final
QUIN 50
HART 54
 
Final
SFLA 71
HOF 70
Final
HARV 84
HOU 63
Final
BONA 79
JST 71
 
Final
STJOE 74
LIU 70
 
Final
SYR 70
GHND 37
 
Final
MLOWELL 102
MTIDA 57
 
Final
CIN 59
NCCU 50
 
Final
VT 54
NIOWA 73
Final
WOFF 82
OHVALLEY 54
 
Final
TEMPL 76
PENN 67
Final
RUTG 50
PETE 68
Final
BGU 62
SEMIZ 54
Final
LAS 73
Terriers 60
 
Final
UVA 79
TENST 36
Final
KENT 92
TXARL 44
Final
FSU 66
CITA 55
Final
PBY 63
TOCC 40
 
Final
COOK 56
TENNM 74
 
Final
WMARY 83
WILL 49
Final
USB 71
WKENT 61
 
Final
HIGH 88
WMPEACE 71
 
Final
SMU 72
ARK 78
Final
ARMY 80
BING 54
 
Final
CSOU 80
CARK 67
 
Final
UMBC 54
HOW 68
 
Final
ARZ 72
KYST 68
Final
OREG 63
VCU 77
Final
PSU 78
AKR 72
 
Final
SCST 92
CIU 55
 
Final
CREI 75
EILL 53
Final
ALAAM 61
JVST 67
 
Final
ABCHRIST 91
JCHR 65
 
Final
TXSA 57
LOYC 71
 
Final
NDST 64
MNCROOK 63
 
Final
NEB 80
NEOM 67
Final
VANDY 63
NORST 53
 
Final
STLU 57
NCAT 54
 
Final
MTST 65
NARZ 53
Final
TTU 75
NWST 64
 
Final
TULA 74
SOUTH 59
 
Final
ILLCH 87
STXAVIER 76
 
Final
TEX 78
RFLSH 46
 
Final
BRAD 52
TAMCC 38
 
Final
SMISS 72
TROY 70
Final
DRAK 73
IUPUI 60
 
Final
ARKST 58
LAM 63
 
Final
FLGC 62
USF 47
 
Final
COL 68
AFA 53
 
Final
IDAHO 75
BSU 86
 
Final
GRCN 64
BUF 80
 
Final
ORU 52
LALAF 76
 
Final
CHAR 74
MIAMI 77
 
Final
ISU 63
MD 72
 
Final
UMO 46
NW 55
 
Final
SACST 97
BRISTOL 63
 
Final
MICH 55
VILL 60
 
Final
SDST 74
PITT 57
 
2nd
USC 42
CSFU 32
 
2nd
STAN 54
DEL 26
 
12:00pm Today
UNC
BUT
 
12:00pm Today
FRES
MAR
 
12:00pm Today
CHAT
RMU
 
12:00pm Today
EMICH
ROCH
 
1:30pm Today
MRGST
LIB
 
2:00pm Today
HAMP
AMER
 
2:00pm Today
BEL
DEN
 
2:00pm Today
UMASS
NE
 
2:00pm Today
JMU
SHU
 
2:00pm Today
KNST
SAMF
 
2:30pm Today
ECU
HAW
 
2:30pm Today
CHAM
MIZZ
 
2:30pm Today
OKLA
UCLA
 
2:30pm Today
CCAR
LAMON
 
4:00pm Today
ELON
UNF
 
4:00pm Today
UWMIL
ORU
 
4:30pm Today
WCU
CHIST
 
5:00pm Tonight
DUKE
FUR
 
5:00pm Tonight
BYU
PURD
 
6:00pm Tonight
EVAN
USF
 
7:00pm Tonight
COL
GTDNS
 
7:00pm Tonight
VERM
BRY
 
7:00pm Tonight
OSU
CAMP
 
7:00pm Tonight
CORN
CAN
 
7:00pm Tonight
LOU
CLST
 
7:00pm Tonight
UCF
DAVID
 
7:00pm Tonight
IONA
DELST
 
7:00pm Tonight
OU
UGST
 
7:00pm Tonight
TOWS
GOUCHER
 
7:00pm Tonight
ND
GRAM
 
7:00pm Tonight
YALE
LAF
 
7:00pm Tonight
GWU
LONG
 
7:00pm Tonight
VT
UMO
 
7:00pm Tonight
WAKE
MNTER
 
7:00pm Tonight
NAVY
PSUHARRIS
 
7:00pm Tonight
NCSU
RICH
 
7:00pm Tonight
MINN
STJ
 
7:00pm Tonight
JVU
TRINBAPT
 
7:00pm Tonight
YOUNG
UMKC
 
7:00pm Tonight
UAB
WISC
 
7:30pm Tonight
TBA
TBA
 
7:30pm Tonight
WVU
VMI
 
8:00pm Tonight
DEP
LEH
 
8:00pm Tonight
UNT
MVSU
 
8:00pm Tonight
MARS
MORE
 
8:00pm Tonight
TCU
RAD
 
8:00pm Tonight
SELA
TENT
 
8:00pm Tonight
SMU
TXSOU
 
8:00pm Tonight
UTAH
TXPA
 
8:00pm Tonight
LMU
UCR
 
8:00pm Tonight
SCAR
UNCA
 
8:00pm Tonight
SD
WAYNEST
 
8:30pm Tonight
UWGB
FLGC
 
8:30pm Tonight
IOWA
NILL
 
9:00pm Tonight
ORST
AUB
 
9:00pm Tonight
MONT
CARROLLMT
 
9:00pm Tonight
SUTAH
EKENT
 
9:00pm Tonight
NMST
FAM
 
9:00pm Tonight
WYO
STET
 
9:05pm Tonight
EWASH
NKENTUCKY
 
9:05pm Tonight
IDST
WLVRN
 
9:30pm Tonight
GEOR
UF
 
9:30pm Tonight
GONZ
UGA
 
9:30pm Tonight
NIOWA
NW
 
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
CPSL
 
10:00pm Tonight
TBA
TBA
 
10:00pm Tonight
UCD
UTST
 
10:30pm Tonight
NDAK
ALAST
 
11:00pm Tonight
CSNO
PORST
 
11:30pm Tonight
AKAN
PAC
 
11:30pm Tonight
OKST
TULSA
 
Final
CLB 2
WIN 4
Final
NAS 4
LOS 3
 
Final
STL 2
OTT 3
 
Final
DAL 3
EDM 2
 
Final
ARI 3
COL 4
 
3rd
ANA 3
CAL 1
 
3rd
VAN 1
NJD 0
 
7:00pm Tonight
NYI
WAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
BUF
WIN
 
7:30pm Tonight
FLA
CAR
 
7:30pm Tonight
TAM
NYR
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
PHI
 
7:30pm Tonight
PIT
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
LOS
 
9:00pm Tonight
COL
CHI
 
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
CAL