Alabama routs Notre Dame for college football title
Eddie Lacy rushed for 140 yards and scored twice and freshman Amari Cooper had two touchdown catches as Alabama (13-1) bolted to a 28-0 halftime lead to hand Notre Dame (12-1) its first loss and become the first school to win three national championships in four years since Nebraska (1994-97).
The Crimson Tide gave coach Nick Saban his fourth national crown - one was at Louisiana State - by scoring on their first three possessions against a defense led by Heisman Trophy runner-up Manti Te'o that had surrendered a nation-low 10.3 points per game.
Alabama also extended the Southeastern Conference's BCS title-winning streak to seven years in a matchup that was eerily similar to last year's title clash, when the Crimson Tide humbled previously unbeaten and top-ranked LSU, 21-0.
McCarron finished 20-of-28 for 264 yards and guided Alabama to six long touchdowns drives, including four of at least 80 yards. T.J. Yeldon ran for 108 yards and a touchdown as the Tide rolled up 529 yards of total offense against a ballyhooed defense that had permitted only 10 touchdowns all season.
Notre Dame deferred after winning the opening coin toss - and it turned out to be its only victory of the night. Lacy's 20-yard touchdown run capped a five-play, 82-yard opening drive, and Alabama quickly piled on with McCarron's 3-yard scoring pass to Michael Williams and Yeldon's 1-yard burst for a 21-0 cushion four seconds into the second quarter.
The Crimson Tide turned it into a laugher when McCarron threw an 11-yard scoring pass to Lacy with 31 seconds left in the half and a 34-yard strike to Cooper midway through the third quarter ballooned the lead to 35-0. Cooper also had a 19-yard touchdown catch and finished with six receptions for 105 yards.
NOTES: Notre Dame broke up the shutout on Everett Golson's 2-yard run with 4:08 left in the third quarter. Golson completed 21 of 36 passes for 270 yards with one touchdown and one interception, with much of the yardage coming after the game was out of hand. ... McCarron's four scoring passes gave him 49 for his career, moving him past John Parker Wilson for No. 1 on the school's all-time list. ... The Fighting Irish entered the game as the only FBS team to not allow a scoring drive of more than 75 yards and exited by allowing the most points in the school's storied bowl history. ... Alabama added to its school record with its eight 40-point game of the season.