Will probably be a rematch of the 2013 BCS Championship Sport on Friday when two of faculty soccer’s most iconic manufacturers meet on the sector of play as No. 1 Alabama and No. four Notre Dame collide within the Rose Bowl, one of many two school soccer playoffs. semifinals on New 12 months’s Day. There is definitely no love between the Crimson Tide and Preventing Irish, and Friday’s recreation will pit the nation’s greatest offense in opposition to one of many tightest defenses in school soccer.
Whereas the January 1 kickoff could also be regular for the Rose Bowl, the setting definitely is not as the sport moved from Pasadena, California for the second time and for the primary time since 1942. That yr, the Rose Bowl in Durham, North Carolina, after the assault on Pearl Harbor. A singular setting for a bowl with a lot historical past amongst exhibits which have 28 nationwide championships mixed appears acceptable for a 2020 season that was something however regular. Nevertheless, by way of all of the trials, twists and turns of 2020, we ended up with Alabama and Notre Dame rising to the highest of faculty soccer.
Regardless of being two of probably the most iconic packages in school soccer, they’ve solely performed seven occasions earlier than Saturday. The final time they met was on the 2013 BCS Nationwide Championship when Crimson Tide crushed the Irish 42-14. Will historical past repeat itself on Saturday night time or will the Irish overcome the issue and make it to the CFP Nationwide Championship? Let’s take a better take a look at the tales and matchups beneath.
Sport: Rose Bowl – School Soccer Playoffs Semifinal
Date: Friday, January 1 | Time: four pm ET
Location: AT&T Stadium – Arlington, Texas
TV: ESPN | Reside broadcast: fuboTV (Strive it without cost)
Alabama: One of the crucial prolific offenses within the present’s historical past has produced two Heisman Trophy finalists and 5 first-team AP All-Individuals with operating again Najee Harris, offensive sort out Alex Leatherwood and heart Landon Dickerson becoming a member of quarterback Mac Jones. and huge receiver DeVonta Smith, who was additionally named AP Participant of the 12 months and SEC Offensive Participant of the 12 months. It isn’t stunning to see that almost half of the locations for first-team offense within the fingers of Alabama gamers when you think about not solely the place Crimson Tide stands in its personal historical past, but additionally how the group as a unit has been elite every. time it hits the sector. . Alabama’s offense averaged 49.5 factors per recreation through the 10-game common season and ended the yr with 52 factors and 605 yards of offense in a victory in opposition to Florida within the SEC Championship Sport. It was the seventh time within the 11 video games of the 2020 marketing campaign that Tide eclipsed 500 yards of offense and the third time greater than 600 yards of offense.
Maybe no participant higher symbolizes Nick Saban’s embrace of successful on offense than Jones, who has 4 of 10 video games through which an Alabama passer has eclipsed 400 yards. And whereas the whole yardage (three,739 in 11 video games) may match a few of the Air Raid offenses of the early 21st century, this can be a extremely environment friendly passing offense with Jones having the most effective full passing file and greatest passer ranking. within the nation.
Our girl: The ACC’s first and solely yr of full membership in soccer can solely be seen as successful for the Preventing Irish, even when it did not include a championship. There was a lot intrigue about what would occur when Notre Dame confronted a full convention schedule and usually in contrast itself to its convention friends, and the outcome was close to complete domination. After going 10-Zero within the common season with a 9-Zero file in opposition to ACC foes, he swept the awards season. Kelly was named ACC Coach of the 12 months, linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah was named ACC Defensive Participant of the 12 months, operating again Kyren Williams was named ACC Rookie and Offensive Rookie of the 12 months, and offensive lineman Liam Eichenberg received the ACC Jacobs Lockout Trophy. In complete, 18 Notre Dame gamers obtained All-ACC honors and victories in opposition to Clemson and North Carolina not solely proved their standing in opposition to the remainder of the league, however helped maintain the Preventing Irish within the prime 4 after dropping. in opposition to Clemson within the ACC Championship Sport. .
But when the regular-season dominance in opposition to the ACC affirmed Notre Dame’s place as among the finest packages of the school soccer playoff period, the defeat of the convention title recreation introduced again a widely known chorus. of doubts concerning the contest for the nationwide championship. Nobody in sports activities will dispute the excessive flooring that Kelly has established in South Bend, Indiana for the previous a number of years, however this showdown in opposition to Alabama will function a judgment on the roof of this system. That is not notably honest to Kelly or the gamers who’ve shined all season, particularly contemplating the energy of this yr’s Alabama crew, however it’s the best way issues work out in a reputation-driven sport like school soccer. .
Rose Bowl Prediction, Select
Alabama Crimson Tide -18.5
Notre Dame has been too sturdy, too veteran-led, and too ready to reply to the problem all season for me to suppose we’ll see one other crush just like the 2013 BCS Championship Sport. I’ve little doubt Alabama will assault early and can seemingly be in management throughout many of the recreation, however these are too many daggum factors for a university soccer playoff semifinal between two groups which might be 21-1 on the yr. Choose: Notre Dame +20 | Alabama 45, Notre Dame 28