Only one major college football team finished the season undefeated and it wasn't Alabama. So do the Ohio State Buckeyes deserve a share of the national title?
"That's a tough question," Ohio State coach Urban Meyer told USA TODAY Sports. "After today's performance it sure is clear who the best team in the country is. I don't think there's a shot but I don't really understand how it works either."
The Buckeyes still could grab a share of the national title if they are ranked No. 1 in The Associated Press poll, though that scenario appears unlikely. The Buckeyes were ranked No. 3 in the AP behind Notre Dame and Alabama respectively entering the BCS title game. Ohio State (12-0) was barred from postseason play due to NCAA sanctions.
As Meyer watched Alabama (13-1) crush Notre Dame (12-1) to win the Bowl Championship Series title on Monday night, the former Utah coach tried not to think about the what-ifs. As in, would it have been a more competitive game if the Buckeyes had played?
"That's all speculative. I can't say that," Meyer said. "I have a lot of respect for the Notre Dame team. I am somewhat surprised. I thought it would be more of a low-scoring game because Notre Dame's defense has been good all year."
Meyer said he isn't sure if his 2013 team, which will be eligible for the postseason, will have what it takes to reach the title game. "I'll find out when I get back," Meyer said.
Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly was one of four coaches announced Monday as winners of the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year award. Joining Kelly the Football Bowl Subdivision winner as honorees was Willie Fritz of Sam Houston State (Football Championship Subdivision); Peter Rossomando of New Haven (Division II) and Glenn Caruso of St. Thomas, Minn. (Division III).