Tonight we have the Alabama Crimson Tide of the Southeastern Conference against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish who are only one of four independent NCAA FBS teams playing for the BCS title. As I have done for the other 34 bowl games this season, here is how each team looks in terms of productivity over this season using the NCAA FBS Production Model.
Alabama is currently 12-1 while playing against an average strength of schedule. Alabama's strength of schedule equals 61.54 which is slightly less than the average overall (as of the end of the regular season) of 66.73, but is still within one standard deviation of the mean, and thus still similar in a statistical sense to most of the other teams in the football bowl subdivision. As of the end of the regular season Alabama and 82 of the 124 FBS schools (including the four new teams that are playing basically an FBS schedule) played a similar schedule in terms of overall strength. If you quote that Alabama played Georgia, Texas A&M and LSU (all top 40 teams), I will respond with Arkansas, Florida Atlantic, Missouri, Auburn and Western Carolina (all bottom 40 teams). That said, Alabama's best win was against currently ranked #7 Georgia in the SEC championship game and their only loss was to currently ranked #13 Texas A&M. Alabama is currently ranked as the #1 team overall in terms of productivity in the NCAA FBS Production Model with the #5 most productive offense and the #3 most productive defense.
Notre Dame is currently 12-0 while playing against a tougher strength of schedule as compared to the rest of the "league". Notre Dame's best win was against currently ranked #18 Stanford. Notre Dame is currently ranked as the #5 most productive team in the football bowl subdivision with the #50 ranked offense and the #1 ranked defense in the nation.
Given that Alabama is more productive than Notre Dame, the model "predicts" that Alabama will be declared the national champion by winning this game.