When it comes to Alabama, Notre Dame and college football, there just isn't much love.
Alabama will show Notre Dame just how much it loves the Fighting Irish when they battle for the BCS National Championship on Monday night, writes Yahoo!'s Pat Forde:
"There is a real defensiveness in the South in general, but Alabama in particular, about everything north of the Mason-Dixon Line," said Wayne Flynt, the founding editor of the Encylopedia of Alabama and professor emeritus of History at Auburn. "And that includes Notre Dame, which is a huge image of success in America.
"When you rank in the bottom five in the nation ... in almost every quality-of-life category, and get hammered in the national media about how backward you are, you sort of get a 5,000-pound chip on your shoulder. We don't excel in almost any other category than college football - and we're kind of gangbusters in that.
"There's one team that vies for supremacy with Alabama in college football. That's Notre Dame, which is the ultimate example of ‘The Other,' to use a sociological term."
The hatred elevates even more considering Notre Dame is the No. 1 team in the nation and a perfect 12-0.
Despite the top-team claim, the Crimson Tide are an 8 1/2-point favorite for the championship game. Alabama averages 38.5 points per game, while Notre Dame averages just 26.8.
Alabama's only loss this season came to Texas A&M and Heisman-winner Johnny Manziel on Nov. 10, 29-24. The Crimson Tide finished their regular season with a big win over No. 3 Georgia in the SEC Championship game, 32-28.
Notre Dame picked up four wins over Top 25 teams this season, including a 20-13 win over No. 4 Stanford on Oct. 13. The Irish also beat No. 10 Michigan State, No. 18 Michigan and No. 8 Oklahoma.
The championship game will be Monday at 8:30 p.m. ET.