Everything about the BCS championship between No. 1 Notre Dame and No. 2 Alabama seems larger than life.
Not only do these schools stand among the best ever in college football, they also lead the pack in celebrating that success and in investing for the future.
If ever college football presented a heavyweight event it’s the Fighting Irish against the Crimson Tide.
So here, then, is a tale of the tape for Monday’s marquee matchup in Miami.
_ FOOTBALL BUILDING
ALABAMA: The Mal M. Moore Athletic Facility, named for the current athletic director, has a 20,000-square-foot strength and conditioning center _ which is soon to be replaced _ plus aquatic rehabilitation pools. The building also houses athletic administrators and the football offices.
NOTRE DAME: The Guglielmino Athletics Complex, named after the booster who funded it, has a 25,000-square-foot health and fitness center, meeting rooms and the football offices. Plus, the Morse Recruiting lounge with championship banners for Notre Dame’s “11 consensus national championships.”
ALABAMA: The “Hall of Champions” overlooks the lobby on the second floor of the athletic facility. It has trophy cases for the Crimson Tide’s 14 national champions _ including a spot where `Bama is hoping 2012 can be added _ and a large case for the 23 Southeastern Conference title teams. Prominently perched on a marble pedestal is Mark Ingram’s 2009 Heisman Trophy, the program’s first.
NOTRE DAME: The lobby of the Gug, as the athletics complex is called, is basically one of college football’s largest trophy cases. The first thing visitors see is Notre Dame’s last national championship trophy, the coaches’ trophy the Irish received after the 1988 season. To the left, across the wall are seven Heisman Trophies. No other school has won more.
_ WEIGHT ROOM
ALABAMA: A new weight room is nearly completed. Trustees approved the $9.1 million, 34,495-square-foot, two-story strength and conditioning facility in August that will connect the athletic building and the indoor practice facility. It’s expected to be ready in early February.