After six straight BCS National Championships, SEC fatigue has taken over college football. Fans from around the country are simply sick of SEC fans pounding their chests with conference pride.
You saw why SEC fans are so proud of their conference for about four hours under the big top of the Georgia Dome in the 2012 SEC Championship Game on Saturday afternoon.
Alabama's 32-28 win over Georgia wasn't just a slugfest. It wasn't just an old-school SEC game that featured two punishing rushing attacks.
It was two heavyweight fighters standing toe-to-toe and throwing haymakers back and forth for 60 full minutes of football. To put it simply, it was the game of the year...and second place isn't even close.
Six lead changes, 463 combined rushing yards, three 100-yard rushers and eight yards deciding the fate of two elite football teams.
It brought to life the graphic above, which made the rounds on the Internet this week.
That's not to say that Notre Dame is an afterthought. It isn't. But Georgia and Alabama came into the SEC Championship Game with everything on the line, and the result was grown-man football at its finest.
All week long, the SEC Championship Game was appropriately referred to as a de facto national semifinal. Great teams excel on the game's biggest stages.
The Bulldogs and Crimson Tide didn't disappoint.
I hate this cliche, but it was an appropriate description of this game—"big-time players make big-time plays in big games."
Was the SEC Championship Game the "Game of the Year"?
Alabama running back Eddie Lacy with 181 rushing yards and two touchdowns, Georgia running back Todd Gurley with 122 yards and two touchdowns, Alabama running back T.J. Yeldon with 153 yards and a touchdown and two offensive lines imposing their will on the opponent.
That's football, and it's why the SEC is head and shoulders above every other conference.
Does that mean that Alabama will cruise over the Irish in the BCS National Championship Game? Not necessarily. But one thing is certain: Alabama is battle-tested.
If you don't believe me, watch the 2012 SEC Championship Game again.