Alabama has a chance to make history in this year’s national-championship game, and with a victory over Notre Dame, Nick Saban would unquestionably become the greatest coach of the BCS Era.
The first BCS title game was played to cap off the 1998 season, and since then, there have been several great champions and coaches who have achieved remarkable success.
Bobby Bowden led Florida State to three consecutive title games between 1998 and 200. Larry Coker took Miami to two consecutive national-championship games in 2001 and 2002, while Pete Carroll did the same with USC in 2004 and 2005.
Bob Stoops has taken Oklahoma to college football’s marque contest three times, while Mack Brown has led Texas there twice.
But all have these coaches have one thing in common: They all have losses with a national title on the line. Saban does not.
The only other coach in the BCS era to reach multiple national-championship games without losing is Urban Meyer, who won titles in 2006 and 2008. If there is any coach in nation whose résumé could hope to compare to Saban’s, it is Meyer.
After winning two national titles in three years, Meyer took a break from coaching to spend time with his family but returned to football this season with Ohio State. He led to Buckeyes to an undefeated season despite NCAA sanctions placed on the program.
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Meyer is certainly on track to take Ohio State back to being a national contender, but as of now, his accomplishments would not come near Saban’s if Alabama wins on January 7.
The Alabama boss won his first national title with LSU during the 2003 season. After a brief stint in the NFL, he returned to the SEC to turn the Crimson Tide into a national powerhouse.
He has succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest expectations, and a victory would make Alabama the first team in BCS history to win three national titles. To make the feat even more impressive, it will be the school’s third championship in just four years.
Saban is already the only coach to win a national championship at two different schools and to win three BCS titles. While he may already be the greatest coach in the BCS era, a win over Notre Dame would put his track record completely beyond comparison to any of his peers'.