Jason Kersey, OU beat writer
NOTRE DAME 23, ALABAMA 20
Notre Dame reminds me of Oklahoma's 2000 title team. A traditional power that's long been dormant, the Irish continue finding ways to win — even when they aren't playing their best. Like Bob Stoops' second OU team, I think Notre Dame reclaims its past glory Monday with a victory over the one-loss defending national champion in South Florida.
Mike Baldwin, Big 12 beat writer
Manti Te'o and the Irish defense is good enough to post an upset, but the Crimson Tide narrowly escapes. 'Bama quarterback AJ McCarron makes a big play late to spark a comeback.
Gina Mizell, OSU beat writer
ALABAMA 21, NOTRE DAME 20
Though these are two programs many college football fans hate, there's a lot to love about this matchup. Two elite defenses. Two fantastic coaches. Two great fight songs. But in a game that's likely to be low-scoring and come down to the fourth quarter, I like the team with the more experienced quarterback. That's Alabama's AJ McCarron, who had a breakout performance in last year's BCS title game. Look for him to lead a game-winning or game-clinching drive in the final period.
Stephanie Kuzydym, OU beat writer
NOTRE DAME 35, ALABAMA 24
Even though they are undefeated and ranked No. 1, the Irish are the underdogs. Brian Kelly and Heisman finalist Manti Te'o are going to sneak a few surprises into South Beach with multiple interceptions and defensive line stands that stop the Tide.
John Helsley, OSU beat writer
NOTRE DAME 20, ALABAMA 17
This isn't the 'Bama we're used to seeing recently. Still good, but not all-time good. And it's an Irish team that matches up physically, setting up the kind of close, low-scoring game that the Irish thrive in. Notre Dame makes another stand, the prepares to return No. 1 for 2013.
Jenni Carlson, columnist
NOTRE DAME 23-21
This one will live up to all the pregame hype. A fantastic matchup becomes a fantastic game. Notre Dame has found a way all season to win every time it's been on the field. It does so again, with the defense making one final, last-minute stand.
Berry Tramel, columnist
Both teams play great defense, so the game could come down to two or three little plays, not necessarily big plays. But Alabama has the edge at quarterback, with AJ McCarron, and the edge in big-game experience. This is the third national title game for Alabama seniors.