Coaches' intel on BCS title game

Can Nick Marshall and the Auburn Tigers get their rushing attack going against Florida State? John Reed/USA TODAY Sports

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. -- A year ago, coaches I polled predicted (correctly) that Alabama would beat Notre Dame in the BCS National Championship, although they thought the final outcome would be a lot closer than the 42-14 rout that took place. Most coaches I've spoken with are anticipating a closer BCS title game this time around, though they do believe Florida State is the better team with more talent and depth.

What’s the scouting report for the final installment of the BCS championship? And what is Auburn’s best chance to complete its “season of destiny"?

Here are some thoughts on the BCS title game from several coaches.

Coach: “It all comes down to Florida State’s defense. If those guys stuff Auburn and the offense can’t stay on the field, it could be a long day.”

The Tigers talk a lot about possessing the ball, extending drives even if they don't score on them. Auburn's coaches told me they scored too quickly at times during the season, wearing out their defense early in games.

Put another way, the BCS title game will be like every other recent big game for Auburn: If the Tigers can run, they’ll be in it.