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How many national championships does Alabama have?

How many national championships does Alabama have? Does it have the most?

Forget the BCS, the real debate in college football is over championships in the past.

The last 12 years have been relatively calm regarding championship claims.

Since there are no playoffs in the highest level of college football, there have been years where multiple teams could lay claim to a title based on any selection organization.

Some of those groups selected winners at the time, while others have been done retroactively.

Depending on one's source, Alabama has 13, 12, eight or one national championship.

The school claims 13, including 1925, '26, '30, '34, '41, '61, '64, '65, '73, '78, '79, '92 and 2009.

Most groups drop the 1941 Alabama team, which went 9-2 in favor of 8-0 Minnesota. Of the dozen or so championship groups, only the Helms Athletic Foundation awarded its title that year to the Tide.

Alabama has eight championships in the poll era, which starts in 1936. In that time period the Associated Press and the coaches have each selected an annual championship.

The polls have decided on a single champion all but 11 of those seasons.

Finally, Alabama's victory over Texas on Thursday was its first BCS championship. Those games started for the 1998 season, with no school winning more than two titles.

By nearly any measure, Alabama has been one of the most successful teams in history.

Only Princeton, 28 titles, and Yale, 26, claim more championships (with all of theirs coming outside of the modern era.)

On the list of generally recognized titles, Princeton (24), Yale (19), Alabama (12) and Notre Dame (12) lead the way.

Alabama (8) and Notre Dame (8) are the best teams in the poll era, edging out Oklahoma (7) and Southern Cal (7).

_Joshua Wood