Maisel: Notre Dame has returned in style

NORMAN, Okla. -- Notre Dame's style of football is as fashionable as a crew cut, as stylish as an Oldsmobile. And if those references seem out of date, that's because it has been some time since the Fighting Irish have been relevant this late in the college football season. Relevant, as in crystal-football relevant.

That's right, boys and girls: This is what the fuss is all about. All of you who have wondered for the past decade, when Fighting Irish became a synonym for 7-6, why so much attention is paid to the guys with golden helmets, buckle your seat belts.

After the way that No. 5 Notre Dame came into Memorial Stadium and dismantled No. 8 Oklahoma, 30-13, the Fighting Irish are back, and they will bring to the BCS everything that BCS haters love to hate.

When Notre Dame is in the national championship discussion, the college football world spins a little faster. For the next five weeks, the attention that will be directed toward the Irish will be easy to understand -- and hard to digest.

Notre Dame, like the New York Yankees, evokes strong emotions. Unlike the Yankees, however, the Irish are now in a beauty pageant. (And, unlike the Yankees, the Irish can hit. But that's another story.) On its best days, the BCS selects the teams that play for the national championship by the use of -- let's use a 21st-century word -- crowdsourcing.

For Ivan Maisel's full column, click here.