The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have played at least five ACC football opponents for many years now, however it’s never been with a chance to win a trophy. That will change on Saturday when they face the Duke Blue Devils in the first-ever conference game for one of the most recognizable brands in college football.
ND has fought to maintain its independence for decades, despite the dramatically changing nature of the sport. Though they’ve never won a game in the College Football Playoff or Bowl Championship Series (0-6), the fact they’ve even been allowed to compete shows independence has been working for them.
But in the year of Covid-19, playing a league slate where all their other sports compete made the most sense. The Irish also return starting quarterback Ian Book, who gets a new coordinator in former Notre Dame starting quarterback Tommy Rees.
On the other side of this history, head coach David Cutcliffe will kickoff his 13th season at Duke on Saturday. Although his record is just 72-79, considering where the Blue Devils were before his arrival that’s very impressive. The Blue Devils were picked to finish 12th in the ACC coming into the season, and grad transfer Chase Brice goes from being Trevor Lawrence’s backup at Clemson to the starter in Durham.
For a deeper dive about the X’s and O’s of the game, check out our game film preview here.
Duke Blue Devils (0-0, 0-0 ACC) vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish (0-0, 0-0 ACC)
Where: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, IN
When: 2:30 p.m.
Spread: Duke + 20.5 (22% of action, 18% of bets) Notre Dame -20.5 (78% of action, 82% of bets)
Total: Over/Under 54.5 (over: 39% of action, 66% of bets)
Money Line: Duke +900, Notre Dame -2000
Duke: 87 (82 offense, 90 defense)
Notre Dame: 71 (115 offense, 34 defense)
Overall: 65% (65 of 130 FBS)
Coaching Staff: New OL & CB coaches
Offense: 7 starters returning, new QB (transfer Chase Brice)
Defense: 7 starters returning
Offensive line games started: 49
Overall: 59% (83 of 130 FBS)
Coaching Staff: New TE, CB coaches. Internal Promotion at OC (Tommy Rees)
Offense: 7 starters returning, including QB (Ian Book, 13 starts)
Defense: 5 starters returning
Offensive line games started: 59
Duke: 44th of 130
Notre Dame: 14th of 130
Duke: National Champion +50000, ACC Champion +10000
Notre Dame: National Champion +2200, ACC Champion +800
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