If you can’t make it into the final 4 in the college football playoffs, the next best thing you can do is ensure that you at least get a trip to a high profile bowl game. The Notre Dame Irish were pegged as a bit of a dark horse coming into the 2016 college football season, with many pundits believing they might be able to sneak into a postseason spot. With their current record now sitting at 2-4, they are potentially looking at missing out on a bowl game altogether. It has been a disaster for the Irish, and this weekend will see them welcome in a fellow struggler in the shape of the Stanford Cardinal. Things started well enough for Stanford, but they will be taking the trip to South Bend having lost back to back games, and seeing the wheels start to come off their season. This has been a traditionally tight match-up, and the bookies tend to think that this one will be more of the same, with the Irish favored by 3 points. Find the latest betting lines here.
A Closer Look At The Cardinal at Fighting Irish College Football Winning Favorites
When: Saturday, October 15 at 7:30 PM EST
Where: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend
Live Stream: NBC Sports Live
NCAAF Odds: TBA
Why bet on the Stanford Cardinal
The Stanford Cardinal are not what you would call an offensive powerhouse, but things have been pretty poor over the last couple of weeks, even when judged against those comparatively low standards. Stanford have managed just 22 total points in their last 2 games, and while that is bad enough, they also gave up a total of 86 points in those outings, making things look even bleaker. The run game disappeared in those losses, and that is what has hurt them. The good news this weekend is that they are going against an Irish run defense that is as solid as Swiss cheese. If the Cardinal can establish the run early, they might just spring the minor upset.
Why bet on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish
This is a team capable of moving the ball on offense, particularly through the air, but they have also become prone to the turnover this season. They have turned the ball over 3 times in 3 of their last 4 games, which makes things even tougher when you are already a team lacking in confidence. The low point of the season so far may well have come at North Carolina State, where they lost 10-3 in a game that was marred by torrential rain delivered by Hurricane Matthew. It was a loss that was somewhat fitting, as coach Brian Kelly is sitting right in the eye of the storm right now, as the Irish faithful are not a happy bunch.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
These two teams have split their last two meetings, with those games decided by 3 and 2 points, respectively. I expect this to be another close one, and I think that Stanford might just do enough to deliver the slight upset.