When you are a team that has a history of success, there are often lofty expectations piled on you that are hard to reach. That seems to be the case for the 2016 version of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, as they are off to a 1-3 start, and are already officially out of the playoff picture. That is simply not good enough for a team that was expected to be very good this year, and that start has already seen defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder given his marching papers. While the season is essentially over for Notre Dame, the rest of the way will serve as a real test that will show what this team is made of. Will they rise up and play hard the rest of the way, or will they fold and end up with a losing season? We won’t know the answer to that until later in the years, but we will get a good idea this weekend when the Irish head to East Rutherford for a neutral site game versus the Syracuse Orange. Notre Dame come into this one as a 10-point betting odds favorite.
Here’s A Closer Look At The Week 5 College Football Fighting Irish Vs Orange Expert Picks
When: Saturday, October 1 at 12 PM EST
Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford
Live Stream: Watch ESPN
NCAAF Odds: TBA
Why bet on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Heading into the 2016 college football season, it’s fair to say that fans of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish were envisioning a top 4 spot and a playoff appearance, but they are now at the point where they are not even guaranteed a bowl game. Offensively, the Irish look pretty solid, but it’s their defense that is routinely being picked apart. They are being destroyed on the ground, and have given up over 200 yards rushing in each of their last two games. All told, the Irish gave up almost 500 yards in total offense to the Duke Blue Devils last week, losing 38-35 in a game where they came in as 21.5-point favorites. They are going to give up points against Syracuse, but they should also be able to move the ball against them quite easily.
Why bet on the Syracuse Orange
The key to Syracuse getting the win this weekend is protecting the football. In the two games that they have won this season, they only turned the ball over once. Compare that to their two losses, where they gave the ball away 5 times in total. The Irish may have some defensive issues, but they can hurt you on offense, and they will do damage if the Orange cannot protect the football. Amba Etta-Tawo is the man that the Irish are going to have to keep an eye on, as the transfer from Maryland has been lighting it up at the WR positon. He had 270 receiving yards, a school record, last weekend, and has crossed the 100-yard mark in all 4 games this season.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
I think we are in for a bit of a shootout here, and I like Notre Dame to be the ones who come out on top. This is their chance to make a statement, and I think they will take it.