Notre Dame Fighting Irish 2021 College Football Preview
Created July 19, 2021
Record – 10-2
ATS – 6-6
The Irish FIRED out of the chute and won their first ten games before falling in back-to-back games to the nation’s premier programs, Clemson (L 34-10) and ROLL TIDE (L 31-14). The highlight of the season had to be the mid-season win over those same Clemson Tigers in South Bend (W 47-40, 2OT). HATERZZ should note that they booked their fourth consecutive double-digit win season.
Let’s check in and see how things are shaping up for 2021.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish 2021 Outlook
The Irish brought a balanced offense to the table LY (#24 FBS rushing, #43 passing efficiency) and will have to move on from their excellent QB Ian Book who is off to the NFL (Saints). They’ll miss the crafty running ability of Book but get a quality transfer from Wisconsin in Jack Coan who was really good in 2019 (18-5 TD to INT, 70%). The ground game is in phenomenal shape with the return of 1,000-yard rusher Kyren Williams (14 TD) and #2 RB Chris Tyree (525, 6.8, 4 TD). They’ll need to replace some key pieces at WR but boast one of the best TEs in college football in Michael Mayer (42-450, 10.7, 2 TD). They lost a ton of talent up front including THREE guys that were taken in the NFL draft, so despite the solid play over the last number of years, there’s no doubt they’ll be down a notch.
Notre Dame played strong D once again and allowed fewer than 20 PPG for the third consecutive season (19.7, #14 FBS) despite playing ROLL TIDE, North Carolina, and Clemson X 2. They lose three of the top-five tacklers and quite a bit of star power from LY’s stop unit. There’s a ton of raw talent up front but they lose a pair of starters to the NFL who combined for 10 sacks LY. Losing Butkus Award winning LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah to the NFL stings as well, but there are still talented peeps on board including LB Drew White (#3 tackler, 9 TFL LY). They lose a pair of talented starters in the secondary but safety Kyle Hamilton is rock solid and recall that he led the team in tackles in 2020. They lose ace DC Clark Lea to Wake Forest but get a fine replacement in Marcus Freeman who comes over from Cincinnati.
PK Jonathan Doerer comes back after an inconsistent campaign (15/23, 4-9 40+) but P Jay Bramblett was very effective LY (42.8, 41.3 net).
Overall – YIKES. It’s almost always tough, but this docket is pretty nasty. They don’t face Clemson like LY but the docket is DEEP with good teams.
Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Navy (November 6th)
It could be a sleepy spot after facing USC and North Carolina and note that this is a yuuuuge game for Navy.
Season Win Total
per 5Dimes July 19
Over 9 +125
Under 9 -145
They lost a lot of talent to the NFL and it seems more likely that they win eight games as opposed to ten.
The Irish have been remarkably consistent over the last ten years and won eight or more games on every occasions but one (2016). There’s still a lot of talent on this roster and they get a nice replacement for Book but the schedule is going to be a grind. We’ll call for eight or nine wins and a decent bowl bid.
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