ND is not the only team to be unsettled at the QB. Boob Davie and Saban are both starting the season with two QBs. (Never thought I would mention those two in same sentence.) Too bad about Cheech Redfield, but hopefully the other guys can have good careers at ND.
I have to take issue with the comment: "I think 11-1 is the best case scenario."Last year we were seconds from beating Stanford on the road against a QB in the NFL this year, and we were a 2-pt conversion from OT against Clemson on the road with a young Kizer. We pull out either and we were 11-1, and we pull out both ... 12-0.Now contrast that with this year. Vegas has ND favored in EVERY game this year, except for USC, and there is a very decent chance we'll be favored in that game as well, by the time it rolls around. We could be 11-0 and USC could be a train-wreck by then.ND's schedule is as easy this year as I can remember for a long time. The real issue is likely to be whether or not we can stay healthy.2 of the three toughest games are games we typically win under Kelly: MSU and Stanford at home, and that success has occurred without the significant edge in experience (and likely talent as well) at QB we have this year. Kelly has also done pretty well against USC, where we have a significant experience edge at QB and Coaching Staff. ND has had such bad luck in recent years with injuries - it's almost like we expect it. We had it again last year, where we had to face Clemson and Stanford on the road. But this year ... hopefully no bad injury bug and we don't have Stanford and Clemson on the Road.Clearly ... the best case scenario is 12-0. Our chances for 12-0 are objectively superior (by a decent margin) than they were in 2012 with a freshman QB, a tougher schedule, and a young secondary.I really just want to get past Tx. Objectively, I think we match up really well against them, but it's still a first game of season on the road on a big stage with Nyles Morgan taking over at MLB against a fast-paced offense ...
You forgot to mention we were seconds away from losing to Virginia last year.....Which leads me to my point....college football is VERY competitive. Not a lot separates the top 20 programs, and anything can happen. Yes, we're due for a little luck, but lots has to happen for everything to come together. 12-0 is doable, but always an unlikely thing. Texas, MSU, and Stanford are all tough games that anything can happen. Will be interesting to say the least. We know a lot come Sunday in Austin.
Point taken on Va game, but that's with our starting QB going down in that game. I honestly don't think the game would have been that close had Zaire not gone down, understanding that Kiser tossed the game-winning TD.But here's the more direct point ... we were underdogs in 2 games last year and those were the games we lost.This year, we are favored in first 11 games, and very possibly will be favored in all 12. And this year we will not be breaking in a new QB mid-Season. Whereas our top 3 opponents are all breaking in new QBs.Obviously lots of things can go wrong still, but right now ... 12-0 should be the goal for this Team and, ergo, it should be the best case scenario at this stage.It really was not a major criticism - I realize in CFB that 11-1 is statistically more probable then 12-0.
I would love to see ND run the table. We will have to have luck with injuries. Realistically the 11-1 season is probably our ceiling. 8-4 is always a possibility with Kelly. Still don't think we are good enough to beat the elites if we make playoffs but we are at least regularly in the top 10 again.
I think this year we can compete with the elites. It's a wide open year. Don't forget, Alabama was a 4th and 29 away from losing to Ole Miss and with 2 losses, would've never made the Playoffs. Early loss is always better than a late one. 11-1 might get us in this year.
Hmmmmm. How is that "compete with the elites" working for you now?
Okay I take it back - you are right. 11-1 IS the best case scenario. ;)
Well, it is what it is. Still early, lots can happen. But safe to say, they'll need to improve on defense if they have any shot of running the table. Don't see it happening and think we're headed for 10-2 or 9-3.
Well that didn't take long. RTR.
Notre Dame just doesn't have an elite defense. But what is an elite defense? Ole Miss has NFL guys all over their defense and FSU hung 40+ on them. I will predict with confidence that ND will end up with a better record than Texas.