It hasn’t been easy to be a Notre Dame fan this week. They have dealt with a lot of adversity this week after finishing what turned out to be a really good year. After a rough start, they pulled together to end up with an 11-1 record when many thought they would have no chance at the College Football Playoff.
Then, they lost their head coach as he made the shocking announcement that he will be moving on to be the coach of the LSU Tigers going forward. With Ed Orgeron leaving, they needed a replacement down there and Brian Kelly is going to be the guy.
A lot of people are (and should be) very upset with Coach Kelly. He had been with the program for over ten years so you knew there was more behind than ahead but this was very abrupt. They aren’t even out of postseason contention year. They will, at minimum, play in a high-profile bowl game at the end of the year. Kelly will be around for none of it.
Notre Dame doesn’t have a conference title game to play in because they are not in a conference. Their big win over Stanford finished off their impressive regular season with a bang. Unfortunately, the College Football Playoff committee put them at six so they need some serious help this weekend. As a result, they have a lot to cheer for this week.
Notre Dame has a lot to root for during College Football championship week.
Ahead of them (in order) is Georgia, Michigan, Alabama, Cincinnati, and Oklahoma State. Michigan replaced Ohio State as number two after getting the big win over them and Oklahoma State jumped Notre Dame into that fifth spot. As mentioned before, the Irish need some help.
Georgia plays against Alabama in the SEC Championship game. If Georiga wins, Alabama is out. If Alabama wins, they will both probably make it to the playoff. Oklahoma State plays Baylor (who is number nine) in the Big 12 Championship. It would really help the Irish if Baylor wins because Oklahoma State already jumped them.
Michigan is playing against Iowa in the Big Ten Championship. If Iowa were to win somehow, Michigan would also be eliminated from the postseason (you would think). That feels like the least likely but Michigan has been known to do stuff like this lately.
Of course, there is Cincinnati. They are a very polarizing playoff team because of the fact that they are in a “group of five” conference and not a power five school. They have done everything needed to be in this position, including a win over Notre Dame.
However, if they lose the AAC Championship game to Houston, they are out. A win over Houston (who is no slouch at 16), could lock Cincinnati in. It is going to be interesting to see how this all plays out as the Irish clearly have some rooting interest now.
Two of these things that factor positively for Notre Dame need to happen in order for them to make the College Football Playoff. It may seem like a long shot but you just never know. Anything can happen in this crazy game.