Check out the Miami vs. Notre Dame fearless prediction and game preview.
Miami (4-3) vs. Notre Dame (2-5) Game Preview
Date: Saturday, Oct. 29
Game Time: 3:30 pm
Venue: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, IN
Why Miami Is Going To Win
Notre Dame is awful.
There’s more than enough talent to be a whole lot better than this.
It’s got the No. 1 pick in the 2017 NFL Draft at quarterback. It has a few NFL starting offensive linemen. It has enough good players on the defensive front seven, and the skill players around DeShone Kizer have been good enough.
But this dog of a team just won’t hunt.
The offense woke up against Syracuse – the special teams helped the cause in the 50-33 win – but there have been too many close-call losses without the ability to come up with anything to turn games around.
For good and for bad, four of the losses came by a touchdown or less, and the loss to Michigan State was just by eight points. The team’s been right there in game after game, but for a program that doesn’t have a conference title to play for, and considering it’s coming off a year when it was just so close to getting to the playoff, it’s almost as if the Irish are playing like there’s nothing to play for.
The secondary that was depleted by offseason issues never recovered, being totally unable to handle anyone who can throw the ball a bit – bad weather against NC State notwithstanding.
This is where Brad Kaaya needs to take over and be the star he was supposed to be coming into the season, coming off a 323-yard, two-touchdown passing day against Virginia Tech and with 214 yards or more over the last five games.
Kaaya needs to be efficient on offense, while the Cane defensive front needs to get back to the dominant force it was over the first part of the season. It’s been good, but it’s not killing teams and taking over games like it did throughout September, and now that could be even more of a problem because …
Why Notre Dame Is Going To Win
The Hurricane defense is banged up, especially on the line.
The secondary has its injury issues, too, but the front four is the biggest concern with Chad Thomas fighting to come back healthy, while fellow end Demetrius Jackson has a knee problem. Even in late-October, this is still a relatively young defense overall – especially in the linebacking corps – and the line needs to pressure Kizer from the start. If that doesn’t happen, look out.
As good as the Hurricane pass rush has been, it hasn’t mattered much against North Carolina’s Mitch Trubisky, Florida State’s Deondre Francois, and Virginia Tech’s Jerod Evans, with the three combining for over 800 passing yards and seven touchdowns and just one pick.
Miami lost all three games.
Kizer got benched for a bit against Stanford and he hasn’t thrown a touchdown pass in either of the last two games – blame Hurricane Matthew for the problems against NC State – and now, with two weeks off, he and the offense are way overdue to kick up the production and save the second half of the season.
All is not lost. Win this week, and with winnable dates against Navy and Army to follow, there’s a chance to get back in the bowl hunt and do something positive to salvage this thing.
Yeah, the break will matter. The team needed a reboot, and the time off should do it good.
So how will the Irish pull this off? Don’t make mistakes, win the special teams battle, and own the clock. Miami is miserable at keeping the chains moving and cranking out long, sustained drives. However, it’s terrific at shooting itself in the foot with penalties and misfires in the red zone.
Notre Dame, play a clean, tight game, and you’ll be right in this.
What’s Going To Happen?
This should’ve been a bigger game than it is, but the two should put on an entertaining show.
There’s a chance this might be an NFL scouting showcase between the top two picks in the draft, or at least a couple of first round franchise types, and Kizer and Kaaya should put on a show.
Expect each quarterback to wing it around from the start against the two porous secondaries with the two teams looking recharged and better than they did a few weeks ago.
Notre Dame is way, way, way overdue to come up with a good game, and even under pressure, this is where Kizer will come through. The Irish have had problems with everyone, while the Canes can’t seem to handle good quarterbacks.
This will come down to who has the ball last.
Miami vs. Notre Dame Prediction
Final Score: Notre Dame 31, Miami 27
Line: Miami -2.5, o/u: 58.5
ATS Confidence: 5: Trump in Alabama – 1: Trump in New York … 3
Must See Rating: 5: Bad Santa 2 – 1: 2016 NFL … 4