LINE Notre Dame -20.5
ATS PICK Notre Dame
Without question, if a line is too good to be true, it absolutely is. However, a friend of mine asked the proper question.
“How high would this line have to be to actually pick Stanford?”
It was a total joke to open at Notre Dame -16, and it’s a bit stunning that it stopped at 20.5.
Did Notre Dame kick it all in against Syracuse last season with the College Football Playoff world watching? No, it was the exact opposite, but the real game was against Clemson in the ACC Championship the following week.
Did Brian Kelly’s club make an emphatic statement in 2018 in the final against a bad USC team on the road? Not really, but style points didn’t seem to matter all that much on the way to 12-0.
Even the 2012 team that wanted to close strong and get into the BCS Championship was just okay in the 22-13 win against a meh USC.
But this is different.
Style points definitely matter here. And no, not the rub-it-in with a late score way. It’s more like the 55-0 performance over Georgia Tech last week way, or win each of the last five games by double-digits way.
Notre Dame has to come up with a good enough performance so that the College Football Playoff committee has no problems putting it at 4 if Cincinnati is 3, or – if the Bearcats lose to Houston – give if a top four spot by being the hot team with the good resumé.
Oh yeah, and Stanford is next-level awful.
The defense has completely collapsed, there’s no running game, and it hasn’t scored more than 13 points in any of its last four games or in five of its last six.
Stanford got blasted by 30 against Cal. It got whacked by 21 at Oregon State, and Utah went all 52-7 on it.
Stanford lost to Washington. At home.
Let’s put it this way. If Notre Dame really is a College Football Playoff-caliber team, the 20.5 isn’t anything more than a rounding error that will be fixed within moments after kickoff.
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