NCAAF Odds – (10) Notre Dame at Navy

Among the one-loss teams circling the top of the College Football Playoff rankings, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish arguably have the best loss on the board (a last-minute 31-27 loss at No. 2 Florida State, a game they entered as 11.5-point underdogs). Yet, they find themselves in tenth place in the Selection Committee’s Top 25 and know they need to win out to make the final four-team cut. This Saturday, the Irish play the easiest game left on their schedule, as they visit FedExField in Landover, Maryland, to face the Navy Midshipmen (8:00 p.m. Eastern).

Among the one-loss teams circling the top of the College Football Playoff rankings, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish arguably have the best loss on the board (a last-minute 31-27 loss at No. 2 Florida State, a game they entered as 11.5-point underdogs). Yet, they find themselves in tenth place in the Selection Committee’s Top 25 and know they need to win out to make the final four-team cut. This Saturday, the Irish play the easiest game left on their schedule, as they visit FedExField in Landover, Maryland, to face the Navy Midshipmen (8:00 p.m. Eastern).

Notre Dame hasn’t played since the FSU game. When asked if he was concerned about a possible post-loss hangover, coach Brian Kelly said “I don’t know why there would be, to be quite honest with you. There shouldn’t be. Navy is a very good opponent, but there shouldn’t be any carry over. We should be able to play consistently the next week.”

Navy is 4-4 this season and enters this game with two wins in a row and the best rushing offense in the nation, averaging 352.3 rushing yards per game. Navy shares the load in the backfield; both Keenan Reynolds and Noah Copeland have over 600 yards, and three more Midshipmen have over 200 yards.

Even though teams know that Navy is going to run the ball, they are still finding ways to be successful on the ground week-in and week-out. “I think that that’s the secret to their success in that they evolve enough offensively that slight tweaks make it difficult to defend with certainty, and then their in-game adjustments are outstanding,” Kelly said of Navy’s rushing attack.

If there was ever a game in which Navy was going to air it out, this would be a prime candidate. The Midshipmen will be facing the best rush defense they have played all year in Notre Dame. The Irish are 12th in the nation, surrendering just over 100 yards per game on the ground. The Notre Dame pass defense has looked vulnerable at times, though, and sits just 76th in the country, giving up over 240 yards per game.

Regardless of what Navy does on offense, the D will have a monumental challenge. Notre Dame comes in averaging 162 yards per game on the ground and 285 through the air. Whereas the Navy defense is just 75th in the nation, giving up 411 yards per game. The Irish should be able to move the ball at will.

Notre Dame is currently a 14-point and the over/under is at 55. Looking at the recent trends, Navy is 3-15 SU in its last 18 against Notre Dame and the total has hit the over in four of the last five Navy/Notre Dame games.

Frank Lorenzo

MTS co-founder Frank “Let It Ride” Lorenzo has been betting on sports since he was legally allowed to do so. (Did he do so before then, too? No comment.) He enjoys very strong coffee, neon lights, and passing on his wealth of betting knowledge to anyone who will listen.