Nostradamus on Notre Dame

As we get past the early holiday servings of football and prepare for Saturday's main course, your Bootleg staffers have offered up their predictions on the Duel with the Domers. The perspectives are varied, but the answers are the same. Even a guest opinion from the Notre Dame site sees Cardinal and White glory...

Tree Boy
The boys are ready to make amends for last weeks eye sore.  Randy is back, it's the last home game for a great group of seniors, and to top it off, the game is live nationally; albeit spilt naitonally.  I couldn't think of a better setting in which to welcome the Molding Do(h!)mers to the farm to get their whoopin', if for nothing more than to watch Beano "B.C. Birthday" Cook scratch his 6 chins in disgust. Stanford 45 - Notre Dame 20

I hope the Irish enjoyed their turkey on Thursday, because they aren't going to enjoy Saturday's game.  This is not the Stanford you remember -- this year's Cardinal will make life miserable for Holiday and the option offense.  And the Irish have no hope of stopping Stanford's multi-faceted offense. Stanford 40 - Notre Dame 17

What better opponent to take our bowl frustrations out on than the Irish? One can argue that Notre Dame, with its preferential TV and bowl deals, is one of the main culprits of why we are staring down on an uninspiring Seattle Bowl berth. Coach ‘Rone will make them pay! Also, don't believe some of the Irish's lofty defensive stats. They have racked those stats up against inferior offenses. For instance, ND's pass defense ranks 7th nationally but the average offensive pass ranking of their opponents is 71st best out of 115 teams. When I think of sophisticated offenses, I generally don't think of Navy, West Virginia or Pittsburgh. Stanford will torch "coach" Davie's defense. Stanford 44 - Notre Dame 23

On October 27, Stanford faced the at-leat-at-the-time highly ranked Bruins of UCLA.  Many Bruin fans were expecting to have the UCLA defense shutdown the Cardinal offense led by backup quarterback Chris Lewis.  Instead, Stanford torched UCLA for 38 points and 463 yards. This Saturday, Stanford will once again face a team that so far has been very strong on defense.  Stanford's starting quarterback Randy Fasani will be returning from injury.  The Cardinal will definintely put up some points.  The only question is if Notre Dame can score as many.  The Cardinal have one of the best run defenses in the country but one of the bottom pass defenses.  However, the pass defense stat can be misleading as many teams have gotten behind early against Stanford and had to try to comeback through the air.  The Irish will be able to score, but probably not enough. Stanford 31 - Notre Dame 21

The biggest variable in this game may be the weather, with a forecast for the worst rain seen at gametime in Stanford Stadium in years. That might negate the aerial assault expected in the return of Randy Fasani, and keep the overall score down in the game. Both teams put the emphasis on running the ball this year, and while Stanford has excelled at shutting down the run, they have a poor history against 60 minutes of option football. Coy Wire and Colin Branch are the keys for Stanford in tracking and punishing Carlyle Holiday and that option. Stanford punting in the mud and driving rain is a nightmarish vision. But with David Givens and Tony Fisher out for the Tarnished Domers, I think the better team will come out on top. Look for special teams and turnovers as the key indicators in this rainsoaked affair. Stanford 31 - Notre Dame 20

Alan Tieuli (
Bob Davie is on record as saying he would be in favor of accepting a Music City Bowl invitation if the Irish win this game and in West Lafayette next weekend.  Wow, now there is incentive.  Redemption in Nashville!  Fear not, the Irish will be home for the holidays and the new head coach will be deep into building his staff and verbal commitments.  By any reasonable analysis, this Irish season has been a complete meltdown in terms of performance and judgment.  It became comical today to watch A&M and Nebraska -- the cornerstones of college football excellence if you listened to Davie all season -- get absolutely pounded physically and athletically by Texas and Colorado.  Once again, a "murderous" Notre Dame schedule has been exposed as "challenging" at best.  This game is another example.  Stanford is having a fine season, but ND's talent is equal or better at most positions.  But, it's on the road, at night, and Notre Dame has not won in such a scenario since 1997 (at Hawaii) and you know Davie and his staff will find a way to make things more difficult.   If you follow such matters, the Irish are 3-6 against the Las Vegas line this year and the Cardinal look awfully attractive here at a price such a little bit north of a touchdown.  Only way Irish win this game is if Stanford gives it away. Stanford 28 - Notre Dame 13

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