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Purdue vs. Notre Dame
Pointspread - Notre Dame -11 O/U 52
How badly do you figure new Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly wants this one? A chance to show the Notre Dame hopeful, and the nation in general, that Notre Dame football is back on the map! Notre Dame opens up the year as an 11 point favorite over the Purdue Boilermakers, a team with a 2nd year coach coming off a 5-7 season.
Truth is, Brian Kelly inherits a team that's already chock full of talent. It's not as if Charlie Weis did nothing for 5 years. The talent is there. It's a perfect situation for any coach to walk into, let alone a coach with the merits of a Brian Kelly. Kelly is known as an offensive guy, and he inherits a Notre Dame offense that averaged 30 points per game last season. The defense needs some work though, without question. They switched from a 4 man front to a 3-4 in the spring, and by all accounts, the defense is already dramatically improved.
Notre Dame gets to go up against a Purdue defense that gave up 30 points per game last year, and in fact, gives up close to that just about every year. Notre Dame doesn't figure to have much trouble finding the endzone on September 4th. If the defense is as improved as we hear, it could be a long day for Purdue.
If nothing else, Purdue was competitive last year. They may have only won 5 games but they were in every game. They lost by more than 11, the number on this game, just twice all year. But we feel they are walking into a bad situation here to open the year. They'll face a high powered offense, in their home opener, before a rabid home crowd, with a coach who figures to have them sky high in his debut. The talent at Notre Dame is much better than that of Purdue. We think Brian Kelly wins this game with a huge exclamation point. We don't like laying points period, let along 11 points with a team that hasn't been able to cover a number like that too often over the last several years. But we think Notre Dame is the way to go in this spot. Notre Dame -11