Notre Dame has two more Games left in its quest to finish the regular season undefeated. Syracuse wasn’t expected to be one of its toughest opponents, but that’s how the season has gone. The Fighting Irish still opened as -9.5 point favorites at 5Dimes Sportsbook for the Game at Yankee Stadium. (currently -11
This Game should be interesting because the Orange have trounced their last Four opponents after losing two in a row. This is a team that almost took down Clemson on the road and is averaging more than 40 points per Game. For Notre Dame, this Game may be its toughest of the year outside of the opener against Michigan. The Irish have dominated most opposition, but are far from a lock as seen in the close wins against Pitt and Vandy earlier.
The biggest question for this Game is Notre Dame’s quarterback, though Ian Book is expected to play after missing the Florida State win. Book is one of the reasons this team is undefeated as Brandon Wimbush’s struggles came up again in the FSU Game, completing less than 50 percent of his passes for a couple picks. Book has been excellent with a 74.5% completion rate to go with 15 touchdowns and only Four interceptions. He’s helped by a ground Game led by Dexter Williams, who is averaging 6.8 yards per carry.
That’s where the Irish can control this Game because Syracuse’s defense has been hit and miss all season, allowing 430 yards per Game. They stood their ground against Clemson, but gave up 44 points to Pitt the following Game and close to 40 against teams like UNC and NC State. If that defense doesn’t show up, Book should lead Notre Dame to at least 40 points.
Eric Dungey still has the ability to help Syracuse cover, leading one of the best offenses in the nation. The quarterback is a fine passer, but he’s most lethal on the ground where he has 690 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns. Top running back Moe Neal should also be good to go after carving up Louisville last weekend for 159 yards and two touchdowns on eight carries. This offense has had success against everyone but Clemson so it’ll be fun to see what it can put together against a Notre Dame defense that is good, but not great.
The Irish are allowing just 18.7 points per contest, yet a lot of that can be attributed to Schedule. A lot of the tough Games they were supposed to have turned into easy wins because those teams fell off. In fact, the best offenses that Notre Dame has faced are Michigan’s and Wake Forest’s. The Wolverines were still a work in progress in the opener and Wake Forest didn’t have a chance in that matchup because the Irish scored 56 points. The Irish haven’t dominated anyone, but have kept everyone in check, which should make the matchup with Dungey interesting. When these teams met two years ago, Syracuse scored 33 points on the back of 363 passing yards, 49 rushing yards and five total touchdowns from Dungey. Obviously, that was a different time because the Irish only had Four wins that season.
The Orange are 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 overall and 9-3 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. The Fighting Irish are 5-1-1 ATS in their last seven overall.
Additional ATS Trends
Notre Dame is 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 Games as a favorite.
Notre Dame is 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 Games following a win.
Notre Dame is 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 Games following a ATS win.
Notre Dame is 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 non-Conference Games.
Notre Dame is 8-20-1 ATS in their last 29 Games in November.
Syracuse is 5-2-2 ATS in their last 9 Games as a favorite.
Syracuse is 9-1-1 ATS in their last 11 Games following a win.
Syracuse is 8-2-2 ATS in their last 12 Games following a ATS win.
Syracuse is 9-3 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
Syracuse is 9-3 ATS in their last 12 Games as an underdog.
Syracuse is 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 Games overall.
Syracuse is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 neutral site Games.
Syracuse is 6-1 ATS in their last 7 Games on grass.
Our Pick – Syracuse +11