Notre Dame Football: Reviewing Statistical Predictions

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Nov 30, 2013; Stanford, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal running back Tyler Gaffney (25) carries the ball against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish during the fourth quarter at Stanford Stadium. The Stanford Cardinal defeated the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 27-20. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Notre Dame Allows 23 points or more on Average This Season

Notre Dame switches from a 3-4 to a 4-3 Defense. More importantly, they introduce a new Defensive coordinator to the mix, Brian VanGorder. VanGorder’s scheme is much more aggressive than Diaco’s bend but do not break scheme. This will undoubtedly lead to bigger plays both good and bad. Notre Dame will likely force more turnovers but they will also give up more big plays.

The talent in the front seven is a major concern for the team. The Defensive Line will consist of Romeo Okwara, Sheldon Day, Jarron Jones and Ishaq Williams. Day and Jones are probably the best players in the front seven. The Linebackers will feature Smith, Schmidt and Turner (possibly Councell). This is probably the least experienced front seven since Brian Kelly took over.

The strength of the Defense is in the backend. The Irish have a wealth of talent at the Cornerback position with KeiVarae Russell, Cody Riggs, Cole Luke, Devin Butler and Nick Watkins. Notre Dame should be able to play VanGorder’s aggressive scheme with the amount of Cornerbacks on the roster. Defensive Season Projections: 23.4 points per game. 

Update: Who could have seen this one coming? Through three games, the Fighting Irish have only yielded 10.3 points per game including a shutout of rival Michigan. For this prediction to be correct, Notre Dame would need to allow 27.8 points per game the rest of the season. Technically, this could happen because Notre Dame is an inexperienced Defense. But based on the information thus far, Notre Dame appears to be a very solid Defense. Better than 2012? Time will tell. Result: Wrong