Notre Dame men’s basketball finally cracked the top 25. But 23rd is just the start for the Fighting Irish.
At 8-0, Notre Dame has made their voice heard in the NCAA. As a team who wasn’t considered a contender in the ACC, or a NCAA tournament, the Irish have turned some heads with this hot start.
It took eight games, but Notre Dame finally made the top 25. At 23rd, Notre Dame can finally say they’re getting recognition for their play this season.
The Irish aren’t done yet, though. With three days until their game against Villanova, Notre Dame has a tremendous opportunity to turn 2016-2017 into a breakout year. With 23 games left in the season, the Irish could make 23 the start of a top 10 finish.
After their game against Fort Wayne, the Irish have a stretch of games all worthy of moving the Irish up the AP Polls. Notre Dame’s schedule still consists of games with Purdue, Pitt, Louisville, Clemson, Miami, Virginia Tech, Syracuse, Virginia, Duke, and North Carolina.
There’s no doubt that the Fighting Irish have a tough road ahead of them. The teams they’ll play from now until the ACC tournament are some of the best in the country. If they’re able to win, Notre Dame can make this season one of the best they’ve seen in years.
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Saying a team will go undefeated in college basketball is pretty far fetched. A team with one reliable big man and a bulk of their depth coming from their backcourt is not a team that will finish 31-0. That doesn’t mean they can’t compete for a top 10 finish. If the Irish can pull off a record with less than three losses they should find themselves near the top of the ACC. From there, the season is theirs for the taking.
Hypothetically speaking, a win over Villanova, North Carolina, Duke, Purdue, and Virginia is a resume well enough to earn a spot in the top 25. With wins over most of the other teams they play should land them in the top 10, maybe even the top 5.
23 is just the start. Notre Dame’s schedule will give them every chance to work their way into the top 10. Work is the key word, though. It’s going to be one tough road ahead for Notre Dame. That doesn’t mean they’re in for a bad season.
The Fighting Irish can either make this season one to remember, or one to forget. If they take advantage of their schedule, #23 could be just the beginning of Notre Dame’s season.