Notre Dame football travels to Blacksburg to face No. 24 Virginia Tech this weekend. Here is a look at the key matchups to watch for when the Irish are on offense.
Notre Dame football is 5-0 and riding the momentum of a blowout victory last week over rival Stanford. The Irish are looking to add another resume-building win this weekend over No. 24 Virginia Tech. This will be the first hostile environment Notre Dame has played in all season, but the Irish are confident behind the resurgence of the offense with Ian Book at quarterback and their continued dominant defense.
Looking at the offensive side of the ball for Notre Dame, the previous two weeks have shown how dangerous this team can be with a dangerous passing game that can complement the already great run game. On paper, the Irish match up well versus the Hokie defense, which is rebuilding after losing a variety of players during the offseason.
Virginia Tech has struggled mightily in the passing game this year, giving up over 300 yards through the air per game including an embarrassing 495 yards to Old Dominion. They currently have the 123rd ranked passing defense in the country out of 130 teams. That is good news for the Irish offense who have found a new and improved passing attack under the direction of Book.
Where Virginia Tech excels at on the defensive side of the ball is in their run defense. Tech is ranked 5th in the country, giving up just 84 yards on the ground per contest. A huge part of Notre Dame’s offensive identity is running the ball and getting chunk plays on the ground, so this will be a great matchup Saturday night. The good news for the Irish is running back Tony Jones, Jr. will play after suffering an ankle injury against Stanford last week.
This week is another huge test for this Irish team and an opportunity for the offense to continue improving and building on their recent success.
Here are the key matchups to watch for on the offensive side of the ball Saturday night: