Though it hasn’t been publicized as such, this season has been a bit of a revenge tour for the Irish. They have so far defeated every team that they had previously lost to in Stanford, Virginia Tech, and Northwestern. The next stop on this “revenge tour” is Florida State, and you’re crazy if you don’t think Brian Kelly has had this game circled since it was scheduled.
Look, I don’t care that the heartbreaking 31-27 loss in Tallahassee was four years ago. It still stings and in my opinion is one of the most heartbreaking losses during the Brian Kelly era. Only a handful of players on this year’s team were on the roster for that game, but regardless, this is an opportunity to get an Irish victory in a series that Florida State has mostly dominated.
Notre Dame hasn’t defeated Florida State since 2002 and their only other win over the Seminoles came during the 1993 “Game of the Century” matchup. The Irish have dropped their last three meetings to the ‘Noles; a 37-0 embarrassment in South Bend in 2003, the 18-14 loss in the 2011 Champs Sports Bowl, and the 31-27 heartbreaker in 2014.
It might be petty to wish for a 70-0 beatdown of the Seminoles this weekend, but I don’t care. There is no question that Brian Kelly and his staff understand what that loss did to their 2014 season. The wind was taken out of their sails and the Irish became a completely different team, losing four of their last five games.
I know that most Irish fans will be watching this weekend’s game with that 2014 loss in the back of their mind (or at least I will). Kelly and this team haven’t forgotten that loss either, and I fully expect the Irish to keep their foot on the gas all game and get their payback.