Notre Dame football: pretenders or contenders? Analyst gives the verdict

Notre Dame football is gearing up for a potential playoff run in 2024. Can they overcome challenges and compete for the National Title?
A Notre Dame football fan looks on
A Notre Dame football fan looks on / Sam Wasson/GettyImages

After a 10-3 season ending with a blowout victory in the Sun Bowl, Notre Dame football fans expect an even better campaign in 2024. The question now is whether the Fighting Irish can really come through with a better season in 2024 to the point where they're competing for the National Title and making a run through the playoffs.

Some analysts believe the Golden Domers are headed to the playoffs this season, especially since the playoffs now include more than just the four top-ranked teams in college football.

Now that we're inside 100 days until the season kicks off, some are taking an even closer look at who might be making the playoffs. So the question of course, is Notre Dame football a contender, or a pretender?

247Sports recently took a look at five different teams to answer that exact question, including the Irish.

Notre Dame football a pretender or contender for 2024 playoffs?

So what was the final verdict from Brad Crawford on whether Notre Dame is really headed for the playoffs? It turns out it might have been a bit harder for him than it should have been.

"Notre Dame projects as a College Football Playoff team if the Fighting Irish beat USC in the regular-season finale and finish with, at worst, 10 wins. Not all colleagues agree with the high-profile billing, some of that due to injury worries with Duke transfer Riley Leonard at quarterback and other roster questions. However, the expanded playoff format will always be beneficial to an independent like the Fighting Irish who, compared to their other Power-conference brethren, will play annual schedules conducive to success."

Crawford pointed to new offensive coordinator Mike Denbrock as being a key to Notre Dame football being contenders. 

"If Denbrock can work his magic with Notre Dame's talent at the position and the Fighting Irish can fill a couple sizable production holes defensively, buying stock in this team now is a good idea."

It appears someone else knows that Notre Dame football is not a pretender. And that's going to make a fun leadup to the 2024 season.