The Notre Dame Football team is riding the high of one of their greatest wins in the last decade. The Clemson Tigers seemed like an unbeatable force in the regular season over the last three seasons but Notre Dame took two overtimes and the resiliency of a quarterback to down the Tigers.
They stormed the field after and there were a ton of concerns as to whether or not their players would contact the coronavirus, but through Thursday morning, no players have tested positive. This comes as a surprise because it seems like practically every SEC game is being cancelled this week.
The Fighting Irish can’t let their guard down this week, they are playing a team that came oh so close to taking down Clemson themselves just two weeks ago. The Boston College Eagles look like a much different program with first year head coach Jeff Haley. They are competitive against good programs and they are playing at a higher level than they have in years past.
For my money, the best story in this game comes on the Boston College side and particularly their quarterback. Die-hard Notre Dame fans should know him well. His name is Phil Jurkovec. He was a Fighting Irish QB that clearly wasn’t going to challenge Ian Book and ultimately transferred to BC. This season, Jurkovec has accounted for 74.1% of Boston College’s yards this season, which leads the ACC and trails only Kyle Trask among Power 5 quarterbacks.
Maybe the most interesting aspect of this matchup is the history that comes along with it. Boston College has played heartbreaker to Notre Dame many times before. In 2002, the Irish were 8-0 and coming off a massive win over FSU, then they lost 14-7 to BC. Nine years earlier, Notre Dame was 10-0, they had just upset Charlie Ward’s Seminoles and were destined for a National Championship and then…..the Eagles beat them 41-39.
There is a stout history of ruining a good Notre Dame season and it wouldn’t floor me if it happened again this season. Maybe the Irish have turned a corner but it seems like they are always letting us down year after year.
Notre Dame Keys to the Game:
Notre Dame, Stay Healthy: This may seem like something that is out of their control and it mostly is but Notre Dame can do a good job this week of social distancing, keeping their guys separate when they can and avoid a positive COVID test where possible. A lot of fans stormed that field last week and it could prove costly if they lose Ian Book or a star player.
Boston College Keys to the Game:
Boston College, Get Bailey Going: If the Eagles want to win, they can’t put it all on the shoulders off Jurkovec. The Irish have a stout run defense, they held Clemson to under 40 rushing yards all game. Bailey is having an okay season, nothing like A.J. Dillon, but some productive running could go a long way for him.
Notre Dame loves to choke and I love to watch it, but I don’t see it happening here.
Notre Dame 35 Boston College 24
By: Matt Lively CruelFan.com