North Carolina heads to South Bend, Indiana as the homestand continues for No.11 Notre Dame on Saturday night in the renewal of a series that dates back to 1949 and includes 21 previous meetings. The Fighting Irish have historically dominated the Tar Heels, holding a 19-2 lead, including a 31-17 victory at Chapel Hill, NC last season.
Notre Dame comes into the game with real momentum after a 31-16 home win over USC, while North Carolina hope the opportunity will provide a better platform to launch into the second half of their season afterwards. a 4-3 start that is well below preseason expectations. Mack Brown’s team come out of a goodbye and now look to a home stretch that includes not only the Fighting Irish, but three ACC Championship contenders at Wake Forest, Pitt and NC State.
The Fighting Irish still have an outside path to a third college football playoff appearance in four years, having just one loss to Cincinnati on their resume. They’ll need help getting closer to the top four, but as the selection committee prepares to release their first ranking on November 2, it’s a great opportunity to make a good impression on a prime-time stage.
Notre Dame vs. North Carolina: what to know
Notre Dame star security Kyle Hamilton will be absent: The good news is that coach Brian Kelly believes Hamilton will be able to return to action this season after suffering a knee injury against USC. At the time, there was certainly concern that All-American safety could be cut off for an extended period of time, but the team’s medics are hopeful the injury was not serious. However, Hamilton will miss Saturday night’s game. It’s not the ideal game for the defense to have their best passing defenseman out of the lineup against Sam Howell and a passing attack that heavily stars a star like wide receiver Josh Downs. Containing the Tar Heels’ passing attack will be a battle on two fronts: trying to put pressure on Howell with Isaiah Foskey and the defensive front while relying on a pass defense that has already shown its depth beyond. Hamilton with eight different players recording interceptions.
The Irish offensive finally begins: A quick new approach with quick passes from Jack Coan helped Notre Dame’s offense find new life. These changes helped resolve issues posed by early-season struggles along the offensive line and propelled Kyren Williams to 138 rushing yards and two touchdowns in addition to 42 receiving yards on six catches against the Trojans. Williams is one of Notre Dame’s best offensive players and the inability to establish running play has been the biggest frustration of the first half of the season. Seeing the sophomore star take off against USC suggests more success ahead for the offense.
Sam Howell needs a rebound performance: After four straight 300-yard games, Howell threw for less than 225 yards in each of North Carolina’s last two games with two touchdowns and one interception in each game. Howell contributes in several ways within the offense, including double-digit rush attempts in every game this season and two running scores against Miami. However, more aerial production would be a welcome sign for the Tar Heels in the second half of the season. Howell started the year as the ACC Preseason Player of the Year and Heisman Trophy contender. He was believed to be among the top quarterbacks in the NFL draft class of 2022. While the overall job for Howell in 2020 hasn’t been bad, he falls short of those expectations.
How to watch Notre Dame vs. UNC live
Dated: Saturday October 30 | Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
Site: Notre-Dame Stadium – South Bend, Indiana
TV: NBC | Direct: fuboTV (Try for free)
Notre Dame prediction against UNC, pick
Featured Game | Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs North Carolina Tar Heels
I think there will be a lot of points here, with Howell and Downs succeeding against a Notre Dame secondary who will be without her All-American security. So if you want to make a play out of the play, mine would take over. But even in a shootout scenario, I think the best, most consistent team ends up winning the game by a touchdown. Prediction: Notre-Dame (-3.5)
What college football picks can you confidently make in Week 9, and which top 10 team will be hit hard? Visit SportsLine to see which teams will win and cover the spread – all from a proven computer model that has grossed nearly $ 3,900 in profits over the past five+ seasons – and find out.