Week 11 Rooting Guide for Notre Dame Football

We all know enough to pull for Notre Dame each week. Right? There are those in the fan base who don’t, but hey, if that’s your jam, man, have at it, and just don’t read the rest of this. What about all the other stuff that could go down that would help Notre Dame’s playoff chances? Now that we’re down to a reasonable number of variables in the playoff picture, we provide you with the Official 18S Pocket-Sized* Week 11 Rooting Guide for all of college football. There’s obvious stuff, like ND wins and its opponents win, but there’s less obvious stuff that would be helpful too. When you sit down to watch the weekend’s games, keep this guide close by so you’ll know how you should try to influence each game just via caring.

* Assuming your laptop folds into eighths. I also assume nobody has some sort of wizard-y pocket sized electronic device capable of connecting to the internet. That would be weird.

Friendly reminder on gameday chats: If you haven’t already, click here to join our Slack world (easiest if done on a desktop). You’ll be prompted to set up a Slack account and walked through a brief tutorial, which you can skip if you want. Then, tap here to download the iPhone/iPad app or tap here to download the Android app. Once you sign in to the app you’ll be added to the “the-lobby” channel automatically, where we post a link for that week’s channel.

Note that all times below are Eastern, because as Chris Petersen can tell you, everybody hates the West Coast.

Friday

  • Stanford (+6) vs. #9 Washington, 10:30 PM, FS1: Any slim hope we have of Stanford counting as a quality win requires them to beat Washington. More importantly, a Stanford win would also knock the Pac 12 out of playoff contention, as Washington is the last conference team left with fewer than two losses. NB: The Shaw Exception allows you to root for Washington to stomp the ever-living daylights out of them anyway.

Saturday

  • #12 Michigan State (+15!) at #13 Ohio State, Noon, Fox: This is a tricky situation. A Michigan State win would burnish Notre Dame’s resume, but an Ohio State win would place them in the Big Ten title game where they presumably would have a better chance to knock off Wisconsin than Sparty would. Presumably. There are pros and cons to either side, so feel free to root either way in this one. Me, I’m hoping Urbie “enjoys” some hot Papa John’s after the final whistle.
  • #23 NC State (-3) at Boston College, Noon, ABC/ESPN2: While both are Irish opponents, it’s clearly more helpful to Notre Dame if NC State wins and stays in the top 25. Let’s hope Doeren can set aside his obsession over who ate the strawberry ice cream long enough to build a quality game plan.
  • #17 Virginia Tech (-3) at Georgia Tech, 12:20 PM, ACCN: Only of marginal importance for Notre Dame, but it would be nice if the Hokies can uphold the quality of Miami’s win over them to in turn uphold the quality of Notre Dame’s forthcoming beatdown of Miami. The power of positive thinking.
  • Wake Forest (+1) at Syracuse, 3:00 PM, ACCN: A Wake Forest win would be a significant step towards finishing with a winning record. That’s important, since the committee looks at wins over teams with a winning record.
  • #1 Georgia (-2.5) at #10 Auburn, 3:30 PM, CBS: This is another fuzzy one. Preserving the Georgia game as “the best possible loss” is a positive, but if you’re concerned about the SEC getting two teams into the playoffs (the 18S staff is divided on that), an Auburn win is very helpful. Georgia already clinched the SEC East; if they drop one to Auburn or, ahem, Kentucky, a loss in the SEC championship game would definitely knock them out of the playoff. Auburn already has two losses, incidentally, so they’re not a serious playoff risk.
  • Florida State (+17) at #4 Clemson, 3:30 PM, ESPN: Soooo… Technically speaking, it would be better for Notre Dame if Clemson drops this game, as it would remove them from playoff contention and give NC State sole possession of the division lead. However, I can never fault anyone for not rooting for Florida State. I certainly won’t be rooting for them.
  • #20 Iowa (+12.5) at #8 Wisconsin, 3:30 PM, ABC: Put an asterisk next to this one, as an Iowa win would all but kill the Big Ten’s playoff hopes. Nobody from the East will make the playoffs at this point, and given their pathetic schedule, a one-loss conference champ Wisconsin won’t either.
  • Maryland (+16.5) vs. Michigan, 3:30 PM, BTN: You know why.
  • #11 USC (-13.5) at Colorado, 4:00 PM, Fox: USC can wrap up the Pac 12 South with a win against the morbid Buffs, which does two good things: They’ll probably move into the top ten through normal attrition and become an even higher-quality win for Notre Dame, and they have the best shot of anyone in the South at knocking off Washington in the conference title game. For some reason I have nowhere near as much difficulty with rooting for USC as I do with Ohio State or Florida State. Hm.
  • #16 Mississippi State (+14) vs. #2 Alabama, 7:00 PM, ESPN: Unlike the other high-profile SEC game this week, there’s no question about what’s best for Notre Dame here. An Alabama loss would push them out of the top four temporarily at least, and would ensure that they would be left out if they lose the SEC championship game.
  • #6 TCU (+6.5) at #5 Oklahoma, 8:00 PM, Fox: This is sort of a no-win game for Irish fans, but also a no-lose. The loser will pick up a second loss and be out of playoff contention, so that’s a good thing. The winner, however, will gain a high-quality win and a clear path to the Big 12 title game, where they’ll get another shot at a high-quality win. It’s marginally better for TCU to win, as Oklahoma already has two quality wins (#13 Ohio State and #15 Oklahoma State) and TCU has just one (#15 Oklahoma State). The Big 12 title game will likely be a rematch of this one, which seems unfair to the winner; on the other hand, the Big 12 made its own bed by forcing a conference title game without divisions.
By |2018-05-09T22:25:48+00:00November 10th, 2017|Football|33 Comments

33
Leave a Reply

Please Login to comment
9 Comment threads
24 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
15 Comment authors
Eric MurtaughMikeyBKGRappongirish_bandit_10 Recent comment authors
newest oldest most voted
FasterThanQuick
FasterThanQuick

I’m getting close to believing in a “win and in” scenario. If the Irish can take care of business and beat Miami Saturday but anything more than one score, they will have secured as convincing of a resume as anybody short of UGA and Bama are capable of. And Bama hasn’t had a chance to build theirs until starting this weekend.

Sure, the bottom could fall out and any of the resume-building wins could lose their luster, but chances of our entire schedule going south at this point aren’t very high – no higher than for most.

Clearwall
Clearwall

I’m with you on this. All of these other games would be nice for padding, but ND is in if it wins out. No other team will have the resume and only Oklahoma, I think would give us any threat but I still dont think they’d knock us out. Even if you have last years champ, Clemson get in because their record is identical and their quality wins are similar(though inferior) they will have more of the eye test and even though it’s taboo to say, name recognition. Same applies to ND as well. After Miami, the OU/tOSU win is only slightly better but it was so far ago, I think the ND case will be stronger. We also will have name recognition and momentum that I dont think will drop us out.

Rappong
Rappong

Everyone is viewing the games solely through the lens of the playoff committee rankings. One could view the games from other perspectives, such as the view that we want teams we compete against in recruiting to do poorly. We don’t really compete against Colorado for recruits (Deion Smith is an exception, but maybe the only exception), while we constantly are competing against USC in recruiting. Should I want Washington to beat Stanford, and Colorado to beat USC, because it would help us land Amon-Ra, etc? I recognize that making the playoffs is of foremost importance, but wonder whether the recruiting angle doesn’t merit some consideration.

Football was a verb
Football was a verb

The Big10 spreads feel off to me. Either Vegas didn’t watch the Iowa OSU game or they’re dismissing it as a fluke.

hooks orpik
hooks orpik

Yeah, I’m wondering what they know about Iowa that we don’t. Taking the points seems way too obvious and like a really good bet. Might hammer it, but almost weary that is seems to good to be true.

Underthrown Shoelace
Underthrown Shoelace

Vegas tends to take advantage of reactionary betters and teams in a letdown/redemption spot.

Sparty is coming off an OT loss and a 7 hour win, the buckeyes got hammered by Iowa but are back home and still have plenty to play for.

Same thing for Iowa, going on the road after an emotional win, Wisconsin is motivated and better rested.

Another angle is, i don’t think these lines would be that much different if Iowa had lost by 31 and Msu lost to penn state. Vegas doesn’t like to budge from its preliminary assesssment of teams (you see how slow they were to credit the irish this season)

Scarponi
Scarponi

While in practice it makes no difference, I think it would be more accurate to say that as a whole those betting on the games don’t like to budge from their preliminary assessment of teams and Vegas sets the lines accordingly.

Underthrown Shoelace
Underthrown Shoelace

Sure, I think you could use sharp betters/Vegas almost interchangeably. If Vegas were to set the line to reflect the opinion of joe blow gambler who shifts from week to week, Wisconsin by 6.5 and Ohio state by 10 might make more sense. But if they did that they would get bombarded by sharp money going the other way.

Scarponi
Scarponi

This would presume that sharp money is the majority of the betting (at least in dollars if not numbers), now I could be wrong, but I suspect the majority of the money that runs through Vegas sports betting is more from the joe blow gambler.

So my point as I meant it was: where Vegas sets the line is where it thinks it can get half the money above and half the money below the line, NOT necessarily where the experts in Vegas, or even the sharp money thinks the game will ultimately play out. So I don’t think Vegas is slow to move the line based on its OWN preliminary assessments, but on the slowness of the overall betting field to catch up with reality from early assessments. Smart money isn’t smart money because it knows better than Vegas, its smart money because it knows better than the rest of the betting field. Vegas in reality isn’t trying to predict game outcomes, its trying to predict the betting patterns.

Underthrown Shoelace
Underthrown Shoelace

If Auburn wins out they are in. But I don’t see them beating Georgia twice and Alabama. With that said I think we absolutely want Aubrun to beat Georgia. A loss to the number 1 team vs the 2 team isn’t a big difference, but it would free up a spot if Georgia were to lose 2 games. I’m not sure a 1 loss Alabama would get in if they lost to Georgia. Their best wins would be Miss state, Lsu and auburn, all fringe top 25 teams with 3-5 losses.

Clemson losing is at the top of my list as it definitively eliminates another conference and the Tigers don’t have many challenges left on the schedule. Wisconsin could lose any of their last 4 games, not too worried about them.

I think TCU winning would be huge, they’re not passing us. The OU name combined with an Ohio state out of conference win would probably put them over the top.

Michael Bryan

Agreed across the board. TCU winning out is nice at 12-1 + conference champ, but their best wins (if the next tier doesn’t mess up) then will be over 10-3 Oklahoma, 10-2 Okie State, and then likely unranked teams like Iowa State, WVU. Don’t think it will get them in over our 11-1 resume.

Concrete Charlie
Concrete Charlie

TCU-OU. I am rooting for the game to be tied 77-77 at the end of regulation, Then each team will score three touchdowns in OT, with the loser dropping a wide-open easy catch for the 2 point conversion (i.e. no defensive credit at all). Reverse said outcome in the “Championship”.

nd09hls12
nd09hls12

FWIW, the FiveThirtyEight model has the following as the biggest games for ND, in order (though note it is weighted by probability of win, so a major upset will be a bigger swing than a 50-50 game):

Mississippi State over Alabama
Florida State over Clemson
Auburn over Georgia
Iowa over Wisconsin
Stanford over UW
Oklahoma over TCU
BC over NC State (interesting)
USC over Colorado

Interestingly, the model has the Utah-Washington State as more relevant to our playoff chances than Michigan State-Ohio State. Our odds go down 1% point (probably less than a percentage, just rounded) if Washington State wins. Presumably that is because Wazzou L lessens the potential for a big win by UW.

Anyways, I’m not going to cheer for BC.

nd09hls12
nd09hls12

err that should be TCU over Oklahoma*

irish_bandit_10
irish_bandit_10

I disagree about NC State vs. BC because I don’t think it matters who wins. If NC State wins, it validates that we beat a good team, so long as they beat Wake next week (which I’m not super confident about). If BC wins, they’re pretty likely to beat UConn and Syracuse and finish the season on a 6-game win streak with a suddenly prolific offense.

The worst case scenario is NCSU beats BC, then loses to Wake.

MikeyB
MikeyB

It’s just really nice that I don’t have to be too concerned about the outcome of those first two games. I don’t think Washington jumps us if we both win out, so I don’t have to actively root for David Shaw (and if he wins, he’s done us a favor anyway). And I don’t have to root for Dantonio or Urban Meyer, because it probably doesn’t help/hurt us much either way; so I’ll just root for one of them to lose in a painfully excruciating way! Oh the joys of college athletics!

Eric Murtaugh

10:30 eastern start for Stanford-UW tonight, huh?

Cool, cool.