Navy Midshipmen vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Date and Time: Saturday, November 18, 2017, 3:30 p.m. ET
Location: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, IN
Opening College Football Odds: Check Back Later
Navy vs. Notre Dame TV Coverage: NBC
If the Selection Committee looks at this 41-8 loss to Miami at face value, the Irish are in a lot of trouble. That said, anyone who watched the game knows that Josh Adams and Brandon Wimbush were playing hurt. These two men are clearly the best offensive players Notre Dame has to offer, and if they're at full strength in this game, we have to wonder if the outcome is a bit different.
Still, the Fighting Irish now know that their fate is in the hands of the other teams around them. With enough chaos and wins over Navy and Stanford to end the season, the Golden Domers could stick around in the discussion. Without a 13th game to play, though, it's hard to really give this team the nod over any of the conference champs, especially after getting dumped so badly by Miami.
This Navy team is pretty darn good, too. The Middies were ranked after their 5-0 start to the season, but they went on a three-game slide that included losses to Memphis, UCF and Temple. The ship was righted with a 43-40 win over SMU last week in Annapolis, and that at least assures them of a spot in a bowl game this year. With games left against Notre Dame, Houston and Army, there were no guarantees.
The biggest question in this game is whether Zach Abey will be under center or not. This is a tough kid for sure, one who has been whacked more than probably any other quarterback in America this season. That's the nature of the triple-option for sure, but Abey has had it worse this year than most. He has already suffered a concussion and picked up a shoulder injury, and finally, he had to sit last week against SMU.
Malcolm Perry started at quarterback in his place and was picked off on his lone pass attempt, yet he still ran for 282 yards and four touchdowns, including an electrifying 92-yard touchdown run that broke the record for the longest play in Navy's history at home at Navy-Marine Corps Stadium.
Of course, Perry really is a running back and not a quarterback, but the way he guides this offense, he can play any position he wants. Perry has 77 carries for 736 yards and has 10 receptions for 267 yards with a total of nine touchdowns.
Abey, though, is the leader of this team and is a special talent with his 1,202 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns to lead the Midshipmen this year.
Navy vs. Notre Dame Free Picks
Navy has covered three of the last four games in this series and even pulled off a rare upset last season in South Bend, 28-27. The Midshipmen have had at least 318 rushing yards in four straight games in this series, and they're a good bet to top three bills on the ground once again.
Notre Dame has been finding ways to win games, and that's why we're having such a hard time betting against it at all of the best online sportsbooks. Still, this is a lot of points to be giving a good team, and we have a hunch this will come down to the wire.
College Football ATS Pick: Take the Points with Navy at BookMaker.eu
College Football Score Prediction: Notre Dame 35, Navy 28