I Couldn't Have Been More Wrong About Notre Dame This Season.

A few days after Notre Dame’s best defensive player in 2011, freshman Aaron Lynch, transferred to South Florida in April, I wrote this about Brian Kelly and Notre Dame:

“Smells like a 6-6 regular season.”

Freshman superstar and future 1st round lock leaves. Safety Harrison Smith, the glue to a shaky secondary, graduated and was drafted in the 1st round by the Vikings. The Irish had a QB quandary. The schedule was among the toughest in the country, with three games against preseason Top 10 teams (and three more against teams ranked 11-32). And then there was the 3rd year jinx to hit the last three Notre Dame coaches!

I’m thrilled Brian Kelly has proven me wrong. (It’s too bad he couldn’t pulled this off last year; in January 2011 I thought the Irish were BCS-bound. Ahhh, Dayne Crist.)

Which brings us to Notre Dame-Oklahoma, the game of the week in college football.

Does Notre Dame have a shot? The Irish are 10.5 point underdogs, and Bob Stoops, the Oklahoma coach known for a yearly choke, already gagged one up at home this year (to Kansas State). Virtually nobody is giving the Irish a chance. A Notre Dame win (dare to dream!) would vault the Irish into serious BCS title game contention, with only one difficult matchup left on the schedule at USC.

It’s a classic offense (Oklahoma, 5th in scoring at 44.7 ppg) vs. defense (Notre Dame, 2nd in scoring defense at 9.4 ppg) matchup.

Twenty-four years ago, this could have been Jamelle Holieway vs. Tony Rice in a showdown of dueling options.

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