The rebirth of a rivalry that dominated college football in the mid to late 80’s will resume Saturday at Soldier Field in Chicago when Miami and Notre Dame take the field for the first regular season game since 1990.
The two met in the 2010 Sun Bowl that Notre Dame won 33-17, but this will be the first of a three-game series. The two will play a home-and-home series in 2016-17, but this game will be the start of what each school hopes will ignite a stagnant rivalry.
Once upon a time these two teams were the cream of the crop in college football and annually found each other fighting for national championships, but it has been a long time since Notre Dame was in position to compete for a title.
For the first time in a decade, the Fighting Irish are sitting with a flawless 4-0 record and will put their unblemished record on the line vs. the 4-1 Hurricanes who are coming off a game vs. NC State where Stephen Morris threw for a Geno Smith-like 566 yards.
The 566 yards are not only a Miami record, but also tops for the ACC– the conference Notre Dame will be soon competing with five times in the near future.
While Miami has their quarterback situation locked up, Notre Dame finds itself in a two-quarterback situation with Tommy Rees coming on in relief of Everett Golson who is experiencing some growing pains in his first year as a starter.
As Notre Dame shuffles the quarterbacks in and out of the lineup, the defense has been overpowering its opponents and forcing turnovers at will. The plus-nine turnover margin places the Irish third nationally after forcing six turnovers vs. Michigan in their last game.
Linebacker Manti Te’o will continue to lead the Irish defense a Hurricane offense hitting their stride and Saturday night in Chicago will provide college fans a glimpse into what many hope will be the dawn of a new, old rivalry.
Prediction: Notre Dame wins 27-17
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Patrick is a diehard Chicago sports and avid college football fan, and the host of “The Wake-up Call,” a weekly sports show on Sportstownchicago.com Wednesday mornings from 8-10. View his show’s website here.