With the college football season in full swing, fans across the nation are on the edge of their seats as the anticipated clash between Ohio State and Notre Dame approaches. With the big game approaching, the CFP is on everyone’s mind. So our question is: When the Buckeyes or the Fighting Irish lose in South Bend, can they still carve a path to the College Football Playoff?
- 🏈 Event: Ohio State Buckeyes (6) @ Notre Dame Fighting Irish (9)
- 🏟️ Venue: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, IN
- 📅 Date: Saturday, September 23rd, 2023
- ⏰ Time: 7:30 pm ET
- 📺 TV: NBC
- 🎲 Odds: Ohio State -3 -118 / O/U 55 -110
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Buckeyes or Bust for Irish?
Notre Dame’s Sam Hartman, the transfer from Wake Forest, has been a revelation. Within a short span, he’s seamlessly transitioned from a the new man on campus to one of the most talked-about players in college football, putting himself in early Heisman Trophy conversations.
His consistent performances, including an impressive 330-yard passing game against Central Michigan, are part of the reason the Fighting Irish are in the playoff conversation.
While the clash against Ohio State is pivotal, Notre Dame has other hurdles to clear. Up next is a surprisingly formidable Duke team, which recently stunned Clemson and now sits at 18th in the rankings.
Furthermore, the clash with USC looms large on the horizon. Should Clemson rebound and find themselves back in the top 25, Notre Dame will have another shot at solidifying their credentials. However, for now, their playoff fate seems tightly bound to the outcomes of the Ohio State and USC games.
Loss Not Terminal for Ohio State
On the other side, Ohio State boasts Marvin Harrison Jr., a player many analysts believe might be the best in college football this season. His astounding skills and ability to make game-changing plays have made life considerably more comfortable for the Buckeyes’ starting quarterback, Kyle McCord.
As McCord continues to adjust to the pressures and expectations of leading a high-profile program, having a weapon like Harrison Jr. at his disposal is invaluable.
Beyond Notre Dame, Ohio State’s journey to the playoff includes matchups against more formidable opponents. Penn State remains a key contest, and the season finale against Michigan will offer them another chance to prove their worth.
𝕿𝖍𝖊 Hunt is on 🔎 pic.twitter.com/EBnnwoReBn
— Ohio State Football (@OhioStateFB) September 20, 2023
Bigger Game for Notre Dame?
The road to the College Football Playoff is seldom smooth. As both Ohio State and Notre Dame gear up for their epic showdown, it’s essential to remember that, in the vast landscape of a college football season, one game does not determine destiny.
However, with that said, a loss against Notre Dame might not be as terminal to the Buckeyes as it could be for the Irish. A close loss here and wins over Penn State and Michigan might be enough for the Buckeyes to squeeze in, but the same can’t be said for the Irish.
This could make this a bigger game for Notre Dame, and mean the Irish need to find a way to eke out a victory more than Ohio State does. Nevertheless, it’s all set up for a belter on Saturday evening.
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