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Notre Dame Football

Notre Dame Still In Solid Shape In Face Of Conference-Only Slates

July 9, 2020

So, the dominoes are clearly beginning to tilt with regard to the 2020 College Football season.

But even as an Independent, Notre Dame remains in a strong position to play alongside everybody else who plays.

As expected, the Ivy League announced it would shift its season from the fall to the spring on Wednesday.

On Thursday, the Big Ten announced it was instituting a “conference-only” schedule and not the “conference-plus one” model Notre Dame Director of Athletics Jack Swarbrick had been pitching.

That decision will cost the Irish their October matchup against Wisconsin at Lambeau Field.

Shortly after, reports came in that the Pac-12 would follow suit, meaning Notre Dame could lose two more games, against Stanford and USC.

But a report that the ACC could be the next to turn to a conference-only schedule, included an important caveat as far as Notre Dame is concerned, dating back to ACC Commissioner John Swofford’s comments in May.

Not only would the ACC keep the six games its members have with Notre Dame, the league would help its hybrid member add as many as it needed.

“If that was something that was best for the ACC and best for Notre Dame, we would certainly have that conversation with Notre Dame,” Swofford said during a May 14 teleconference. “If both parties felt that would be a positive trying to work that out.

“I don't know all the particulars of it, but it is part of our discussions, but that’s only one of the multiple paths that this could take."

Virginia Tech, Boston College, Miami and Syracuse will all lose scheduled games against Big Ten foes and none are currently on the Irish’s slate. There’s also been chatter about potentially adding BYU to the schedule since the Irish “owe” the Cougars a game.

So, even if the Irish lose three games from Big Ten and Pac-12 opponents, it would seem easy for Notre Dame to pick up a game to get to a 10-game schedule, which ISD’s John Brice reported was the target number at this point.

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