This is Notre Dame’s bye week. Any “Who, what, when, where, why and by how much” ponderings do not really apply this week. Instead, it comes down to “What to watch” and “What to read.”
Partly due to the Irish not playing, there are no top-25 matchups this weekend. There are, however, still a handful of good games. If spending this fall Saturday indoors with football on the screen, consider these options:
12 p.m. ET on ESPN2 — Florida State at Duke. A loss here would just about put a wrap on the Seminoles’ season.
3:30 p.m. ET on ABC — Georgia Tech at No. 11 Miami (FL). The triple option is one of worthwhile two hurdles standing between the Hurricanes and meeting Notre Dame undefeated. The other comes the week immediately prior that game, when Miami hosts Virginia Tech.
3:30 p.m. ET on Big Ten Network — Purdue at No. 7 Wisconsin. If watching the triple option hurts your senses, perhaps turn toward the Midwest. Boilermakers head coach Jeff Brohm will be determined not to let this turn into a typical Big Ten rock fight.
3:45 p.m. ET on ESPNU — No. 25 Navy at Memphis. Again considering an Irish outlook, if the Midshipmen can get past the Tigers, they will have only one more difficult contest (next week vs. Central Florida) before traveling to Notre Dame. Those two games could lead to two Navy losses or they could lead to a rolling 9-0 entrance to South Bend.
8 p.m. ET on ABC — Utah at No. 13 USC. Utah may not be ranked, but this is essentially a top-25 game and certainly a Pac-12 indicator. In addition to that, the Trojans will be looking to build momentum before the primetime tilt with the Irish next weekend.
10:30 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network — Boise State at No. 19 San Diego State. Do not let the time, the network or the school names fool you. This very well could be the best game this weekend.
11:00 p.m. ET on FS1 — Oregon at No. 23 Stanford. The Cardinal are still in the thick of the race for the Pac-12 North Division, but a loss to the Ducks would change that.
THIS WEEK’S INSIDE THE IRSH READING:
— Monday Afternoon Leftovers: Notre Dame has already exceeded many of 2016’s totals
— Notre Dame’s Opponents: Second half of schedule continues to look even more impressive
— A statistical look at Notre Dame’s offense through six games compared to the past
— Notre Dame’s defense has limited scoring, but what keys have led to that?
— A Notre Dame Bye Week Mailbag: On bowls, momentum & passing game struggles
— Friday at 4: 40 predictions updated & 4 more for the next six weeks
INSIDE THE IRISH COVERAGE FROM THE NORTH CAROLINA GAME
— Notre Dame stifles North Carolina throughout 33-10 victory
— Things We Learned: Notre Dame can turn to Book, though may prefer not to
— Sunday Notre Dame Notebook: Recover, relax, recruit and ready for USC (and Navy)
THIS WEEK’S OUTSIDE READING:
— 538 gives Notre Dame an 11 percent chance of finishing 11-1
— ESPN’s midseason All-America team
— Oregon State head coach Gary Andersen said he would walk away from $12.6 million and he did just that
— The NCAA formed a commission to look into the current college basketball scandal. It is led by Condoleezza Rice and also has Notre Dame. Pres. Fr. John Jenkins on it.