Staff Predictions: Navy
Observer Sports Staff | Friday, November 17, 2017
Ben Padanilam — Editor-in-Chief
Nothing went right for the Irish on Saturday.
They played their worst game of the season against a very good team in Miami (FL), and the 41-8 result indicated just that.
And now, with Notre Dame out of the playoff picture and having put together five consecutive concerning quarters of football, the question heading into this game is a simple one: Which Notre Dame team — the one ranked No. 3 heading to Florida or the beaten one that left — will we see Saturday?
I’m going to guess closer to the former.
I expect Senior Day to provide extra motivation for the Irish. So should the desire to put last weekend’s embarrassment behind them. And with injuries at the quarterback spot, Navy probably won’t be at full strength, either.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 38, Navy 21
Marek Mazurek — Assistant Managing Editor
There’s not a lot to take away from Notre Dame’s blowout loss to Miami from a X’s and O’s standpoint. The Irish were dominated in every aspect of the game, and a lot of that falls on Brian Kelly for not having his team better prepared.
The only thing to judge Notre Dame’s upcoming game against Navy by is whether or not you believe Kelly and the captains can turn the mindset of the team around in time for a run to a New Year’s Six bowl.
I believe they can. Especially on Senior Day versus an opponent they lost to last year.
Look for Notre Dame to avenge last week and the loss to Navy last season with a vastly improved offensive attack against an undersized and less talented Midshipmen defense.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 28, Navy 14
Elizabeth Greason — Sports Editor
Last week took the wind out of Notre Dame’s sails. Offensively, the Irish couldn’t get anything going and on defense, nothing went right.
Navy is never an easy task for Notre Dame — the Midshipmen’s triple option attack always poses a challenge. However, with this year’s matchup coming on Senior Day and the week after a blowout loss, the Irish will have additional incentives.
The Irish run game should be back in full force, and Brandon Wimbush should come out with a renewed confidence after a week of practice. There are a wide variety of possible outcomes to Saturday’s matchup with the Midshipmen, but Notre Dame should be able to right the ship this weekend to take down Navy and end up victorious in its last home game this season.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 31, Navy 17
Tobias Hoonhout — Associate Sports Editor
Last week’s loss to Miami furthered the narrative of road struggles for Notre Dame in the Brian Kelly era. It also made it possible for the Irish to slip to another loss Saturday against Navy, much like 2014.
The question now is whether Notre Dame can rally and push for a strong end to the season. And while Navy always poses a challenge, the Irish undoubtedly have the talent to pull out the win.
The biggest concern for Notre Dame should be capitalizing on its possessions and keeping the Navy offense off the field as much as possible. If the Irish offense does that, it should be a long day for Navy.
Don’t be surprised if Brandon Wimbush bounces back in a big way this Saturday and Notre Dame gets back to its winning ways.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 38, Navy 17
Daniel O’Boyle — Sports Writer
Notre Dame fell back to earth hard last week with a blowout defeat to Miami.
Navy will always present a unique challenge, which means they’re far from the perfect team for Notre Dame to bounce back against. But a weak pass defense and health questions at quarterback means the Midshipmen should give the Irish an opportunity to get back into the swing of things.
The Irish might have a few adjustment problems with the Navy offense, and they will need to do a much better job at getting their defense off the field than last year when they lost to Navy. But their talent should be more than enough for a win, and when the team gets on top, the mindset of domination could return.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 41, Navy 14