The Fighting Irish were upset in South Bend this weekend by the unranked Marshall Thundering Herd by a final score of 26-21.
The (#8) Notre Dame Fighting Irish will very likely fall out of national title contention following their 26-21 home loss Saturday at the hands of the Thundering Herd out of Huntington, West Virginia.
Last week, Notre Dame put up a valiant effort against the (#3) Ohio State Buckeyes in a 21-10 season-opening loss in Columbus. But this week, Notre Dame was heavily favored to get their first win of the season.
The University of Marshall sealed the game late in the fourth quarter with a pair of interceptions. The first was a 37-yard “Pick Six” by cornerback Steven Gilmore – which came out of the hands of Notre Dame’s starting quarterback Tyler Buchner to make the score 26-15 with 4:35 to play.
Buchner would then come out of the game after scrambling for first down yardage on the next drive. Two plays later, substitute QB Drew Pyne threw an interception deep in Thundering Herd territory.
The Fighting Irish did come up with a blocked punt by team captain Bo Bauer that gave Notre Dame the opportunity to score on a touchdown pass with 12 seconds remaining, but the final score was set once Marshall recovered the ensuing onside kick.
The University of Marshall entered the “Week 2” contest against Notre Dame as a three-touchdown underdog with a moneyline wager of approximately +1000.
No Fighting Irish Football Coach Had Ever Lost First Three Games Of Career
The plight now faced by first-year Notre Dame head coach Marcus Freeman is daunting, who is now 0-3 overall as Notre Dame’s sideline shot caller.
No head football coach in the history of Notre Dame’s program had ever dropped his first three football games of a coaching career. But that’s precisely the unwanted record that the (now 0-2) Fighting Irish will be in danger of eclipsing this coming weekend when they host the University of California Golden Bears on September 17th.
The first loss of the season was expected by Notre Dame sports betting fans, who easily capitalized on the +17 point spread odds against Ohio State in a touch (yet anticipated) season-opening loss against the Buckeyes.
However, this second loss so early in the season was neither anticipated nor considered a viable possibility according to the legal sports betting market in the Hoosier State.
How Far Will Notre Dame Drop In The Next AP Top 25 Poll?
Although it seems inconceivable that the Fighting Irish would drop completely out of the Associated Press Top 25 College Football Poll after only two games played, strong performances this Saturday by previously unranked teams (including the University of Marshall) could make that scenario a reality.
How can the (now 2-0) Marshall Thundering Herd not enter the Top 25 after offing the (#8) ranked team in the nation at their home stadium?
And furthermore, pollsters will likely grant the University of Texas Longhorns a Top 25 spot this week following their near-win against the (#1) ranked Alabama Crimson Tide in Austin.
Heisman trophy winner Bryce Young was forced to lead his team on a comeback drive in the final minute of the game in a 20-19 final score in Austin this Saturday to keep the Crimson Tide undefeated at 2-0.
The (#2) ranked Georgia Bulldogs took care of business against unranked Samford while the (#4) ranked Clemson Tigers did the same against Furman while the (#14) Michigan State Spartans did the same at home versus Akron.
However, the unranked Appalachian State Mountaineers went into College Station and pulled off a remarkable upset against the (#6) ranked Texas A&M Aggies by a score of 17-14.
Meanwhile, the Texas Tech Red Raiders put the (#25) ranked Houston Cougars to the test in a thrilling double-overtime 33-30 upset win — plus, the Washington State Cougars outlasted the (#19) Wisconsin Badgers 17-14 in Madison.
And that’s not all. The unranked University of North Carolina Tar Heels are now 3-0 after their 35-28 win over Georgia State in Atlanta.
Will Futures Betting “Parity” Become A Theme This College Football Season?
Less than a month ago, Circa Sportsbook Director Matt Metcalf pointed out to ESPN that college football futures bets were suffering from a lack of action due to a perceived lack of parity in the NCAA Division I national title chase.
However, Alabama’s penalty-ridden escape from Memorial Stadium on Saturday, as well as the performances put forth by Marshall, Appalachian State, Washington State, Texas Tech, and others, could bring more action into the college football futures market during Q4-2022.
As for Notre Dame, the Fighting Irish will likely be favored at home in their September 17th matchup against California, yet will almost definitely find themselves far out of reach from the Associated Press “Top 10” teams once the next poll is released.
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