This Saturday the Stanford Cardinal (8-3) will host the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (9-2). Kickoff is set for 8:00 EST at Stanford Stadium and will be televised nationally on ABC.
Oddsmakers currently have the Fighting Irish listed as a 2-point road favorite with the total set at 57 points. Click here for a full look at our Week 13 NCAAF betting schedule, plus more links to our game previews.
Notre Dame vs Stanford Vegas Game Odds & Betting Preview
The Irish were able to bounce back from their ugly loss at Miami with a 24-17 win at home against Navy, but came no where close to covering as a 21-point favorite. Notre Dame had to feel a bit fortunate just to win the game, as they trailed 10-17 midway through the 3rd quarter.
The Cardinal also come in off a win, where they failed to cover as a big favorite. Stanford defeated Cal at home 17-14 as a 16-point favorite. While the Cardinal never trailed, their largest lead was just 11-points.
Stanford has won each of the last two meetings in the series. They won 38-36 at home as a 4-point favorite in 2015 and last year won 17-10 at Notre Dame as a 3-point dog.
College Football Betting Free Pick & Predictions: Notre Dame -2
I think the value here is with the Irish laying less than a field goal against the Cardinal. Notre Dame’s playoff hopes took a huge hit with their loss to Miami. I wasn’t the least bit surprised to see them struggle against Navy last week, in fact, I was all over the Midshipmen in that spot.
The key here that even though it’s a bit of a long-shot, Notre Dame is not out of the playoff picture just yet and I believe that’s the key to backing the Irish in this contest. If Notre Dame was completely out of it, there’s no chance I would take them on the road against a good Stanford team, but with a shot I think they not only win, but win comfortably.
Click on the link for more free NCAA football picks from our expert handicappers.
I know the Cardinal just recently knocked off Washington at home, which was a great win, I just don’t think this team is as good as people think. That win over the Huskies is their only win against a top tier opponent. One thing that stands out to me is that both of these teams played USC and the results were the complete opposite. Stanford lost 24-42 to the Trojans, while Notre Dame dominated USC 49-14.
The two teams that were able to beat the Irish this season were Georgia and Miami, who are two of the best defenses in the country when it comes to stopping the run. Simply put, if Notre Dame can’t run the ball, the offense has a hard time moving the ball, as Brandon Wimbush just isn’t that polished of a passer.
This is not your usual dominant Stanford defense. In fact, it’s one of the worst in recent memory. One of their biggest struggles has been stopping the run, as they are giving up 171.7 ypg and 4.7 yards/carry. The last time that Stanford allowed more than 170 rushing yards/game was in 2006 when they finished 1-11. I look for Wimbush and star running back Josh Adams to make life miserable for the Notre Dame defense.
The other big key here is that Stanford’s offense is all about their ability to get Bryce Love going, but he’s just not been the same player since he suffered an ankle injury in the win over Oregon back in the middle of October. He might break one big run, but overall I look for the Irish to key on him and force Stanford to try and move the ball through the air. At the same time, I think Notre Dame still has an excellent shot at winning here even if Love has a big game, as I just don’t think their defense will be able to keep the Irish in check. Give me Notre Dame -2.