Preview: Virginia Tech at Notre Dame

When: 3:30 PM ET, Saturday, November 19, 2016
Where: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, Indiana


The plan at this point of the season for Notre Dame was supposed to involve a close eye on the College Football Playoff rankings, but nothing is going according to plan in 2016. The Fighting Irish will just be trying to move a step closer to bowl eligibility when they host Virginia Tech on Saturday.

Notre Dame needs to win its final two games to reach the six wins needed for bowl eligibility and put a complete game together on both sides of the ball in a 44-6 win over Army last week. "The season is one week at a time here now, and obviously two weeks is all that's left in their regular season," Fighting Irish coach Brian Kelly told reporters. "So from that perspective, you know, everybody tends to ratchet it up and focus a lot more on the day-to-day, especially when you have 18 to 21-year-olds. Anything that can stay right in front of them is always a positive." The Hokies were 14th in the CFP rankings and trying to figure out a path to the playoff through the ACC championship game last week before losing to Georgia Tech at home and falling all the out of the top 25. "Since the way they have played overall, the way (the players) have conducted themselves, the games they have won and how they played on the road, that dream (of an ACC title) is not dead," Virginia Tech coach Justin Fuente told reporters. "We have a pretty clear choice. We can respond and pick ourselves up to go get after it and be ready to go. We still have two games ahead of us."

TV:
3:30 p.m. ET, NBC. LINE: Notre Dame -1

ABOUT VIRGINIA TECH (7-3): The Hokies can still clinch the Coastal Division and a spot in the ACC Championship game, and a likely date with fifth-ranked Clemson, with a win over Virginia in the season finale on Nov. 26. Quarterback Jerod Evans passed for 316 yards and ran for 75 more while accounting for three touchdowns against Georgia Tech but was intercepted twice and Virginia Tech committed four turnovers in the 30-20 loss. Wide receiver Isaiah Ford caught eight passes in the loss to give him 189 for his career, breaking Jarrett Boykin's school record of 184.

ABOUT NOTRE DAME (4-6): The Fighting Irish, who close the regular season at No. 19 USC next week, are finally getting consistent play from quarterback DeShone Kizer, who was in danger of losing his job after the team totaled 13 points in back-to-back losses to North Carolina State and Stanford. Kizer threw for eight touchdowns and one interception in the last three games while completing 65.6 percent of his passes and helping with his legs as well. Notre Dame's defense starred against Army, continuing a trend that sees the team allowing an average of 17.6 points in the last five after giving up 33.4 in the first five contests.

EXTRA POINTS

1. Evans needs two touchdown passes to tie Tyrod Taylor's single-season school record of 24 and three more TDs overall to move past Logan Thomas' record of 30.

2. Notre Dame WR Torii Hunter Jr. (knee) sat out last week and is day-to-day.

3. Fighting Irish LB James Onwualu leads the team with 9.5 tackles for loss and ranks third in total tackles (60).

PREDICTION: Virginia Tech 27, Notre Dame 24

Stats and Records

Team Comparison

  W/L Strk PF PA Home Away Grass Turf Conf
Virginia Tech 7-3 L1 33.4 21.2 4-2 3-1 7-2 0-0 5-2
Notre Dame 4-6 W1 31.3 25.5 3-4 1-2 3-5 0-0 1-0

Last Meeting

Virginia Tech Notre Dame
Date Away Home Tot Rus Pas Tot Rus Pas
No Previous Meeting.

Player Stats

Previous Matchup
Passing Player COMP% YDS TD INT
VT N/A
ND N/A
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
VT N/A
ND N/A
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
VT N/A
ND N/A
TDs Player TD
VT N/A
ND N/A
Season
Passing Player COMP% YDS TD INT
VT J. Evans 63.1 2525 22 4
ND D. Kizer 60.5 2470 22 8
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
VT J. Evans 132 608 4.6 6
ND J. Adams 128 653 5.1 3
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
VT I. Ford 58 795 13.7 7
ND E. St. Brown 45 777 17.3 8
TDs Player TD
VT I. Ford 7
ND E. St. Brown 8

Quickchart Matchup

Virginia Tech Off vs  Notre Dame Def
444.3 yards
371.5 yards
4 yards/rush
4.1 yards/rush
8.1 yards/attempt
7.4 yards/attempt
Notre Dame Off vs  Virginia Tech Def
415.4 yards
329 yards
4.4 yards/rush
3.8 yards/rush
8.1 yards/attempt
6.2 yards/attempt

Matchup Stats - Full Matchup

Virginia Tech Overall Notre Dame
7-3-0 W/L 4-6-0
4-6-0 ATS 4-6-0
5-5-0 O/U 4-6-0
33.4 Pts For 31.3
21.2 Pts Against 25.5
Virginia Tech A/H Notre Dame
3-1 W/L 3-4
1-3-0 ATS 3-4-0
1-3-0 O/U 3-4-0
28.5 Pts For 31.3
22.8 Pts Against 27.0