Virginia Cavaliers vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish Game Preview

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Joe Broback

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Joe is a writer covering the NFL, NBA, NHL and college football. He also currently writes for SB Nation’s Underdog Dynasty, covering the American Athletic Conference since 2016. Joe enjoys collecting shoes, playing sports, and anything fitness related.
Joe Broback
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If you cheer for the Virginia Cavaliers, your blood pressure spiked quite a bit last week. Struggling with Old Dominion isn’t what fans had in mind when the game started, but the Cavs found a way to win. They can’t afford to have another slow start if they want to pull off the upset on the road this week. Notre Dame showed they can play with elite teams, and now needs to add a Top 25 win to their resume.

Date: September 28, 2019
How to watch: NBC
Start time: 2:30 pm CT
Line: Notre Dame -12.5
Location: Notre Dame Stadium (Notre Dame, IN)


Virginia Cavaliers players to watch

QB Bryce Perkins (843 yards passing, 6 TD – 4 INT, 193 yds rush, 2 TD)
WR Joe Reed (215 yards receiving, 3 TD)
LB Zane Zandler (29 tackles, 5.0 TFL, 1 INT, 1 TD)
LB Jordan Mack (29 tackles, 6.0 TFL, 5.0 sacks)

Notre Dame Fighting Irish players to watch

LB Jermiah Owusu-Koramoah (19 tackles, 4.5 TFL
QB Ian Book (828 yards passing, 8 TD – 2 INT, 145 yds rush, 2 TD)
WR Chase Claypool (256 yards receiving, 2 TD)
TE Cole Kmet (108 yards, 1 TD)

Virginia Cavaliers keys to the game

  • Start fast
  • Keep Perkins upright
  • Read a Book

Notre Dame Fighting Irish keys to the game

  • Contain Perkins
  • Stack the box
  • Land the first punch

Why Virginia wins

Bryce Perkins came to Virginia to start, and now he gets a chance to make a statement against a good team. He needs to get his team to start fast if they want to have a chance at beating the Irish. If Perkins is effective, the Cavaliers will be in the game. Protecting him in the passing game plays a big role too. Bronco Mendenhall will get his defense to step up to the challenge, but moving the ball against Notre Dame’s defense remains the question.

Why Notre Dame wins

They can hang with Georgia, so there’s no reason they can’t beat Virginia. The Irish defense showed it can play tough against offenses with playmakers, and they face a new challenge at quarterback. Their task is simple: stop Bryce Perkins. If the Virginia Cavaliers spring him loose, they’ll be in the game. Notre Dame’s defense knows how to pressure the quarterback, but they must contain Perkins in order to keep Virginia out of the game.

Prediction

Virginia’s looking to prove their undefeated record isn’t a hoax. Notre Dame’s looking to win a Top 25 game. Something’s got to give, and it seems like Virginia gives more than the Irish. NOTRE DAME 31 VIRGINIA 21

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