We are now mere hours from the kickoff of Notre Dame’s biggest game of the season thus far. The Irish are set to square off with the Badgers in a long-awaited matchup, the first of which was postponed last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic rescheduling.
Countdown to Kickoff
- Kickoff: 12:00 PM ET
- Where: Soldier Field; Chicago, IL
- Opposing Coach: Paul Chryst (50-27, 7 years at Wisconsin
- Series: Notre Dame leads 8-6-2
How to Watch Notre Dame Today
Today’s game is a rare noon kickoff and a rare appearance on Fox for the Irish. Fox reserved its premiere time slot – “Big Noon Kickoff” – for Notre Dame and Wisconsin. The always entertaining Gus Johnson is on the play-by-play with Joel Klatt providing color commentary.
The Notre Dame Radio Network will have the radio broadcast as always on Sirus Satellite radio channel 129. IN South Bend, the game can be heard on 101.5 FM and 960 AM. Paul Burmeister is on the play-by-play with former Notre Dame great Ryan Harris providing the commentary.
Picture perfect weather conditions today. Hopefully, it leads to Jack Coan touchdown passes raining down on the Badgers secondary.
Key Injuries Updates
Notre Dame fans are still waiting to hear if LT Michael Carmody will give it a go today, but news broke Saturday AM that it is unlikely starting NT Kurt Hinish is unlikely to play. That would be a big loss for the Notre Dame rushing defense facing a team that wants to run, run, and run some more.
On the good news side, VYPER Jordan Botelho should be back on defense this week after playing only special teams last weekend.
Last Minute Story Lines
Jack Coan Revenge Game. Will Coan make his former team regret handing over the reigns to Graham Mertz last year? Mertz is still looking for his first touchdown pass of the year while Coan has tossed 8 in three games and should add to that total today IF the Notre Dame OL keeps him upright.
Will the Notre Dame OL step forward? Notre Dame’s OL looked better in the 2nd half of the Purdue game last week, but it is still the weak link on this team right now. It is relatively simple for Notre Dame today though. IF the offensive line gives Coan time to pass, Notre Dame will move the ball well and should win this game. That’s a huge IF for a team that currently ranks 126th in the country in sacks allowed. If Wisconsin gets to Coan four or more times today, it could be a long day at the office for Coan and the Irish offense.
Which Notre Dame defense shows up? Did the Notre Dame defense turn the corner against Purdue or are there still growing pains to go through today? We don’t know yet, but we will soon. If the defense plays the way they did against Purdue, Wisconsin should have trouble putting up a lot of points even if they move the ball on the ground with Hinish out.
Do the Notre Dame WR bounce back? It was a bad week for Kevin Austin and Braden Lenzy against the Boilermakers. Brian Kelly was asked about it this week and said Austin has been locked in this week. Notre Dame needs Austin to rebound in a big way and have his biggest game of the season today. IF Austin pulls down the passes he dropped a week ago, Wisconsin has no one who can handle him.
Latest Betting Lines
The line has been steady all week at -6.5 for Wisconsin which I still think is crazy, but I thought the line in the Florida State game was crazy too and the Irish didn’t cover. Wisconsin hasn’t done much to earn being a touchdown favorite so this line is really the result more of what Notre Dame hasn’t been so far this year.