Navy Midshipmen @ Notre Dame Fighting Irish (-11) Free Pick: I normally don’t think much of Notre Dame’s chances to cover double digit spreads. They play heaps of close games, are greatly overrated, and spend way too much time throwing the ball, which, if you’ve noticed, is a good way not to cover spreads against lesser teams. Now, Navy is a run-centered team, they hardly ever throw the ball and use the ground and pound style to shorten the game and get tough yards. That’s good for covering double digit spreads as well.
However, I’m taking Notre Dame. They are the better team, and have a passing attack unlike anything Navy has had to go against this season. But the main reason I’m taking the Irish here is that Navy’s starting quarterback, Ricky Dobbs, though listed as probable for Saturday’s contest against the Irish, will not be 100%. In Navy’s last game, Dobbs went down early and couldn’t finish the game, giving way to Dayne Crist (who played well) in their loss to Temple. Without Dobbs at 100%, the chances of Navy pulling the upset definitely dwindle.
Throughout their 6 wins so far this season, only against Washington State and Nevada did the Irish win by double digits. That’s amazing, I know, especially when you consider their prolific offense and elite talent, but they haven’t been able to stop many people. I think their defense steps up against Navy, and their offense pours it on.