With the NCAA Football season getting underway, many fans are asking, "Will the 2014 addition of Notre Dame be helpful or harmful to the Atlantic Coast Conference this season?" The hope in the ACC is that this addition will help the conference across the board.
When October 18th comes around, the Fighting Irish will play the reigning National Champions Florida State at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, Florida. That could become an instant classic. Thus, adding Notre Dame to the schedule makes the task for FSU to repeat as champions much more interesting.
But making hypothetical projections are normally a futile exercise and in some cases cannot be ignored. In reality, most fans have no idea whether the addition of Notre Dame will be good or bad for the Atlantic Coast Conference. The game against FSU is just one example, but a very important one, with the Seminoles having a very difficult schedule compared to a year ago. This season the Seminoles have a neutral site game with Oklahoma State and also have to play rival Florida Gators who are expected to be drastically improved this season. Those games, then adding Notre Dame into the schedule gives FSU the hardest non-conference title among the other teams who are anticipated to be in the NCAA FB Preseason top 5. Thus FSU is the only team who has to play two power-five opponents and then Notre Dame. While Alabama, Oregon, Oklahoma and Auburn have only one power-five opponent each on their schedule and neither have Notre Dame on their 2014 schedule.
The Irish of Notre Dame are expected to be in the top 25 teams for the preseason and that indicates they have the potential of pulling off some upsets this season.
Most say the Irish will be a big plus for the Atlantic Coast Conference and their affiliation with the ACC is not a one-sided affair. They do expand their schedule while finding a good home for their other NCAA sports programs. Plus, they gain a whole host of postseason opportunities that as an independent did not exist for the university. It goes without saying that the ACC will also have perks from this association. One thing stands out and that is the Irish are a rapid boost in the conference schedule strength. Thus, the ACC teams will bet the Irish on their schedule at least once every three years and when they do host Notre Dame, a stadium sellout is almost a certainty and more than likely the exposure of hosting a prime time game and a nationally televised event.
Thus, sports fans the Notre Dame addition to the ACC will be a plus for those that bet on college sports whether it be at here at SBG sportsbook or with a localized bookie. But be cautious with the odds of FSU being favored by 24 points for their 2014 matchup.