After weeks of debating the critics and supporters still can not come to a conclusion on Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish were victorious on Saturday rallying late to defeat BYU. To supporters the win was validation that Notre Dame is deserving of a high ranking in the college football polls. To critics of the program it was proof that Notre Dame is not a top team yet.
The Irish defeated BYU in much the same manner that the defeated Michigan, Purdue and Stanford. While Notre Dame trailed BYU for much of the game they found a way to climb back into the lead and win. The win keeps the Irish as one of only a handful of teams who have not lost yet. It also keeps alive hopes that Notre Dame could somehow finish the season undefeated and play in the National Title game.
Those believing in Notre Dame saw a win on Saturday. A championship caliber defense kept BYU out of the end-zone. Winning on Saturday is all the team needed to do in essence. While other top ranked teams had lost games earlier this season the Irish have kept their record spotless. After all winning ugly beats losing.
Critics saw a different game on Saturday. They saw a unranked BYU team lead Notre Dame for three quarters before succumbing to a good but not great defense. Critics saw an offense that still lacks a true identity which has to rely on the play of two quarterbacks because neither has the ability to lead a team.
Your take on the game probably was influenced by your opinion of Notre Dame before the game. It still was not proven wether Notre Dame is a true championship contender. Perhaps Notre Dame has just been able to defeat other teams who are not as good as originally thought.
What has been forgotten is that it does not matter right now. The one thing everyone seems to agree on is that Notre Dame must win every game this season if they want to play for a National Championship. Up next is the Oklahoma Sooners in Norman, Ok. If Notre Dame wins that game they will change the minds of some critics but not all, after all they will then point to a game against USC.
Again, it does not matter. Notre Dame just needs to win. If they do that everything else will take care of itself.