Posted November 10, 2013

Notre Dame’s BCS hopes dashed after 28-21 loss to Pittsburgh

Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Pitt Panthers
A Pitt comeback in the second half helped nix any chance of Notre Dame getting into a BCS bowl. (Keith Srakocic/AP)

A Pitt comeback in the second half helped nix any chance of Notre Dame getting into a BCS bowl. (Keith Srakocic/AP)

Notre Dame’s troubles with Pittsburgh are well-documented, even when the Fighting Irish are on a roll. Last November, the Panthers nearly squashed the Irish’s unbeaten regular season in a triple-overtime thriller, but an Everett Golson touchdown run saved Notre Dame from sudden disappointment. That loss would have crushed the Irish’s shot at an eventual berth in the BCS title game.

This time around, the Panthers exacted their revenge. Pitt’s defense forced three turnovers, including two picks from much-maligned quarterback Tommy Rees, to snag a 28-21 win. The Panthers rallied from a 21-14 deficit late in the third quarter, as quarterback Tom Savage completed 22-of-35 passes for 243 yards with two scores.

With Saturday’s loss, whatever hopes the Irish (7-3) had of crashing the BCS are now gone. Notre Dame opened this season with two losses (at Michigan and vs. Oklahoma) in its first five games, and the program appeared to be slipping after its 12-1 campaign in 2012. But coach Brian Kelly’s roster had seemingly turned things around since. They’d won four straight heading into the weekend, including victories over No. 22 Arizona State and fast-improving USC.

Still, a November loss to an unranked foe nixes the Irish’s BCS hopes. While Notre Dame must come to grips with life outside the BCS, Pitt (5-4, 2-3 ACC) needs only one more win become bowl eligible. This season, it’s Kelly’s program that must find a way to regroup.

38 comments
Sulkaman
Sulkaman

They could have made a BCS game if...they didn't suck. All that recruiting promise and to still suck. Shameful.

MikeNPS
MikeNPS

Get serious.  This Notre Dame team never earned BCS consideration.

sysint
sysint

That anyone still votes for Notre Dame in the top 25 is disgusting nepotism. Get off it. They stink and never deserved any mention of BCS anything.

Listening
Listening

Not good for ND.  Maybe now they can get off their HIGH HORSE and join a conference (I mean football included).  Still...  after losing to Pitt I can not image who wants to see ND get one of those very few BCS bowl bids.  Probably as many people that want NIU to get one.

OK
OK

Do you have any idea how sweet it truly is to see Notre Dame crush its own dreams on national television?

Slightly better than BYU housing Texas and Mack Brown and his Band of Unrenown.

Notre Dame public humiliation occurs every season on NBC Sports.

ElvisHitler
ElvisHitler

Brian Kelly should still be in prison.

ngk11
ngk11

Noter lame could lose 5 games and still have a chance in this BS bowl system

James C
James C

UGLY BCS Bowl Projections:


Here are my current BCS Bowl Projections:


Here are the current automatic bids for the BCS based on conference standings including head to head meetings: 

Central Florida (AAC), Florida St (ACC), Ohio St (Big Ten), Texas (Big 12), Alabama (SEC), Stanford (Pac 12), and Fresno State (MWC top 12 ahead of AAC champion).

The following teams are eligible as at-large contenders right now: 

Oregon, Baylor, Clemson, Missouri, South Carolina, Auburn, Oklahoma St, Texas A&M, and Michigan St (expect LSU, Oklahoma, and Miami to drop out of the top 14 after losses yesterday).  


Title Game: Alabama vs Florida St (top 2 BCS Standings)

Rose Bowl: Stanford vs Ohio State (Big 10 vs Pac 12 unless one is selected to the Title Game)

Sugar Bowl:  Auburn (or it could be Missouri or Texas A&M) vs UCF

(The Sugar Bowl get it's choice of replacement for losing Alabama. They likely go with a fellow SEC team, likely Auburn, but also possibly the winner of Missouri vs Texas A&M, an Auburn loss to Georgia and Alabama would really complicate things). (UCF likely gets stuck in this spot as an automatic qualifier and the second to last selection. The Sugar should get a choice between Fresno St and UCF and likely would take UCF because its is a closer geographic fit). 

Orange Bowl: Clemson vs Oregon

(The Orange Bowl gets a replacement pick for losing Florida St), this is most likely Clemson, who should be 11-1 unless they lose to S. Carolina). (Oregon is by far the most attractive of the teams that would be eligible by this point in the selection process, the other options would be, Baylor, UCF, Fresno St, and Michigan St, Oklahoma St.)

Fiesta Bowl: Texas vs Fresno St  (They would get what is left, and that is likely Fresno St).



As I said, all of this assumes that conference's stay they way they are. The biggest change I expect is Baylor to beat Texas and win the Big 12. If this happens, Baylor hosts the Fiesta Bowl. 


There are a lot of people likely hoping and praying that UCF hits the skids allowing Louisville into the AAC title picture and that someone knocks off Fresno St. 




JeffBockert
JeffBockert

This is funny. We all watched Pitt beat ND last year too. The ghost PI call ensured they would make their money off the ND fans. Oh, and we watched them lose to Stanford at home. Same thing, ghost whistle blew when the Stanford running back wasn't down and scored a TD but, didn't count because the ref blew the whistle. ND is so bad this year the refs couldn't bail them out again. 

Cool
Cool

Only in the world of the BCS and Associated Press polls do the Fighting Irish even have a slim hope of being a BCS contender with two losses...   No other 2 loss team even thought it was a slight possibility, but over the years we have all come to learn that Notre Dame will always get a nod above a better team.  So happy to see them with their 3rd loss.

NoQNoSuperBowl
NoQNoSuperBowl

Anything that goes wrong for Brian Kelly is good for the world.

WilyCoyoteSuperGenius
WilyCoyoteSuperGenius

Notre Dame had no business being in the title game last year. Thank God we won't have to watch them get embarrassed in a BCS game this season. Now if we can just eliminate that automatic bid for an "American Athletic Conference" team.

Ryan13
Ryan13

Alas Notre Dame's hopes are gone gone gone... Nothing better than a team that wont rally around its senior QB, but if I was them I wouldn't either. Reese lost the game, NOT the Fighting Irish. Poor pass decision making will destroy any team, no matter how bad they are. Thank God I sold my season tickets before the first snap!

rick h2
rick h2

you never know how many loses it may take to keep THEM out of the bcs. at least 2 more than anyone else.

Mulligan
Mulligan

Still can't believe Kelly left Cincy in the middle of the night just days before a major bowl game to be the ND coach. NCAA football has no class in general to let crap like that happen.

JBub
JBub

You Notre Dame fans should be thanking Pitt.  The Panthers have saved your media darlings from another major bowl embarrassment.

metalhead65
metalhead65

I love it! how does downtown detroit in the dead of winter sound dame fans? they will probably reject anything less than a bcs game because of their arrogance.

Oldtimeduffer
Oldtimeduffer

Couldn't happen to a nicer program.  George Kaplan where are you??

rocknitout
rocknitout

@Listening They pretty much have joined the ACC. They have a commitment of playing 5 ACC games per year.

James C
James C

@Listening I would rather see NIU get one. The one thing a team con control is beating everyone they play. If NIU were to get a BCS bid they would have done that. 

James C
James C

@ngk11 No they can't. The worst they could be, by rule is 9-3 and get in. A team must be top 14 in the final BCS standings and have a minimum 9 wins to be in. 


The question is how far does ND drop this season. It is very possible that you see a battle of potentially top 25 teams (N. Illinois and ND) in the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl in Detroit). 

Cool
Cool

@James C Nebraska could (they won't, but I can dream) beat Mich St and then go on to win against Ohio State in the Big Ten title game, and I will argue that the AP and BCS polls would not put them in the top 14...   When you have polls keep a 3 loss team in the top 20 because of the conference they play, you are not going to see those same voters elevate Nebraska to top 15 status because they will argue that Mich State and Ohio St are all apart of a weak conference.   But still, by rule, Nebraska get's an automatic BCS bowl game.

OK
OK

@James C  

Texas in the Fiesta Bowl? Get a grip. Pick BYU instead.

Send Mack Brown and His Band of Unrenown to the Polar Weedeater Bowl or the Motor City Bowl.

James C
James C

@Cool Not true. They did not say BCS Title Game contender, just BCS contender. Considering there are 5 BCS games, that means 10 teams. With a limit of two team per conference in the BCS games. 


Had ND won out, including a win at Stanford, they would have been very much in the mix. 


Consider that Auburn (likely loss to Alabama), Missouri (likely loss in SEC title game), South Carolina (already 2 losses), are all likely to be in the discussion for the SEC's replacement pick, a team with 2 losses is in the mix for a BCS bid (not title game). 





James C
James C

@WilyCoyoteSuperGenius I will disagree about ND last year. They did earn their spot in the Title Game last year. This year is not last year and last year ND deserved to be in the BCS Title Game. I don't think any AAC team deserves to be in a BCS Bowl game though, unless they beat out the MWC champion for that spot.  

Listening
Listening

@WilyCoyoteSuperGenius  

You have the best point of the day.   The American Athletic Conference having an automatic BCS bid is hilarious.  Thank God they will only receive one because the playoffs coming next year will cure all this BS.  I do wish it was at least eight teams instead of just the four.  Maybe I'll get my wish a few years down the line.

JeffBockert
JeffBockert

@Oldtimeduffer  Yeah, where is georgie boy. He tried so hard to apply his logic last year. He pulled from any source he could find to claim his ND team was actually good. He wouldn't listen when everyone told him that, without the refs help, his team actually lost to Stanford and Pitt. When they were outplayed by Pitt, anyone with any common sense knew what would happen to them when they played a top 10 team. I don't think georgie had played a sport in his life and was really hoping that the articles he based his opinions on were legit. 

MikeNPS
MikeNPS

@James C @ngk11 

No, James, the question is why were the Irish so grossly overrated last year.  Their getting stomped in the national championship game was no fluke.


Sulkaman
Sulkaman

@James C @ngk11 Wow, James.  You are a perceptive one. He is clearly being facetious. Lighten up dude.

James C
James C

@OK @James C You are aware that right now Texas is the Big 12 leader right? They are currently 6-0 in Big 12 play, 1/2 game ahead of Baylor atop the conference. 


I also state clearly these are the current projections, which means based on what has happened so far. 


Also, it would be hard for them to go to the Motor City Bowl since it hasn't been held in several years. 


No, I don't think Texas wins the Big 12, I think Baylor is the best team in the Big 12 and will end up in the Fiesta Bowl when all is said and done. 

Listening
Listening

@OK @James C  

Hahahahaha  Polar?????  Polar??? it's the POULAN Weedeater Bowl.  Maybe your team should attend. Hahahahahah

Cool
Cool

@James C @Cool ND doesn't have to play a conference championship game... ND plays by their own rules and knows that it has the faithful support of sports writers afraid of hacking Jesus off... and the BCS and it's flawed scoring system... that was my point.

i_enjoy_tacos
i_enjoy_tacos

@MikeNPS  They were ranked where they were because they were the only undefeated team eligible for the championship game.  How does that make them overrated?  It sounds like that were rated perfectly.

OK
OK

@James C

"Also, it would be hard for them to go to the Motor City Bowl since it hasn't been held in several years."

That's why the 2013 Longhorns should be sent to the Motor City Bowl. The team, its coach, and their personal media empire are a joke and do not deserve to play in a bowl game.

The Big 12 is a weak conference with few credible programs - and Texas ain't one of 'em.