Football Notre Dame 2022: is 10-2 acceptable?

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If you’re a Notre Dame fan and could sign up to accept the Irish finishing the regular season 10-2, would you take it now?

Or do you think the expectation for this team should be College Football Playoff or Bust?

As we’re in the final days of July and the light at the end of the off-season tunnel grows brighter every day, it’s time to start really focusing on what the 2022 season will ultimately bring to Notre Dame. A trip to Ohio State to begin with is about as tough as you can ask for, but then September offers incredibly winnable games against Marshall, Cal and North Carolina.

BYU presents a challenge to Las Vegas to start October, but again the month sees home games against Stanford and UNLV that should be won while a trip to Syracuse on Halloween weekend is not really intimidating.

Clemson comes to Notre Dame Stadium to open November’s biggest home game of the year before contests against Navy and Boston College close the gap to the USC rivalry game in late November.

With that schedule in mind, do you sign up for 10-2? I’m asking for this record specifically because of where College Football News’ Pete Fiutak projects Notre Dame will play this postseason as he released his preseason bowl projections.

NEXT: Where Fiutak is sending Notre Dame this bowl season

Fiutak posted his preseason bowl projections on College Football News this week and has Notre Dame playing a team they occasionally meet now with their ACC login.

A team they’ve only played three times before.

Fiutak’s pre-season bowl screening for Notre Dame:

Orange Bowl vs. North Carolina State
December 30, 2022

Fiutak is calling on the Irish to go to Miami and take part in a North Carolina State program they’ve only met three times before, all of which have come since the 2003 New Year’s Gator Bowl.

Oddly enough, if Fiutak calls his shot correctly on this one, the Irish and Wolfpack would have met more times in Florida State than they did in Indiana or North Carolina.

NEXT: Is the Orange Bowl Good Enough for Freeman’s Freshman Year?

So I will ask again and share my answer as well. Is an Orange Bowl appearance in Marcus Freeman’s first season acceptable for this 2022 Notre Dame team?

Of course, I can’t give you a simple yes or no, but I’m kind of curious how the 10-2 turns out, because I’m guessing an 11-1 record against Notre Dame’s schedule this fall would be good enough for a college football playoff spot.

What I’m basically asking is who are the two losses against? Are they Ohio State and Clemson? Ohio State and USC? State of Ohio and others? Or maybe after a shocking upset at Ohio State, the Irish still manage two losses on the year?

10-2 with a loss to Ohio State and Clemson would be a lot like Notre Dame, because not being able to beat the Elites was Brian Kelly’s story.

10-2 with a loss at Ohio State to start the year ahead of 10 straight wins and a loss at USC to close the regular season would be a disappointment no matter how good the Trojans are.

10-2 with a loss at Ohio State and against anyone other than the big three would also be a disappointment.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that a 10-2 season under Marcus Freeman would be a really good year for Notre Dame and it would be a huge building block for a program that sees its recruiting classes develop in terms of talent in the years to come. However, apparently either way you shape it, 10-2 will be a bit disappointing even though there are plenty of reasons to think it’s a pretty good first season.

Man, I’m glad my day job doesn’t come with so much pressure.

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