Under the lights and under pressure - Notre Dame looks to rebound against the Wolverines

Road Trip. Notre Dame vs. Michigan. The Big House. Night game. ESPN. College GameDay. What more could you possibly ask for in a weekend? Oh, that’s right, a victory.

We’re a little over 24 hours away from kickoff of what will no doubt be a record setting night in the Big House. When Michigan faced UConn last September, 113,090 people attended the game, the most ever in Michigan Stadium. We’re about to put that number to shame tomorrow night, when the Irish come to town and take on the Wolverines during their first home night game ever.

The Notre Dame campus is already emptying out and students have hit the road to Ann Arbor.  Earlier this week, 2600 students entered into a ticket lottery, but only 150 lucky names were drawn, and winners had the chance to buy up to two coveted tickets. Now, if you do the math, that’s only 300 ND student tickets, but don’t let the numbers fool you, there will be well over that many in the Big House tomorrow night. This is not a game any of us want to miss.

One group of seniors is riding into Ann Arbor in style. They rented two RV’s for the weekend, 13 guys in one, and 10 in the other. One ticketless group of sophomores is driving down tonight in hopes of somehow finding tickets before the game tomorrow. If not, it’ll be worth it just to be there to witness what is sure to be a hectic day in Ann Arbor.

Another unique element of this game is the throwback uniforms, and they’ll look even better when they take the field under the lights.

As if the historic school rivalry and night game isn’t enough, College GameDay being there takes it over the top. And what’s GameDay without Lee Corso pulling out the headgear? After last week’s stunner in South Bend, you’d think there aren’t very many good reasons to pick the Irish, but we wouldn’t be surprised to see Corso pull out the Leprechaun hat.

Here are the ND game changing factors:

  • We have no intention of starting the season 0-2. We’ll do everything in our power to make sure that doesn’t happen.
  • Despite last weeks’ loss, our defense is better than Michigan’s. Last weekend wasn’t much of a test for the Wolverines against Western Michigan, and it will be harder for them to stop us.
  • Our offense showed glimpses of being explosive last week, and will continue to develop this week. Floyd and Wood had big plays, and expect them to bring that same energy on Saturday. Also, Tommy Rees is 4-0 as a starter, and last week he helped our offense come alive after the first half slump. Will he keep up that perfect record? We think so. 5-0 after Saturday night.
  • If we hold onto the ball, we should be able to take care of business.

This will be a close game and one you won’t want to miss. Tune in on ESPN at 8 p.m. ET.

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