The first ACC game for Duke Blue Devils will be in South Bend against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Notre Dame hasn’t had the season they have wanted so far, but they are getting better and almost beat an undefeated Ohio State team.
Notre Dame has had an up and down season, losing four games so far. Two of these losses were to quality opponents, but the other two losses were to teams that they should have beaten. The best thing about this game for Notre Dame is that it is at home.
They haven’t been consistent at home, but going to Cameron Indoor Stadium in their first ACC game would have been a challenge that most teams wouldn’t want to face. They have a tough test to face in their first ACC game, but they won’t back down. Mike Brey will have his guys playing hard just like they did against Ohio State.
This also could be a good thing for the Blue Devils; a tough test to start off the ACC season. They have had a couple easy games before they start their ACC schedule, but this should show how far the Blue Devils have come. There are only two other ranked teams as of now left on their schedule, but as Duke knows, don’t take any team too lightly. They will be tested this season in the ACC, and it should get them ready for the NCAA tournament.
This team has improved throughout the season. They have been getting better as a team, and a number of players have been improving. Andre Dawkins is getting better with every game since coming back from a season off, and Rasheed Sulaimon after a slow start is learning to play with this team. This team will only continue to improve as the season continues.
Against Notre Dame, the advantage is with the Blue Devils even though they have to go to South Bend. They are the better team, and have been challenged throughout the season. This is a very good defensive team this season, but they do struggle on the offensive side of the ball against the better teams. This should be a good game on Saturday, and Duke will be challenged.
At the end of the day, Notre Dame will be at home, and it will give them a lift. They also will be in their first ACC game, so they will be ready to make a statement as they come in to their new Conference. They will have a number of things going for them, but Duke is a much better team, and with some of their players playing better now Notre Dame won’t be able to hold them to less than seventy points will be a hard task to win. If Duke can get to seventy points or eighty they will come away with the win. Duke should come out of South Bend with the win, and start off well in the ACC.