No. 18 Irish look to proceed ACC dominance in opposition to Eagles

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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — No. 18 Notre Dame has celebrated its soccer partnership with the ACC routinely over the past 5 seasons.

The truth is, it appears to occur each time the Preventing Irish put a league foe on the schedule.

Notre Dame has gained 27 straight regular-season video games in opposition to the ACC, together with three this season over ranked ACC foes North Carolina, Syracuse and Clemson.

On Saturday, the Preventing Irish can lengthen that streak once they host Boston Faculty, which is coming in off of snapping a streak of its personal — lastly beating a ranked opponent after 25 tries.

It hasn’t been the season Boston Faculty coach Jeff Hafley or the Eagles (3-7) envisioned, however final week’s 21-20 upset over No. 17 North Carolina State offered a glimmer of hope.

“We haven’t gained since 2008,” Boston Faculty coach Jeff Hafley mentioned, referring to an eight-game dropping streak within the sequence. “We’ve received to do our half and ensure it turns into extra of a rivalry by successful a few of these video games.”

If Boston Faculty beats a ranked workforce again to again, it will give this system a fair larger enhance. It gained’t be simple — contemplating the Irish (7-3) dealt No. 9 Clemson and No. 13 North Carolina their solely losses of the season and the victory over Syracuse despatched the Orange’s season right into a tailspin.

And the Eagles have the worst dashing offense within the FBS (61.4 yards per recreation).

BC quarterback Phil Jurkovec has missed the final two video games with an injured proper knee and it’s unclear if he’ll play Saturday in opposition to the varsity the place he performed two seasons. After he left, Jurkovec informed The Boston Globe that former Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly “lied” to his household earlier than leaving for LSU final yr.

Freshman Emmett Morehead stepped within the final two video games; he’s thrown for 885 yards with eight TDs and three interceptions this season.

“I’m certain it’s emotional,” he mentioned of Jurkovec. “Clearly, it’s the place he began his profession. He’s had his harm to cope with the final couple weeks. I do know the man desires to play.”

Notre Dame, which performs No. 7 Southern California on Nov. 26, guarantees to be prepared for both quarterback.

“There’s some similarities between Phil Jurkovec and Morehead,” Irish coach Marcus Freeman mentioned. “I don’t assume defensively you’ll change relying on who’s going to be at quarterback, however Moorhead does a very good job of extending performs together with his legs.”

LASTING BONDS

Jurkovec isn’t the one Boston Faculty participant with Notre Dame ties. Tight finish George Takacs performed for the Irish from 2018-21 and has 24 receptions for 248 yards and one TD this yr.

“I performed there for 4 years,” Takacs mentioned. “I’ve nice relations with lots of guys, so I’m excited to return and compete.”

Eagles offensive coordinator John McNulty spent two seasons on Notre Dame’s teaching workers and nonetheless talks steadily with Irish offensive coordinator Tommy Rees.

“He’s clearly any individual I belief as a lot as anyone on this career,” Rees mentioned. “He’s most likely the man I’m closest to.”

BLOSSOMING FLOWERS

Boston Faculty receiver Zay Flowers had seven receptions for 130 yards and two TDs final weekend, changing into the varsity’s profession chief with 2,900 yards. With 10 TD catches this yr, 4 of them from 50 yards or extra, Freeman understands what sort of impediment Flowers is.

“He’s a deep menace that runs by defenders,” Freeman mentioned. “He’s fast. The pace that he brings to Boston Faculty’s offense goes to be an enormous problem for us to match up with.”

PROTECTION PROBLEM

Morehead’s largest problem this weekend is perhaps staying upright lengthy sufficient to search out Flowers. Boston Faculty permits 3.9 sacks per recreation, the sixth-worst common within the FBS, and has allowed 5 in every of the previous two video games. Even worse: Notre Dame averages 2.9 sacks per recreation and ranks within the prime 20 nationally.

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AP faculty soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://twitter.com/ap_top25. Join the AP’s faculty soccer e-newsletter: https://tinyurl.com/mrxhe6f2.



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