After a rocky December start, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish went on a six-game winning streak which included four conference wins in a row. That all came to a screeching halt in Blacksburg as the Irish collapsed in the final minutes of a game that they led the entire time. Now after a scare against Howard, the Irish are back on their ACC schedule with a road trip south to take on the Louisville Cardinals.
Louisville has been struggling during its January ACC schedule. The Cardinals lost three ACC games in a row (Florida State, Pitt, and N.C. State) before finally getting a win over Boston College. This isn’t a very explosive Louisville team. Guard Noah Locke is the team’s leading scorer with an average of just over 10 points per game. They do go fairly deep on the bench — but even with the wealth being spread around — this just isn’t a team that is lights out shooting the ball.
Notre Dame’s Dane Goodwin continues to be the leading scorer with over 15 points per game and has been the steadiest Irish player in a year of hot and cold streaks. Paul Atkinson has been Notre Dame’s only real threat inside the paint. It becomes really bad news for the Irish when Atkinson gets into foul trouble, and the matchups become unfavorable.
The Irish have a huge stretch of games in front of them with this game, Duke, N.C. State, and Virginia over the course of the next eight days. For the Irish to help solidify its place in the ACC and with their NCAA Tournament hopes, nothing less than a split will be needed — but more would be better (obviously).
According to DraftKings Sportsbook, Notre Dame is a 2.5 point underdog against Louisville with an over/under of 130.
WHEN, WHERE, AND HOW TO WATCH
When: Saturday, January 22 @ 4:00 PM EST
Where: KFC Yum! Center, Louisville, Kentucky
How to Watch: ESPN
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