Notre Dame Football: Plenty Left To Play For In 2022

With a few losses tallied before even hitting the month of November,

 all of Notre Dame’s preseason dreams and goals of a playoff run or at a minimum an appearance in a high-quality New Year’s Six bowl game are dead.

 This is why college football has the most exciting regular season in all of the sports. It’s not hyperbole,

every game matters. And the reality is, even if Notre Dame managed to beat highly ranked Syracuse,

Clemson, and USC to end the year, while it would matter perceptually no doubt, practically speaking, their fate is already sealed.

As frustrating as this reality is for Notre Dame fans to accept, it must be even harder for those within

the program itself. But just because the biggest of goals are now out of reach does not mean there’s nothing left to play for. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.

1. Pride Notre Dame has been a top-ten team for the last handful of years fairly regularly

 and nobody is enjoying seeing this accolade slip out of reach this year.

A loss to Ohio State, is understandable, but Marshall and Stanford at home?

2. Ruin Other Team's Years I admit this is not the most enviable place to be. Everyone in the Notre Dame fan ranks

 would much prefer matchups between the highly rated Irish and anyone else, but that isn’t reality.

3. Protect Marcus Freeman There is no doubt Marcus Freeman entered this year flying high. His open and humble personality,

a stark and quite divergent change from his predecessor’s, had the Irish nation wrapped up in a Freeman frenzy, myself included.

4. Recruiting Protection Notre Dame must play well the rest of the way to protect against this becoming more of a concern than it already is.

5. Development While this year’s team will not be winning any titles or big bowl games, some in the future may be able to

. And many of the players that are on this squad could and will likely be a part of those teams.

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