5 ways Duke football can upset Notre Dame

duke football

Duke football has a very tough matchup to start this year’s college football season with Notre Dame. Notre Dame is ranked No. 10 in the college football rankings this year. I will explain five things Duke can do this Saturday to pull off an amazing upset.

Time of Possession

Notre Dame can’t score if they don’t have the ball, right? That is why the first thing Duke needs to do is control the time of possession. Notre Dame is projected to beat the Blue Devils by 20 points. Controlling the time of possession will keep the ball away from Notre Dame and tire out that defense.

Running the Ball

The first major way Duke can control time of possession is by running the ball. Running the ball is already a key factor in the game, but it is something Duke will have to win the time of possession battle. Another important thing Duke can’t do is give up on the run completely. Running the ball not only makes the defense gassed, but opens passing lanes and their receivers will face fewer double teams. Even though they can’t give up on the run, there is such a thing as running too much. If Duke does this, it will only lead to difficult third-down plays and more punts. They will need the duo of Mataeo Durant and Deon Jackson to get this done. Although I would like to see Durant get more carries, as he averaged just over a yard more per carry, than Jackson last year.


Notre Dame will catch on to the run eventually, even if Jackson and Durant are playing well. Duke will have a new quarterback this year with Chase Brice transferring from Clemson. Hopefully, some of that Dabo Swinney coaching stayed with Brice and he can bring it over to Duke. This will be Brice’s first opportunity to start in his collegiate career. He’ll have to make sure he doesn’t turnover the ball or the game can get out of hand quick. If they get behind, they may need to rely on Brice’s arm.


Even if Duke’s offense is clicking on all cylinders, they still must keep this a low scoring game. If they’re going to have any chance to beat Notre Dame, I would say Duke has to keep them under 35 points for the entire game. If Duke controls the time of possession, like I mentioned earlier, they won’t have to worry about Notre Dame scoring 35 points. Forcing turnovers, is always a big help. I would say, if Duke can force at least two, then they’ll be in pretty good shape.

Being Unpredictable

Duke may have to pull out one or two trick plays in this game, to catch Notre Dame off guard. Whether it’s fake punts or Chase Brice playing receiver for a play or two. The Blue Devils will have to find some way to create an element of surprise.