Notre Dame has a better football team than NC State. If you want to deny that, fine; if you want to just rage against losing tonight, that’s fine, you can do that and you should do that. It’s been a hell of a run for NC State. The Irish doused it with a bucket full of reality on Saturday afternoon.
State scored first, thanks to a blocked punt, to put the Irish behind 7-0. Notre Dame quickly responded with a game-tying touchdown, one that took less than 30 seconds. State answered in the form of a brilliant touchdown catch by Kelvin Harmon, but this, it turns out, was mere illusion—the Irish erased that deficit, and they would never trail again.
This game was a huge struggle for State’s offense, which is a credit to Notre Dame and also a lamentation for the absence of Nyheim Hines, who was injured early on. Reggie Gallaspy had his moments but it just is not the same without Hines.
Notre Dame did a nice job of containing State’s perimeter game; Jaylen Samuels was frustrated most of the day, and while Kelvin Harmon made some heroic catches, he can only do so much by himself.
Notre Dame turned State upside down, forced the Wolfpack to rely entirely on the pass, and Notre Dame also guessed that Eli Drinkwitz could not properly adjust to this set of circumstances. Notre Dame was right, and State, and Drinkwitz, got buried tonight. So it goes.