With a third-consecutive 10-win season in the books, the Notre Dame football team will look for win No. 11 in the Camping World Bowl against Iowa State on Saturday, Dec. 28 (Noon ET, ABC).
The Fighting Irish are headed to a bowl game for the ninth time in 10 seasons under Dick Corbett Head Football Coach Brian Kelly, with this year’s postseason trip marking the 36th postseason appearance for the program.
Notre Dame capped a 10-2 regular season with a 45-24 victory at Stanford on Nov. 30. The Irish finished the season ranked among the top-15 nationally in both scoring offense (37.1 points per game) and scoring defense (18.7 points allowed per game), while registering three wins against teams in the final College Football Playoff rankings (USC, Virginia and Navy).
Notre Dame and Iowa State have never met in football. The Cyclones will become the 148th different opponent in school history, with the Irish owning a 122-22-3 (.840) record against first-time opponents. Earlier in 2019, Notre Dame earned victories over debut opponents New Mexico and Bowling Green.
Kelly’s team has won 32 of the last 38 games played and the 10-plus wins in each of the last three seasons is a program first since 1991-93. The Irish completed a second-consecutive undefeated season at home and own the third-longest winning streak in Notre Dame Stadium history. The 296-108 point differential at home this season was the largest by a Notre Dame team since 1932.
The Notre Dame offense is led by QB Ian Book, who is the first signal caller in school history to eclipse 2,500 passing yards, 500 rushing yards and 30 TD passes in the season. He now ranks fourth in school history with 56 career TD passes. WR Chase Claypool is just the fourth Notre Dame receiver since 1996 to eclipse 400 receiving yards in three-straight seasons, while TEs Cole Kmet and Tommy Tremble had given Notre Dame a pair of tight ends with at least four TD receptions in the same season for the first time in school history.
A trio of captains lead the Irish defense in DL Khalid Kareem, S Jalen Elliott and S Alohi Gilman. The defense has been particularly stout early in games, surrendering just 3.09 points per game in the first quarter. Notre Dame has held 24 of its last 25 opponents to 30 points or less. Kareem leads the team with 10 tackles for loss, while adding nine QB hurries, three forced fumbles and a fumble recovery for a TD against Stanford. Gilman owns 66 tackles, trailing only the team’s three starting linebackers, while adding a sack, an interception and two forced fumbles. Elliott has intercepted a pair of passes and broken-up two more.
The Camping World Bowl marks the school’s 36th bowl game after the University declined to participate in postseason football from 1925-68. Notre Dame has routinely set bowl game attendance records, including in the visit to the Champs Sports Bowl. The Irish set records at the Sugar Bowl (85,161 in 1973 vs. Alabama), the Champs Sports Bowl (68,305 in 2011 vs. Florida State, tops among games played at Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium), the Sun Bowl (54,021 in 2010 vs. Miami), the Hawaii Bowl (43,487 in 2008 vs. Hawaii), the Insight Bowl (45,971 in 2004 vs. Oregon State, tops among games at Chase Field) and the Independence Bowl (50,459 in 1997 vs. LSU).