Back Hot Read: Duke Stuns Notre Dame

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Hot Read: Duke Stuns Notre Dame

By BJ Bennett
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The Blue Devils win 38-35 in South Bend.

1. What a tremendous victory for David Cutcliffe and the Duke program. To beat Notre Dame, in South Bend, is an achievement for the record books for the Blue Devils and gives Duke very meaningful momentum moving forward. In the Blue Devils' two previous games at the Fighting Irish, 1966 and 2007, Duke lost by a combined score of 92-7. This is a season-defining triumph for the Blue Devils and a win that will be remembered for a long time. After a bit of a slow start, Duke moves back to .500 in resounding fashion.

2. Credit the Blue Devils for their resiliency and mental toughness. On the road, Duke got down to a heavily-favored foe 14-0; the Blue Devils promptly responded by scoring 21 unanswered points. When Notre Dame took the lead late in the fourth quarter, Duke answered with a 64-yard touchdown pass, an interception and a ten-play drive that ended with the game-winning field goal. The Blue Devils showed a lot of poise on the big stage.

3. The offensive production was remarkable. Duke compiled 500 total yards and did so with great balance. Walk-on freshman quarterback Daniel Jones threw for 290 yards and two touchdowns, running back Jela Duncan ran 21 times for 121 yards and score and receiver Anthony Nash caught six passes for 123 yards and both of Jones' touchdowns. Credit Jones for setting an efficient, effective tone under center, along with the offensive line. The Blue Devils reached double figures in scoring in three of the four quarters.

4. Defensively, Duke was was quite opportunistic. The Blue Devils forced three critical turnovers, two of which led to scores. Duke also proved true late, preventing the Fighting Irish from getting into field goal range on their final possession.

5. Notre Dame went 5-1 against the ACC in 2015, losing only at Clemson by two points. After their loss to Duke, the Fighting Irish must still play Syracuse, at NC State, Miami and Virginia Tech this fall.

BJ Bennett - B.J. Bennett is's founder and publisher. He is the co-host of "Three & Out" with Kevin Thomas and Ben Troupe on the "Southern Pigskin Radio Network". Email: / Twitter: @BJBennettSports