Now that Notre Dame has 3 losses, the Irish are out of the Final Four mix of playoff bowls and all but eliminated from playing in any of the New Year’s Six games.

Such circumstances always come as a surprise at Notre Dame, but one of the reasons why Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick is so highly regarded is because of the deal he made three years ago foreseeing speed bumps which would knock the Irish off course.

Swarbrick knows that any Notre  Dame team with 10 or more wins would be all but a lock for a New Year’s Six bowl bid. But he took no chances, getting the Orange Bowl to agree to a clause which would take a Notre Dame team higher ranked than an SEC or Big Ten team for at least 2 years in a 12 year contract. That team would play a team from the ACC.

Swarbrick wanted more protection for the times when the Irish really stumbled, as they have done this season, in losing three of their first four games. The rest of this article is available to subscribers only – to become a subscriber click here.