The Fighting Irish finished their regular season on a high note Saturday beating Pac-12 opponent Stanford on the road. Notre Dame fell behind after a first-quarter field goal and a touchdown run by Tiger Bachmeier extended the Cardinal's lead to 13-7. Audric Estime was a workhorse for the Irish on Saturday rushing for 248 yards and four touchdowns. Notre Dame was able to find success on the ground throughout this contest rushing for 381 yards as a team. At halftime, Stanford trailed 28-16.
Three straight unanswered scores in the third quarter blew this game wide open as Estime found the endzone twice in the quarter. Senior Quarterback Sam Hartman only completed 8 passes on the day but two of them went for scores. Hartman found Jaden Greathouse in the second quarter for a 15-yard score. In the second half, Hartman again found the endzone through the air connecting with Jordan Faison for a 45-yard touchdown.
The Notre Dame defense was a strong point the entire season. On Saturday the Irish defense once again stepped up, only allowing one Stanford score in the second half. The Cardinals amassed over 300 yards of total offense but were unable to keep up with Notre Dame’s high-powered offense.
The Irish finished their regular season at 9-3 and will await their bowl bid. Coach Marcus Freeman and the team responded well after the loss to Clemson, defeating their next two opponents by over 30 points. Although many Notre Dame fans had expectations of making the playoffs early in the year, this 2023 team showed resilience after multiple frustrating losses. It will be interesting to see who the Fighting Irish get matched up with during bowl season.