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ESPN: Notre Dame Is The Most Dangerous One-Loss Team In The Country

The Irish are making some noise in the rankings.

As the College Football Playoff rankings begin to take shape, there are a number of one-loss teams out there that are still in playoff contention.

One of those squads is Notre Dame, fresh off a 49-14 thumping of rival USC last weekend. Coming off a 4-8 season and mostly written off after a Week 2 loss to Georgia, Notre Dame has ripped off five straight wins and is looking like a team capable of reaching the CFP.

Ohio State, Oklahoma and Clemson all have one-loss resumes, and all entered the season with higher expectations. However, ESPN's Mel Kiper and Todd McShay both pegged the Irish as the most dangerous one-loss team.

Here are some of the reasons why:

Kiper: Look, I hope I don't jinx my favorite college football team by doing this -- I've been a Notre Dame fan all of my life -- but I have to go with the Fighting Irish here. They're playing with supreme confidence right now coming off a beatdown of USC. This is a completely different team since it lost to Georgia by a point in South Bend in the second week of the season.

McShay: Kiper going with Notre Dame? Why am I not shocked. Unfortunately, I agree with him, especially with the Irish coming off that 49-14 win on Saturday. Notre Dame has only that loss to Georgia on the season as a blemish on its résumé, and I think Georgia is the nation's second-best team behind Alabama. Head coach Brian Kelly met personally with every returning player after last season, and he seems to have changed the culture there.

Okay, so Kiper is a little biased here. Still, there is a lot to like about ND, which boasts a revamped defense, a budding Heisman candidate in running back Josh Adams, and quality wins over USC and Michigan State.

Still, Notre Dame finishes with NC State, Wake Forest, Miami (Fla.), Navy and Stanford, so running the table will not be an easy task.

[ ESPN ]