Yesterday, Justify captured the Belmont Stakes to become the 13th Triple Crown winner in American horse racing history. Justify joins American Pharoah (2015) as the most recent Triple Crown winners.
On the surface, there may not be much connection between horse racing and college football, but one program seems to always have a big season a few months after a horse wins the Triple Crown.
Notre Dame has a major tradition of performing well in Triple Crown years. That's good news for Irish fans.
This stat, unearthed by ND alum and longtime Clemson football SID Tim Bourret, shows the tie between the Irish and the best racehorses America has to offer.
In 2015, Notre Dame went 10-2 in the regular season and earned a trip to the Fiesta Bowl. That was after American Pharaoh snapped a 27-year Triple Crown drought.
Can they duplicate or even top that feat this year? The schedule is tough, with an opening game against Michigan, trips to USC and Virginia Tech and other home games against Florida State and Stanford.
But the Irish should be particularly strong defensively, and if the offense takes a step forward under quarterback Brandon Wimbush, the ingredients for another 10-win season are there.
Plus, it seems like Notre Dame has history on its side.