What a long strange trip it has been this season for the Fighting Irish as they came away even at 6-6 for the 2008 campaign. Other than who will be Notre Dame's head coach next season, the question now is where will the Irish be playing this postseason?
Sun Bowl (Dec. 31st)
This game will be signed, sealed, and delivered, if Louisville beats Rutgers this Thursday night. Currently the Scarlet Knights are a 10 and a half point favorites at home.
Possible Sun Bowl Opponent: Oregon State (8-4)
This is definitely not a matchup any Irish fan or alum wants to see Notre Dame play. All oneself has to do is remember the Fiesta Bowl and the Insight.com Bowl with the Beavers.
Texas Bowl (Dec. 30th)
This Houston-based bowl game will not be a fan favorite either because this contest will be aired by the NFL Network. Unless you are a subscriber to this channel, most Irish fans will be watching this game at their local sports bars!
Possible Texas Bowl Opponent: Rice (9-3) or Houston (7-5)
Whichever squad the Irish could possibly face in this game will definitely have the backing of the home crowd as both schools are just a stone's throw away from Reliant Stadium.
Both Rice and Houston are two of highest scoring teams in the nation averaging a little over 41 points per game. Houston has the second-best offense in the country with a 575 yard output, while Rice is 10th averaging 472 yards. The Owls also have one of the better receiving tandems in Division I in Jarrett Dillard (102 ypg) and James Casey (101 ypg).
So if the Texas Bowl becomes a reality, the Irish could have their hands full with these explosive offenses.
Independence Bowl (Dec. 28th)
There are a lot better places to spend your holidays than Shreveport, Louisiana, but this game could be the streak breaker if the Irish land there.
Possible Independence Bowl Opponent: Louisiana Tech (7-5) or UL-Lafayette (5-6)
Both the Ragin' Cajuns and Bulldogs are a run first team as they rank 5th (273 ypg) and 27th (195 ypg) nationally. On the flip side, both squads are giving up a lot of yardage to their opponents. Louisiana-Lafayette is yielding 431 yards, while Louisiana Tech is giving up 379 yards.
If there's anything close to a sure bet win, place your money on the Irish if they go to Shreveport.
Hawaii Bowl (Dec. 24th)
The most ideal vacation spot could be the most hostile environment. Notre Dame has not been on the Island since Bob Davie's first season as head coach, and the Irish barely survived.
Possible Hawaii Bowl Opponent: Hawaii (7-5)
The Warriors are not potent as they were when they had Colt Brennan and June Jones running the show, but are still and dangerous squad when they play at home. Would it be worth the price to play in paradise for such a risky bowl game? that's the three-quarter million dollar question the Irish could be asking themselves.
Poinsettia Bowl (Dec. 23rd)
Another beautiful vacation spot (San Deigo) with a lot of bad scenarios for the Irish.
Possible Poinsettia Bowl Opponent: BYU (10-2)
Once considered a BCS buster, BYU is settling for Poinsettia Bowl appearance which doesn't make the Cougars much happy one bit. Besides playing a squad that feels jolted in not playing a better bowl, the Cougars are a dangerous team that the Irish would have a hard time with.
This is the most likely of destinations for the Irish, and definitely one of the worst matchups for the Notre Dame.