With a 4-8 record in 2016, Notre Dame finished with its worst season since the disastrous 2007 season with Charlie Weis under the helm.
So, you can imagine all the bitterness that’s likely surrounding the South Bend campus right about now, particularly considering the lofty expectations of the Irish fan base year in and year out—a fan base that FOX Sports radio personality Colin Cowherd calls the most “delusional” in college sports.
“Of all the fan bases, I think Notre Dame’s is the most delusional,” Cowerherd said “How many coaches do you need to see struggle to realize that maybe it’s harder to win there? Notre Dame gets into bowl games they don’t deserve to be in…Because everybody knows you invite Notre Dame you get a good TV rating. Fans come from across the country and fill your stadium. You’re getting into better bowls than you deserve to get into…I’ve got nothing against Notre Dame, but if you put them in the SEC, you put them in the Big Ten, they’re a four or five loss team.”
ND may have been vastly overrated in years past, like in 2012 when, as Cowherd pointed out, the Irish went 12-0 during the regular season then got throttled 42-14 by Alabama in the national championship game. Or even last season when they finished 10-2 and ended up getting manhandled 44-28 by Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl.
After 2016, though, there’s a good chance that expectations have been tempered a bit in South Bend. The Irish will likely rebound a bit this upcoming season, but no one is expecting a Top 10 year out of the Fighting Irish.