beginning in 2014, there is no AQ. there is no rule that says a team with a specific rank is guaranteed a spot in the Big6 bowls. therefore, there is also no special "Notre Dame Rule" anymore.
HOWEVER, if a conference (or a team, i'm guessing), is contractually bound to a specific bowl, and that bowl is pre-occupied by the playoff, that team will find a home in one of the "access" bowls that have no contractual tie ins.
ND has said that they don't want to be tied in to one bowl year after year, and prefer the flexibility of moving around.
SOOOO, here is my thought if you haven't put it together yet. ND ties into the Orange Bowl with certain minimum criteria. since they seem to play 3-5 ACC teams/year in the regular season, i could see a clause that moves them to an access bowl if they qualified for the OB, but it would be a rematch. basically, the OB contract just gets them their guaranteed "in" to the Big6 without needing a ND rule/AQ to protect them.
i also still think there is something to the talk of a pre-season/kickoff game between ND and the ACC in CLT on NBC every year as part of the new NBC contract which would begin in 2015.
for now, this is all about the ACC luring ND a little closer. there will be a day they want/need to join a conference, and we're doing our best to position the ACC as the comfortable landing spot. but that day won't come in the next 14 years, IMO, so just keep them close until that day comes.
Thread: Team #16?
Mon Jul 09 2012, 08:49 PM #15"This no more resembles that than something unlike something else resembles that." - Loosely quoting PHNC