If you’re a college football betting enthusiast that also likes delving into the historical aspect of collegiate gridiron action, then you’re in for a real treat as we look back – and ahead – at the rivalry between the Independent Notre Dame Fighting Irish and Pac-12 resident Stanford Cardinal. This fun-filled look at the longstanding Legends Trophy rivalry will give college football bettors a bit of insight into this intriguing affair long before it ever takes place in 2015.
Analyzing the Legends Trophy Match up NCAA Football Odds Report
The first meeting between Notre Dame and Stanford football first took place back in 1925 although today’s modern series didn’t officially begin until 1988. As of the conclusion of the 2014 season, the now longstanding rivals have met 29 times. The series has been played annually since 1997, with the teams meeting at Notre Dame Stadium in October in even-numbered years and Stanford Stadium on the weekend following Thanksgiving in odd-numbered years.
The winner of this annual matchup is awarded the Legends Trophy, an Irish crystal glass that is set on a California redwood base. The trophy was presented for the very first time back in 1989 by the Notre Dame Club of the San Francisco Bay Area.
This NCAA college football series began at the end of the 1924 season with the inaugural meeting taking place on January 1, 1925 in the Rose Bowl. Notre Dame’s now legendary Four Horsemen and head coach Knute Rockne took on Stanford’s Ernie Nevers and head coach Pop Warner in that contest, paving the way for today’s now annual clash. The Fighting Irish recorded a convincing 27–10 win for Rockne that day to win their first-ever national title and the first of four national titles to come in bowl-game victories.
After that initial clash, the two gridiron programs did not meet again until 1942 – before going another 21 years between contests. When the teams met in 1963 and 1964, those matchups represented the first time the rivals had met in consecutive seasons. Those four meetings were the only games the schools played before the modern series officially began in 1988. The schools have met annually except in 1995 and 1996.
Heading into the 2015 season, Notre Dame holds a 19-10 series lead over Stanford. The Fighting Irish also own the longest winning streak in the series, recording seven consecutive victories from 2002–2008. Conversely, Stanford’s longest winning streak to date has been three victories (2009-2011). The Cardinal’s pair of wins in The back-to-back wins in 2009 and 2010 represents the school’s first consecutive victories in the Legends Trophy series.
Notre Dame is 12–3 all-time at home while Stanford has gone 7-6 on their home turf. The Fighting Irish won the only game played at a neutral site when they recorded their 1925 Rose Bowl victory.
The two rivals have split four meetings since 2011. Notre Dame eked out a narrow 17-14 win at home this past season one year after Stanford recorded its own thrilling 27-20 home win. The Irish won 20-13 at home in 2012 while the Cardinal handed Notre Dame a convincing 28-14 road loss in 2011.
By the Online Betting Numbers
Notre Dame has covered the NCAA betting line in each of the last two seasons, snapping a three-game ATS skid against the Cardinal in the process. The Fighting Irish are 6-4 SU over the last 10 meetings overall, but the teams are tied at a dead even 5-5 ATS over the same span. Over/Under betting enthusiasts should know the Under has gone 5-0 in the last five meetings and seven times in the last 10 meetings overall.
Stanford went 8-5 overall and 5-4 in conference play to finish second in the Pac-12 North in 2014 while also putting together a respectable 7-6 ATS mark. Notre Dame also went 8-5 overall this past season, although they finished with an underwhelming 6-7 ATS mark.
The two rivals will square off on Saturday, Nov 28 on Stanford’s home field in a contest that should have bowl game implications for both national title hopefuls.