The Marcus Freeman era at Notre Dame is not off to a great start.
With Saturday’s stunning 26-21 loss to Marshall, Freeman has now lost his first three games as the Fighting Irish head coach. That makes him the first coach in school history to ever start their career with three straight losses.
The first two losses are somewhat understandable, and maybe even acceptable.
In Freeman’s first game, Notre Dame lost a tight 37-35 Fiesta Bowl to Oklahoma State. Not only was Freeman going into a tough spot in replacing Brian Kelly, but Oklahoma State was a top-10 team. It’s a close game between two strong teams. Sometimes you lose.
Last week Notre Dame opened the 2022 season on the road against one of the nation’s best teams in Ohio State, a tough game for any team, and dropped a 21-10 decision. Not a great showing, but again, not a game that many expected Notre Dame to win.
It is Saturday’s loss that is the brutal one.
Notre Dame went into the game at home, as a top-10 ranked team, and a 20-point favorite and was unable to do anything offensively.
Marshall took the lead with under six minutes to play in the fourth quarter when Devin Miller hauled in a three-yard touchdown.
Just a couple of plays later Steven Gilmore delivered the knockout punch with a 37-yard pick-six to give Marshall an 11-point lead.