Notre Dame Locks Up Spot in ACC Championship Game
By: Mike Stiles - Thursday, December 3, 2020

UNDATED - The ACC announced a series of scheduling changes Tuesday that allowed Notre Dame to clinch a spot in the ACC championship game Dec. 19. In addition, the ACC has changed its testing procedures, requiring teams to have a PCR test administered on Thursdays so they can receive their results before traveling for games.

Among the scheduling changes to note: Both Notre Dame and Clemson now will have an open date Dec. 12, a week before the ACC championship game in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Irish had been scheduled to play Wake Forest, while the Tigers did not have a game scheduled for that day. Though Florida State wanted to play Clemson on Dec. 12 after their game was postponed, the Tigers did not want to go back to Tallahassee to play.

As a result, the ACC decided it would evaluate the three teams in contention for the championship game -- Notre Dame, Clemson and Miami, on a nine-game conference schedule. Because the Irish hold all tiebreakers, they secured their spot in the game. Notre Dame, which is playing as an ACC football member for this season only, plays Syracuse on Saturday. If Clemson beats Virginia Tech on Saturday, it would secure its spot in the ACC championship game. If Clemson, Notre Dame or Miami cannot play this weekend, the ACC has the option to reschedule games on Dec. 12, as needed.