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No. 15 Notre Dame, Iowa State to meet in Camping World Bowl

Iowa State v Kansas State

MANHATTAN, KS - NOVEMBER 30: Quarterback Brock Purdy #15 of the Iowa State Cyclones throws a pass against pressure from defensive tackle Drew Wiley #59 of the Kansas State Wildcats during the second half at Bill Snyder Family Football Stadium on November 30, 2019 in Manhattan, Kansas. (Photo by Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images)

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No. 15 Notre Dame will finish its season in the Camping World Bowl against Iowa State. The Dec. 28 matchup (12 ET; ABC) in Orlando will be the first between the two teams.

“It’ll be a great challenge for our football team,” Irish head coach Brian Kelly said. “I know it’ll be exciting. They travel well. We travel well.”

The Cyclones finished the regular season 7-5 with four of those losses coming by one possession, including one-point losses to No. 18 Iowa and No. 6 Oklahoma. They are led by sophomore quarterback Brock Purdy, who threw for 3,760 yards and 27 touchdowns this season with a 66.3 percent completion rate. Only three quarterbacks in the country threw for more yards in 2019 than Purdy.

Iowa State’s 34.1 points per game ranks No. 26 in the country, a needed strength to compensate for a defense giving up 24.6 points per game, No. 52 in the country.

The Irish (10-2) last went to the Camping World Bowl in 2011, losing to Florida State in what was then called the Champ Sports Bowl. In this instance, they are taking the top ACC bowl bid outside the New Year’s Six.

Plenty of eyes should tune in, even if Iowa State is not a typical brand name, since the noon kick will precede the playoff semifinals.

“It’ll be a great kickoff to the College Football Playoff as the first game on,” Kelly said, perhaps a talking point that will echo for the next 20 days.