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Major bowl game still possible for Notre Dame

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly, left, walks to the locker room after the first half of an NCAA college football game against Miami, Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017, in Miami Gardens, Fla. Miami leads at halftime, 27-0. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

While Notre Dame football's hopes of playing for a National Championship were likely dashed during Saturday's 41-8 loss to Miami, not all was lost.

If Notre Dame can beat Navy this week and win their regular season finale next Saturday at Stanford, they can still make it to a bowl.

A 10-2 Notre Dame team would be a virtual lock for a New Year's Six bowl game. The likeliest landing spot in that case would be either the Cotton or Orange Bowls.

Should the Irish lose one more time, a trip to Orlando for either the Capital One Bowl or the Camping World Bowls becomes the most probable scenario.

Going to a New Year’s Six bowl game and potentially having a shot to beat a Top Ten team would be a nice way to end the season and set the program up for good things in the future.

But Brian Kelly's choosing not to use the bowl game for motivation-- instead, coaxing his guys to take a more micro approach.

"The most important thing for our guys right now is to get back on the winning ways. They can count. They know how important it is to win and win games, and they know, if they win football games, good things will happen down the road. We were 7-2 or 7-1, and they put us up there and said how great we were and then we haven't played quite as well,” said Kelly. “What we've done is refocused our guys back on day to day. We've been really good when it's been day to day. So that's been the focus this week. Let's get back to each day and let's have a great Tuesday. And then whatever happens later, then that's great because it's really about your preparation. If you do a great job, you've seen how well you've played. And then they'll all love you again. So let's just work on preparation on Tuesday and Wednesday and send our seniors off on Saturday to win. They deserve that."

Kick-off between Notre Dame and Navy is set for 3:30 pm EST at Notre Dame Stadium.

Notre Dame will be wearing special Rockne era throwback uniforms for the game.

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