1. Tricolor cleats. This is the reason — Notre Dame players will honor (?) the host country with footwear resembling the Irish flag, according to multiple reports (like this one). Will they mesh with Notre Dame’s blue-and-gold uniforms? Will Navy attempt to answer this opening outfit salvo with one of its own? (Update: Navy’s quick Twitter response to the cleats) Will somebody try for a Navy working uniform version of this Army gem? Only the equipment managers know for sure.
2. Other games in town. Ten high schools and two small colleges will play football on the Emerald Isle the weekend of the big Notre Dame-Navy clash. Global Football Inc. is putting on a six-game event called — what else — Dublin Friday Night Lights. Contests will be spread out across the city, including games at Donnybrook Stadium, which might be the greatest stadium name ever. Click here for a Philly.com report on Father Judge, a Philadelphia school planning its trip. Navy fans can expect to see a good number of prep-school faithful on hand for the big college game, as many of the travel packages offered by the high schools and event organizers include tickets to watch the Mids and the Irish.
3. Irish history. Notre Dame has begun its online countdown of 125 great moments in the school’s 125-year football history. Navy’s been a major part of that storied past, facing the Irish since 1927. Will Roger Staubach come up? Or maybe this 2007 highlight reel? Anything’s possible.