You are wrong about the academic standards. It is more difficult to get into Notre Dame than it is LSU, period. It hurts them on the football field, but that's the kind of standards that are instilled there. When every school in the country was using the redshirt to get 5 yrs from their players, ND was the very last to succumb and went many years at this huge disadvantage. Most of your thread is correct. The mystique of ND football will never be the same but its still Notre Dame,one of the most well-known universities in the world. They are not a show.
They wouldn't go to bowls for years and years, but then they gave in to the money and prestige, just as every other school did. You mentioned their change on redshirts. They've essentially joined the ACC to protect themselves. They are no different than any other school. And if they have to soften the requirements to get a few recruits in school, they will do so.
Great academic institution, without question, but they have shown time & time again that they are no longer set apart from other schools when it comes to intercollegiate athletics.