Halftime Quick Hitters: Notre Dame, Stanford Tied 7-7 in Defensive Struggle

We're getting what we expected in this game - a defensive struggle. Quarterback Everett Golson and the Irish offense have been held in check by Stanford's defense, but the Cardinal offense has continued to struggle. No one has been able to create any sort of separation, which has resulted in the tie game.

Biggest Play: Stanford fumbled a high snap on a field goal attempt late in the half, which gave Notre Dame the ball back. Golson followed that up with a 35-yard run on third down and a touchdown pass to tie the game before halftime.

Biggest Surprise: Stanford's defense has Everett Golson visibly flustered, which is a shock considering how composed he's looked all year (though he hasn't faced anyone as good as the Cardinal). This game has gone just about how we expected, but Golson's shakiness has led to a couple of turnovers that have changed the game.

Stanford Key Player: Stanford's defense has controlled everything. They gave their offense their ball at the 12-yard line - which led to the game's opening touchdown - and have only given up a single touchdown themselves.

Notre Dame Key Player: The Irish defense has looked solid, but the offense looked very pedestrian in the first half. Wide receiver Chris Brown has been their only bright spot with four catches for 60 yards and the tying touchdown.

Who Has The Edge? Stanford has been able to force Notre Dame to play their game, and the Cardinal defense has taken over. But with the late touchdown, the Irish are forcing the Stanford offense to make plays I don't think they can make. The second half will continue to be sloppy, but Golson should make enough plays to let the Irish pull this one out at home.

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