USC vs. Notre Dame Preview and Prediction

The USC Trojans host the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in a rivalry game to wrap up the 2014 regular season.


Notre Dame: 7-4

USC: 7-4 (6-3)

Last Meeting: Notre Dame won 14-10 in 2013

Notre Dame Outlook: The Irish come into this game having lost three straight, which has put a damper on their previous 7-1 start to the year. Still, Notre Dame can finish with a respectable eight wins if they can knock off USC.

Everett Golson has been tremendous this season, passing for over 3,000 yards and 27 touchdowns to lead an Irish offense that has put up over 34 points per game.

Notre Dame is currently 1-3 against top-25 teams, with their victory coming over Stanford, who was #14 at the time.

USC Outlook: The Trojans dropped their rivalry game to UCLA, falling to 7-4 on the season. The loss also knocks them out of the tie for the top-seed in the Pac-12 South behind Arizona and Arizona State.

USC had lost its first three games by a combined 13 points, but the loss to the Bruins was easily their worst of the year, falling by 18.

USC's offense has been led by a strong passing game in the form of Cody Kessler, who has thrown for 30 touchdowns and just four interceptions on the year.

What to watch for: This is looking like a showdown between two skilled quarterbacks in Kessler and Golson, which means a high-scoring affair is likely.

The game will probably come down to which quarterback can play the more mistake-free game. That means the pressure is on the defense to slow down the passing game and force the offense to run - USC is ranked 78th in rushing, Notre Dame 75th.


Notre Dame - 35, USC - 31

The Irish will snap their losing streak in this game, after three close losses. The defense will be the biggest concern, but if Golson can put up enough points, Notre Dame should outlast USC.

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