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Notre Dame Football

Game Thread | No. 10 USC at No. 21 Notre Dame

October 14, 2023
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No. 10 USC (6-0) at No. 21 Notre Dame (5-2) 

Notre Dame Stadium | 7:30 PM ET | NBC | Line: Notre Dame -3.0 | O/U: 60

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Five Players To Watch

Notre Dame RB Jeremiyah Love
Love has been great and earned his spot as Notre Dame's RB2 as the season has progressed. He's averaging 7.1 yards per carry and that's an incredible number given that his longest on the season is only 36-yards, which came on a fake punt. This could be a game where Love breaks a big one as a runner or receiver. He's due.

USC WR Zachariah Branch
Will Branch be healthy after missing the last two games? He's expected to play and has been practicing, but not as a full participant this week. He's a game wrecker as a returner and can flip a game with his speed. 

Notre Dame DT Howard Cross
Cross has been great for the Irish defense this season and they'll need him to continue that against USC. They need him to disrupt the pocket for Caleb Williams and make an impact stopping the run.

USC S Caleb Bullock
A ballhawk in the secondary who had five interceptions last season, he's the best player in USC's back seven...in coverage. He's had issues tackling and he's not alone. They are 111th in PFF's tackling grades. 

Notre Dame OT Blake Fisher
Fisher has had a disappointing season and he gets no break this week against a couple of very good USC edge rushers. Notre Dame needs him to play at a high level and be dominant as a run blocker.


Quotes of the Week

Notre Dame head coach Marcus Freeman:
“As I told them on Monday, every week at Notre Dame is challenging. That’s what they do. I know they had midterms this week, but it goes back to preparation for your mid-terms and going doing a good job. 

“We won’t look to make any excuses. We embrace the challenge of the academic rigors of Notre Dame. It’s what makes this place so special. Our guys have done a great job. They have to prioritize getting rest and prioritize not wasting time. I think they’ve done a really good job.” 

Notre Dame offensive coordinator Gerad Parker:
“It starts with me. Sometimes when you call it on third down that I was hoping to get four downs on you’re making a run call to make a call on fourth down, they attacked our edges and again we didn’t execute properly. There is always one you’re going to stay up at night and say, ‘Man, maybe I can have that one back and go ahead and throw it there.’ That’s the stuff that I got to balance to make sure we attack them on. There is always an extra hat. It’s where you want it to be, and hopefully you execute better to do it. And then we got to put our guys in position to help them too.”

Notre Dame defensive coordinator Al Golden:
“We’ve got to do a better job. We’ve just got to keep tackling, keep fitting it, keep working through it. You're right. There were a couple tackles there that should have been — even earlier in the game, like sometimes you miss a tackle earlier in the game and someone bails you out. But you cannot, as a coach or as a standard on defense, say, ‘Oh, that's OK. That's OK.” Because it's not OK. I mean, we missed tackles early on, on a couple of screens. And they were two-yard gains that ended up being eight-yard gains.  

“That changes that series of downs. And then, as you said earlier, we just have to do a better job. So, we're working on it. But we’ve got to get the ball on the ground. And I think if we get the ball on the ground, our guys have confidence that we can get some red-zone stops. If you don't get the ball on the ground, you don't have that opportunity. If I was angry about anything on the long run, it was just — get the ball on the ground, and let’s play the next down.”  

Notre Dame TE Mitchell Evans:
”We don't really have an identity crisis, I would say. I just feel like that game was just a blip, to be honest, but I feel like our identity is when we want to run the ball, we can run the ball. Or when we want to pass the ball, we can pass. Whatever the situation needs, I feel like that's our identity. Whatever we need to do, we can do it. Whether if it's fourth-and-16, we gotta scramble and get the first down.Just any type of any type of player or situation, I feel like we can do that. It’s not like if it's a fourth-and-1 situation but our team can't run the ball, we have to pass it. I feel like we don’t struggle with that.” 

Notre Dame WR Jordan Faison:
”I definitely think I'm up to date with the playbook. I learned a lot over fall camp, and then especially now being involved into the offense. Coach Stuckey has taken a little extra time with me going over the playbook.”

Notre Dame DL Rylie Mills:
”I think everyone's kind of rallied around. Our goal is we're never satisfied. There's a million excuses you can make for everything but you know it comes to Tuesday like you gotta come out in practice your butt off or else like not be successful.” 

Notre Dame S Xavier Watts:
“It’s just coming out and having a mindset. Tackling is difficult. Everybody has to work on it, I feel like. Obviously we try to get better at it every day in practice, so we have to translate that to the game. Those angles are really important and staying vertical as much as you can. At the end of the day, it’s just shooting your shot, don’t be too hesitant with it. Those are the kinds of things I’ve been working on. I feel like lately I’ve been a little too hesitant. I just need to shoot my shot and show I’m capable of what I’ve known to do, what I’ve done before. Just thinking too much out there.” 


TEAM STATS

STAT USC NOTRE DAME
Total Yards 523.3 437.9
Passing  355.2 266.9
Rushing 168.2 171.0
Yards Allowed 421.3 279.4
Passing Allowed 264.3 146.6
Rushing Allowed 157.0 132.9

For Your Nerves 


PRESSERS

Under Armour White Notre Dame Fighting Irish Infinite 5 Running Shoe

Game Thread | No. 10 USC at No. 21 Notre Dame

115,059 Views | 920 Replies | Last: 9 mo ago by JEB1979
mattfreeman
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RWIRISH
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The entire OL including Fisher have been very disappointing. Of course play calling hasn't helped.
mattfreeman
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Former players who are back in town that I know of so far...
Michael Floyd
Ian Book
Justin Yoon
Robby Toma
Jamir Jones
Shaun Crawford
mattfreeman
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mattfreeman
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mattfreeman
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mattfreeman
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ndsean44
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I don't think it can be overstated how crucial this game is for Marcus Freeman moving forward.

He needs to earn back the trust and confidence of the fanbase.

More of what happened the last few weeks, and I think he'll have lost the trust.
mattfreeman
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Notre Dame wins the toss and defers.
Wiggs4Irish
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ndsean44 said:

I don't think it can be overstated how crucial this game is for Marcus Freeman moving forward.

He needs to earn back the trust and confidence of the fanbase.

More of what happened the last few weeks, and I think he'll have lost the trust.


Mike alluded to this on Power Hour. Huge, huge game in MF coaching career. Must win.
mattfreeman
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Watch for Jaylen Sneed at vyper tonight.
mattfreeman
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JJB misses a sack.
irishbearcat09
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The green mouth guard is the biggest self own I have ever seen LOL
mattfreeman
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3rd-and-9: USC gets 11
Rwolf101
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JJB with two good okays so far. What an underrated pickup.
Andrew Mentock
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JJB with a missed sack on 2nd and 9. Williams didn't get much, but that can't happen consistently in this game.

mattfreeman
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XAVIER WATTS PICK.
ndsean44
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mattfreeman said:

JJB misses a sack.
Got the feeling we're gonna hear "missed sack" a lot today.
ohiondfan
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mattfreeman said:

3rd-and-9: USC gets 11


Ok so my tv is about 1 minute behind
mattfreeman
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Notre Dame will start at the USC 12.
Cassin
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Boom
mattfreeman
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Jaden Greathouse and Jordan Faison in for Notre Dame's first play.
irishbearcat09
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F*** Caleb Williams

Sorry just reading my toenails
Rwolf101
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Absolutely huge! JJB made that happen
What do I know?
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Caleb Williams made a business decision on that failed tackle attempt...
Cassin
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Imagine if we didn't get JJB
Andrew Mentock
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Xavier Watts picks off Caleb Williams on the opening drive for the Trojans and returns it 38 yards to the USC 12-yard line.

That's Williams' second interception of the season.
Rwolf101
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irishbearcat09 said:

F*** Caleb Williams

Sorry just reading my toenails

dude how many toes do you have?
mattfreeman
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3rd-and-2: Sam Hartman to Gi'Bran Payne for a 4-yard touchdown

No. 21 Notre Dame 7
No. 10 USC 0

11:30 | 1Q

3 plays, 12 plays in 1:23
Cassin
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Let's goooooo
Joe1976
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THERE WE GO!!!!
Rwolf101
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Love the td call but can we not run at Bear for the rest of the night please?
ndsean44
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This drive is more offense I've seen from this team in almost a month.
Cassin
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Greathouse needs to finish that block
mattfreeman
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Joe Montana on the field.
 
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