Key Matchup Analysis: Four Things to Watch When No. 10 USC Takes on No. 21 Notre Dame

As No. 10 USC gears up to face No. 21 Notre Dame at Notre Dame Stadium, this highly anticipated matchup has fans and analysts on the edge of their seats. The USC Trojans are coming off a four-game losing streak against their rivals and hope to continue last year’s victory in this storied rivalry.

USC’s Offensive Challenges

Four things to watch when No. 10 USC faces No. 21 Notre Dame - Los Angeles Times

The Trojans have been a scoring machine this season, leading the nation with an impressive 51.8 points per game. However, recent performances have shown signs of malfunction, with USC struggling on third downs. They’ve only converted 32.1% in their last three games, a significant drop from last year’s second-best national ranking of 53.6%. Coach Lincoln Riley emphasizes the importance of avoiding third-and-long situations and keeping the offense on track.

Caleb Williams, the USC quarterback, also needs to steer clear of first- and second-down sacks, as these can disrupt the team’s offensive rhythm. In their last game against Arizona, Williams was sacked four times, two of which occurred on first and second downs.

Special Teams: Missing Zachariah Branch

Zachariah Branch electrified USC’s special teams with his kick and punt returns for touchdowns early in the season. However, an injury has kept him sidelined for two games, leaving the Trojans searching for a spark. Coach Riley hints at Branch’s return in the near future, reassuring fans that it’s not a long-term issue. USC’s special teams performance may be a crucial factor to watch in this matchup.

Defensive Injuries and Linebacker Uncertainty

Tips for Avoiding the Most Common Football Injuries | Bon Secours Blog

USC’s defense faces its own set of challenges. After an intense game against Arizona, linebacker Mason Cobb revealed he has been battling a rib injury for the past month. If Cobb is unavailable, the Trojans may turn to Raesjon Davis, who previously started in his place. However, his recent limited role and lack of tackles are areas of concern for the USC defense.

Cornerback injuries are adding to the Trojans’ defensive woes, with the team being forced to field fourth and fifth-string players in their last game. The return of Domani Jackson is expected to strengthen the secondary, but questions remain about the fitness of Christian Roland-Wallace and Jacobe Covington.

Notre Dame’s Offensive Struggles

Notre Dame

On the other side, Notre Dame’s offense is looking to rebound from a recent dip in performance. Despite an impressive start to the season, they’ve struggled in their last three games, managing just 18.3 points per game against ranked opponents. The Irish are led by quarterback Sam Hartman, who leads all active FBS quarterbacks in career touchdown passes and passing yards. However, he’s coming off his worst game this season, throwing three interceptions and getting sacked five times in a loss to Louisville.

Notre Dame’s offense will be a focal point for USC’s depleted defense, and it’s a critical aspect to watch in this matchup. The Fighting Irish’s two tight ends, Mitchell Evans and Holden Staes, have posted 100-yard receiving games this season, adding another layer of complexity to the USC defense’s task.

Both USC and Notre Dame are eager to secure a victory that could make or break their season, setting the stage for an exciting showdown. As these two college football powerhouses clash at Notre Dame Stadium, all eyes will be on the "Four things to watch when No. 10 USC faces No. 21 Notre Dame." It’s a game with high stakes and a long history, and football fans can’t afford to miss it.

Additional Aspects to Keep an Eye on in This Rivalry Clash

How to watch Notre Dame vs USC college football?

Are you wondering how to catch the Notre Dame vs. USC college football action without cable or satellite TV? ???? Here’s a guide to online streaming options that will ensure you don’t miss out:

  • YouTube TV: Stream the game live with a YouTube TV subscription.
  • Peacock: Consider using Peacock to watch the matchup online.
  • FuboTV: FuboTV offers another convenient way to tune in.
  • Sling: Don’t overlook Sling as a streaming option.

With these services, you have multiple ways to enjoy the excitement of the Notre Dame vs. USC college football game. Make sure you’re ready to cheer for your team! ????????

Could Notre Dame win the USC Trojans’ first loss?

Is Notre Dame poised to end the USC Trojans’ perfect season streak? ????

Since 2005, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish haven’t had the opportunity to hand the USC Trojans their first loss of the season. The Trojans, currently ranked No. 10 with a flawless 6-0 record, have faced limited challenges thus far. However, they’ve successfully navigated their schedule with one goal in mind: winning every game on the docket.

Will this be the year Notre Dame disrupts their winning streak? Stay tuned for an exciting showdown! ????????

How many undefeated opponents has Notre Dame faced?

How many undefeated opponents has Notre Dame encountered this season?

In what has been a challenging journey, Notre Dame (5-2) has squared off against four ranked, undefeated opponents, all under the bright lights of prime-time matchups. Their journey included a loss at home to Ohio State, a thrilling comeback win at Duke, and a potentially playoff-eliminating second loss in a recent face-off against Louisville. ????????

This season has been a test of their mettle against top-tier competition. Will Notre Dame continue to overcome such formidable adversaries? Stay tuned for more action-packed clashes! ????????

Does USC play a conference game this weekend?

Is USC participating in a conference game this weekend?

USC is not engaged in a conference game this weekend. However, the Pac-12 landscape is witnessing an important matchup between the Oregon State Beavers (5-1, 2-1 Pac-12) and the UCLA Bruins (4-1, 1-1 Pac-12). Both teams have incurred one conference loss, making this game pivotal in the race for a coveted spot in the Pac-12 title game. ????????

While USC may not be in action, the outcome of this clash will significantly impact the conference standings. Keep an eye on the battle for Pac-12 supremacy! ????????

Who is favored usc vs notre dame?

Who is favored in the USC vs. Notre Dame matchup?

In the upcoming clash between USC and Notre Dame, the Fighting Irish hold the edge as 2.5-point favorites. ????????

As the game approaches, Notre Dame aims to maintain their favored status, while USC seeks to overcome the odds. It’s all set for an exciting showdown! ????????

Who are the key players to watch in the USC vs. Notre Dame game?

According to Pro Football Focus, several standout players will take center stage in the USC vs. Notre Dame showdown. Keep a close eye on:

  • Sam Hartman: The Irish quarterback is expected to play a pivotal role.
  • Mitchell Evans: Notre Dame’s tight end has been making significant contributions.
  • Caleb Williams: USC’s quarterback is a key figure to watch for Trojans fans.
  • Calen Bullock: The Trojans’ defense relies on Bullock’s performance.

These players will play crucial roles in determining the outcome of this exciting matchup. ????????

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