Irish Defense Holds USC to 14-points or Fewer
Only three teams have accomplished this feat this season. Of course, all three times USC has lost. Acquiring only two scores isn’t exactly a winning formula.
When you look at the teams that were able to hold USC to 14 or fewer points (Stanford, Texas and California), they don’t quite match up to Notre Dame’s defense.
That’s a high standard considering this is one of the best defensive units Brian Kelly has had during his time in South Bend. But, it provides every reason for optimism considering the teams that were able to do this.
California obviously didn’t have a big offensive day, either, considering they beat the Trojans 15-14, but Stanford and Texas absolutely dominated their games. Stanford did it best, holding USC to just three points.
Coming off of one of their best performances of the season against maybe the best offense they have faced this season in Syracuse, USC couldn’t catch Notre Dame at the worst time.
There have been many issues when it comes to USC’s quarterback, JT Daniels. The freshman is throwing only 57.6 percent this season. Six games this season, the Trojans have failed to complete over 17 passes.
Notre Dame’s secondary is coming off a solid performance, which means if USC can’t get their passing game going, they’re in big trouble.
If there has been any chink in the armor for the Irish, it hasn’t been the front seven. They have been phenomenal all season long. Only two teams (Wake Forest and Navy) averaged over four yards per carry against the Irish.
USC’s rushing stats are a little deceiving considering Daniels has –131 rushing yards this season. With that being said, Aca’Cedric Ware and Vavae Malepeai won’t be enough to get it done.
USC simply does not have an answer for Notre Dame’s defense and it will reflect on the scoreboard.