Last Updated Nov 26, 2022, 7:54 PM

Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. USC Trojans Picks, Predictions, Odds

The No. 6 USC Trojans have the potential to make the College Football Playoff for the first time ever in Lincoln Riley's first season at the helm of the program. USC is 10-1 and in position to move into the top four with a win over the No. 15 Notre Dame Fighting Irish this week and a Pac 12 Championship title victory next weekend. This game will be played on Saturday, November 26, at 7:30 p.m. ET on ABC from Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, California.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. USC Trojans Betting Prediction

This won't be an easy game for the USC Trojans. The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have already ended one team's unbeaten season with their blowout win over Clemson, and Marcus Freeman has done a good job improving this defense. USC has been extremely fortunate to this point with a record turnover margin of +21, but the Trojans are ranked second in Offensive SP+ and have a potential No. 1 overall pick in Caleb Williams.

Score Prediction: USC 41, Notre Dame 24
Best Bet: USC -4.5 (-110)

Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. USC Trojans Betting Odds

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Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. USC Trojans Betting Resources

Date: Saturday, Nov. 26, 2022
Matchup: Independent vs. Pac-12
Venue: Los Angeles Memorial Stadium
Location: Los Angeles, California
Time-TV: ABC, 7:30 p.m. ET
Expert Picks

Notre Dame Fighting Irish Betting Analysis

The Fighting Irish have a mediocre offense, but they have recovered well after losing starting quarterback Tyler Buchner to a season-ending shoulder injury in Week 2. Drew Pyne is completing 61.8% of his passes for 1,703 yards with 19 touchdowns and five interceptions. He isn't much of a running threat, but he hasn't needed to be in this offense, as Notre Dame has three quality running backs.

Audric Estime is the leading rusher for the Fighting Irish with 782 yards (5.8 YPC) and 11 touchdowns on the ground. Logan Diggs has received a few more carries than Estime and is averaging 5.0 YPC, while Chris Tyree is averaging 4.3 YPC as the No. 3 running back. Tight end Michael Mayer is by far the biggest threat in the passing game for the Fighting Irish with 59 receptions for 711 yards and seven touchdowns.

Notre Dame is ranked 32nd in Defensive SP+. The Fighting Irish are in the top 20 in scoring defense (20.3 PPG) and total defense (316.8 YPG), but they have only faced two elite offenses this season in Ohio State and North Carolina. Isaiah Foskey leads Notre Dame with 9.5 sacks, while Benjamin Morrison has tried to replace Kyle Hamilton and Morrison leads the team with five interceptions.

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USC Trojans Betting Analysis

Caleb Williams made the decision to join Lincoln Riley in Los Angeles from Norman, and that has been the key to USC's success this season. Williams has been superb under center for the Trojans, completing 64.9% of his passes for 3,480 yards (9.0 YPA) with 33 touchdowns and three interceptions. He has run for 316 yards and seven touchdowns, and we could see him run more as he tends to use his legs more often in big games.

Leading rusher Travis Dye was on pace for a 1,000-yard season before he suffered a season-ending injury two weeks ago in a win over Colorado. Austin Jones is the top running back on the team now, and he is averaging 6.2 YPC with five touchdowns. These receivers are arguably the second-best position group in the country behind Ohio State's as Jordan Addison, Tahj Washington, and Mario Williams are all averaging over 15.0 YPR in this big play offense.

USC is ranked 64th in Defensive SP+. The Trojans have been extremely fortunate in the turnover department with a whopping 18 interceptions and six recovered fumbles on the season. Calen Bullock leads USC with four picks, but the best player on this defense is lineman Tuli Tuipulotu. He has 11.5 sacks, three passes batted down, and two forced fumbles on the year, and he is in the running for Pac 12 Defensive Player of the Year honors.

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