The unranked USC Trojans will head to South Bend to take on the (13) Notre Dame Fighting Irish in one of the most historic college football rivalries around.
USC (3-3) has gotten off to a disappointing start after being ranked heading into Week 1. The Trojans have suffered some surprising losses this season, including double-digit losses to Stanford, Oregon State and Utah. Their three wins have come against teams they should have beaten: Washington State, Colorado and San Jose State.
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Notre Dame (5-1) has been playing some excellent football as of late. They have won three close games — all by three points — against Florida State, Virginia Tech and Toledo.
They have added two additional blowout wins against Purdue and Wisconsin. Their singular loss came two weeks ago against (2) Cincinnati by a score of 24-13.
This is a lopsided game on paper, but can the Trojans rise to the occasion in a rivalry game? For in-depth analysis of this CFB bet of the day and others, continue reading.
USC vs. Notre Dame Prediction
As previously mentioned, Notre Dame is a noticeably better team than the USC Trojans. Not only has Notre Dame faced and beaten tougher opponents, they also maintain a better overall roster.
USC quarterback Kedon Slovis is a very solid talent who could be a first-rounder in the NFL Draft, but the Fighting Irish have the better defense and the better pieces around their quarterback trio of Jack Coan, Drew Pyne, and Tyler Buchner.
USC is good enough to hang with Notre Dame, though, despite the talent gap.
USC vs Notre Dame Betting Pick: Notre Dame 30, USC 24
USC vs. Notre Dame Best Bets
Best Bet: USC +7.5 (-120) at BetMGM
Wager: 1 unit
The line on this game is pretty sharp and I would tread carefully. I have been praising Notre Dame, but a touchdown spread is quite a lot to give up to a team as competent as USC. I believe it’s a no-brainer that Notre Dame wins outright in front of their home crowd, but I don’t believe they cover by a small margin. The opening line was Notre Dame -3 and it has since moved to Notre Dame -7. Buy a half point and back the Trojans to cover, but likely not win.
Best Bet: USC/Notre Dame Under 58.5 (-110) at BetMGM
If Notre Dame is able to control the game’s tempo, the Under should hit comfortably. Their offense has been borderline atrocious while Jack Coan has been on the field, but their defense has kept them in the fight multiple times. USC’s offense is decent enough to tango with Notre Dame’s defense, but I still don’t see either team putting on a powerhouse offensive display.
Back the Under in this matchup with the expectation that the Fighting Irish do in fact maintain control of the pace of the game.