College Football Pick: USC vs. Notre Dame

Matchup: USC Trojans vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Date/Time: October 19th, 7:30 ET

Television: NBC

College Football Odds from WagerWeb.Ag

Point Spread: Notre Dame -3

Total: Off

Arch rivals from across the country continue their annual meeting on Saturday night in South Bend, where the USC Trojans will hope to beat the college football betting lines against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

The Men of Troy had a good first week of the Head Coach Ed Orgeron era, as he led the team to a 38-31 win. The fact that Lane Kiffin isn’t here in LA any longer seems to be a bit of a relief for the squad. Getting back RB Silas Redd and WR Marqise Lee from injury helped out a lot as well. It’s hard enough to play this game when you have a full complement of scholarships at your disposal. When you are lessened to just 65, you know that you have issues when there are injury problems. QB Cody Kessler actually looks like a legit quarterback after leading the team to 79 points over the course of his last two games, but now the problem comes on the defensive side of the ball. We’ve seen this defense be good this year, and holding the Washington State Cougars to 10 and each of the first four foes to 14 points or fewer is proof that this team has a ‘D’ in it. But allowing 93 points in two games against the Arizona Wildcats and the Arizona State Sun Devils definitely brings up a degree of doubt.

Notre Dame’s season is as good as done with, but the team is still probably one of the best 25 in the land. The losses to the Oklahoma Sooners and Michigan Wolverines shouldn’t be considered damning, especially since the only really bad team that has been on this schedule has been the Temple Owls. Going 1-4-1 ATS is a bit of a concern, but Head Coach Brian Kelly has himself a good team to work with. QB Tommy Rees has six picks, which is a big concern, but the bigger issue is that he is only completing just over half of his passes. It’s also not helping that the team is just lining up and throwing the football all over the place, as there is just no ground game with which to count on to get those tough yards. The Golden Domers are good defensively, averaging 25.5 points per game allowed, which is made all the better by the toughness of the schedule. However, this unit isn’t anywhere near as good as it was last season when it held down USC to just 13 points and 281 yards.

The road team has won four straight games and covered three straight in this series dating back to the “Bush Push” of 2009 when the Men of Troy came here on the road and won but didn’t cover in 2009. We already foresee Notre Dame being square in this game, and that’s why we’re backing the Trojans on Saturday night.

USC Trojans vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish Pick: USC +3

Adam Markowitz

Adam Markowitz

is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.

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