Notre Dame (11-0) is coming off a 38-0 shutout of Wake Forest and has been led by its defense all season. The Irish allow only 10.1 points per game, best in all of the FBS.
After Kansas State and Oregon both lost last week, the Irish found themselves at the top of the BCS standings for the first time in its history. The last time Notre Dame held the No. 1 ranking in any poll was in 1993.
In order to stay No. 1 they'll have to beat the team that started the season at No. 1, the USC Trojans (7-4). The Trojans will be without star quarterback Matt Barkley, who sprained his shoulder in USC's 38-28 loss to crosstown rival UCLA last week. Despite losing three of their last four games, the Trojans have won nine of their last 10 meetings with the Irish and would love to knock them out of the championship picture.
Game time, TV channel: 8 p.m. ET, ABC
Point spread: Notre Dame favored by 5
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