What used to be one of the most highly anticipated rivalry games in the country has been relegated to afterthought status due to mediocrity and/or NCAA sanctions (guess which one!). Both teams are crazy talented every year, but have yet to be able to put it all together.
Notre Dame (4-2) will try to double down on last year's win, the Fighting Irish's first against USC (5-1) since 2001, but even Brian Kelly's obscenities may not be able to save the Irish from USC's speed. Meanwhile, Lane Kiffin and Matt Barkley have to find some measure of consistency, if not to get past Notre Dame, then for when they host Andrew Luck and Stanford next week.
USC has absolutely dominated the Irish in recent years, but historically, the Irish have a leg up, as they do on pretty much anyone. While the two teams remain deadlocked at 11 national championships apiece, this season isn't going to resolve that, but the game's always worth its weight in bragging rights.
Series record: Notre Dame leads, 43-34
Last year’s result: Notre Dame won, 20-16
Current streak: Notre Dame won the last game
Longest-ever streak: Notre Dame won 11 straight from 1983-1993
First meeting: Dec. 4, 1926