With 19 starters returning from last season, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish once again carry grand expectations heading into the season. Senior quarterback Dayne Crist will have a fine crop of receiving targets to throw to, including the 6-3, 224-pound Michael Floyd. Floyd was reinstated to the team in August following a DUI arrest in March. He will be available for the season opener against USF and beyond and should put up big numbers provided he stays on the field. Defensively, the Irish return all four starters in the secondary and and five of seven starters up front, including inside linebacker Manti Te'o.
Notre Dame will host South Florida in the opener. USF figures to improve off of lost year's 8-5 record, with several key components returning for the Bulls. Most notably, dual-threat quarterback B.J. Daniels will once again helm the offense after throwing for 1,685 yards and rushing for 259 yards last year. USF should factor into the Big East Championship race, and is perfectly capable of taking down the Irish should things bounce their way.
Game date, time: 3:30 pm ET, Saturday, Sept. 3
Location: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, IN
TV channel: NBC
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