College Football

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           === No. 22 Arizona State set to clash with Notre Dame ===
 
 Arlington, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - There is no rest for the weary, as the
 Notre Dame Fighting Irish, coming off a loss to nationally-ranked Oklahoma,
 must get right back at it, taking on the 22nd-ranked Arizona State Sun Devils
 in an intriguing non-conference neutral site matchup at AT&T Stadium in
 Arlington as part of the Shamrock Series.
 
 Brian Kelly's Irish fell to 3-2 on the season with last week's 35-21 setback
 to the Sooners in South Bend. The loss ended a brief two-game win streak that
 saw the Irish knock off Big Ten foes Purdue (31-24) and Michigan State
 (17-13).
 
 Todd Graham's Sun Devils are coming off their own big game, but they came out
 on the winning end, rolling to a 62-41 shootout victory over USC. With the
 win, ASU moved to 3-1 on the season and into the Top 25. The team's lone loss
 in 2013 came two weeks ago at No. 5 Stanford (42-28). This game concludes
 Arizona State's non-conference slate.
 
 This is just the third meeting all-time between these two teams. Notre Dame
 has won both prior meetings, including the last one, a 48-17 rout in South
 Bend in 1999.
 
 The Sun Devils rolled up 62 points on USC last weekend, more evidence of the
 team's offensive firepower. Arizona State comes into this game averaging 44.3
 ppg (11th in the nation), fueled primarily by one of the most potent passing
 attacks in the country (seventh nationally at 358.8 ypg). While the team
 doesn't put up big numbers on the ground (146.3 ypg), ASU does possess the
 best scoring weapon in the country in tailback Marion Grice. The senior
 tailback is averaging a modest 64.0 yards per game, but he leads the nation in
 scoring at 18.0 ppg with 12 total touchdowns through four games (eight
 rushing, four receiving).
 
 Taylor Kelly has been an efficient passer this season, completing 61.4 percent
 of his throws, for 1,370 yards, with 11 touchdowns against four interceptions.
 Jaelen Strong (31 receptions, 433 yards, two TDs) and D.J. Foster (22
 receptions, 258 yards, one TD) are dangerous threats on the outside, while
 both Grice (22 receptions, 183 yards) and tight end Chris Coyle (11
 receptions, 213 yards, two TDs) complete a potent array of weapons for Kelly.
 
 The ASU defense has not had the same kind of success that the offense has. The
 Sun Devils are giving up 385.3 ypg (60th nationally) and have really struggled
 to stop opposing rushing attacks, allowing 192.3 yards per game (92nd
 nationally).
 
 Graham is understandably concerned with his rush defense at this time.
 
 Obviously we're not doing that well in that regard. I think in the inside
 running game, I think we've made vast improvements, most of it has been
 alignment issues on the perimeter, but most of their yards are being made on
 perimeter runs. I think most of it we can definitely fix."
 
 Senior linebacker Chris Young leads the ASU defense in tackles with 29 total
 stops. Senior cornerback Osahon Irabor is second on the team with 20 stops,
 while tied for the team-lead in TFL (4.0). Senior safety Alden Darby (19
 tackles) has been a ball hawk, with two interceptions and one fumble recovery
 to his credit. All-American lineman Will Sutton has struggled to match last
 season's production, with only 13 tackles, 2.5 TFL and one sack through four
 games.
 
 Despite getting a career performance from tailback George Atkinson III, the
 Irish were unable to overcome an early 14-0 deficit and saw a seven-game win
 streak against the Sooners come to an end. Atkinson finished with a career-
 high 148 yards and one touchdowns on just 14 carries. Unfortunately,
 quarterback Tommy Rees had a horrible outing, completing just 9-of-24 passes,
 for 104 yards, with two TDs and three INTs.
 
 Kelly was quick to point out it was failures across the board offensively that
 led to the loss.
 
 "This is about 11 players. We don't execute on the offensive line in the first
 fumble, we don't run the right route. It's natural for everybody to go after
 the quarterback, but there's 11 players out there."
 
 Still, the rushing attack was a welcome sight for a team that is netting a
 modest 134.6 yards per game on the ground. Conversely, Notre Dame's struggles
 in the passing game against Oklahoma were not the norm, as Rees has thrown for
 1,215 yards and 10 TDs. Wideouts TJ Jones (25 catches, 346 yards, three TDs)
 and DaVaris Daniels (21 catches, 318 yards, four TDs) are a potent one-two
 punch downfield.
 
 Despite the team's lack of consistency on the ground, Atkinson (7.1 ypc, two
 TDs), Cam McDaniel (3.7 ypc, two TDs) and Amir Carlisle (4.7 ypc) give the
 Irish several options in the backfield.
 
 It was the Notre Dame defense that was the driving force behind its undefeated
 regular season last year and run to the BCS Championship Game. Things have
 changed in one year. Despite having All-American type talent throughout the
 defense, Notre Dame is allowing 23.8 ppg and 364.0 yards of total offense.
 
 Linebackers Jarrett Grace (37 tackles), Carlo Calabrese (36 tackles, 4.0 TFL)
 and Dan Fox (29 tackles, 3.0 TFL) lead the way in the middle. Cornerback
 Bennett Jackson (31 tackles, 3.0 TFL, one INT) highlights the play in the
 secondary, while nose tackle Louis Nix III (19 tackles) and All-American end
 Stephon Tuitt (15 tackles, two sacks) are the players to watch up front.
 
 
 
 
 10/02 10:44:02 ET

Other Stories

  • ACC: Syracuse at NC State

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Florida at Kentucky

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Pac 12: Stanford at Arizona

    Saturday at 4:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NHL: Hurricanes vs. Minnesota

    Tomorrow at 8:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
ECU 56
TEMPL 70
 
2nd
NCCU 54
NCAT 50
 
Final
DET 4
ATL 6
 
Final
TAM 2
BAL 3
 
Final
PIT 1
NYY 2
 
Final
HOU 6
PHI 3
 
Final
MIA 1
STL 4
 
Final
SFG 8
CHC 6
 
Final
CIN 3
CLE 9
 
Final
CWS 1
LOS 6
 
Final
ANA 3
MIL 2
 
Final
CHC 2
OAK 2
 
Final
SEA 9
SDP 4
 
Final
KAN 5
TEX 4
 
Final
ARI 4
COL 3
 
Final
WAS 5
NYM 4
 
6th
MIN 8
BOS 8
 
8th
BAL 5
TOR 0
 
Half
CHI 48
OKC 50
 
10:30pm Tonight
POR
DAL
Final
MDES 89
MRGST 76
 
Final
SIENA 71
NIAG 54
Final
LEH 62
AMER 68
 
Final
SCAR 74
ARK 78
 
Final
LAF 89
BU 64
 
Final
PETE 63
FAIR 33
 
1st OT
BUCK 84
HC 77
 
Final
UNF 71
LIP 57
 
Final
TENNM 65
MORE 76
 
Final
COL 72
NAVY 62
 
Final
ECU 56
TEMPL 70
 
Final
FATL 62
UAB 59
 
Final
FLGC 62
USCU 63
 
Final
CHAR 84
WKENT 88
 
Final
MINN 63
WISC 76
Final
MIZST 48
SILL 55
 
2nd
COPST 83
DELST 93
 
Final
FIU 59
MTST 54
 
2nd
HAMP 58
NORST 65
 
2nd
NCCU 54
NCAT 50
 
2nd
COOK 57
SCST 49
 
2nd
APP 65
TXST 64
 
2nd
GSOUT 69
TXARL 61
 
2nd
LAMON 33
UGST 28
 
2nd
ODU 52
MARS 38
 
2nd
TXSA 56
RICE 63
 
Half
FAM 23
SAV 28
 
2nd
LATU 50
SMISS 37
 
1st
JST 31
ALAAM 19
 
1st
GRAM 8
ALAST 18
 
1st
TXSOU 33
ALCOR 21
 
Half
NICST 40
CARK 24
 
Half
TAMCC 46
HOUB 29
 
Half
NARZ 22
PORST 23
 
1st
LAM 12
SHSU 17
 
Half
ARKST 33
SALA 47
 
1st
PVU 19
SOUTH 15
 
1st
LALAF 26
ARKLR 20
 
1st
NO 22
SELA 26
 
1st
INCWORD 0
ABCHRIST 0
 
9:00pm Tonight
MVSU 0
ARKPB 0
 
1st
ARZ 23
CAL 14
 
1st
WASH 6
COL 20
 
1st
WEBER 15
IDAHO 11
 
1st
UCONN 11
MEM 22
 
1st
UTEP 26
UNT 15
 
1st
STEPH 31
NWST 20
 
1st
SUTAH 17
SACST 19
 
1st
DAVID 19
VCU 9
 
1st
IDST 24
EWASH 28
 
1st
QUIN 9
MAR 8
 
1st
BEL 5
EILL 0
 
9:35pm Tonight
DRAK
BRAD
10:00pm Tonight
LBSU
CSNO
 
10:00pm Tonight
UCI
CSFU
 
10:00pm Tonight
UCD
UCR
 
11:00pm Tonight
ARST
STAN
11:00pm Tonight
WASU
UTAH
3rd
BOS 3
CAL 3
 
3rd
WAS 1
MIN 2
 
Final
PHI 3
STL 1
 
2nd Intermission
FLA 3
DAL 2
 
2nd Intermission
TAM 2
TOR 1
 
2nd
NAS 1
NYI 2
 
1st
ARI 0
VAN 0
 
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
MON