Notre Dame vs USC Opening Odds – Fighting Irish 7-Point Home Favorites Against Trojans

Notre Dame quarterback Jack Coan throwing the ball during a college football game.

Notre Dame quarterback Jack Coan (17) throws during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Cincinnati, Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021, in South Bend, Ind. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

No. 13 Notre Dame is a 6-point home favorite against USC
The Irish are 3-3 ATS this season, 1-2 as a favorite
The Trojans are 3-3 overall and ATS

No. 13 Notre Dame (5-1) is a 6-point favorite over visiting USC at 7:30 pm ET on Saturday. The Irish did not play last week following a 32-29 victory at Virginia Tech on Oct. 9.

USC vs Notre Dame Spread/Odds/Lines


USC Trojans
+6 (-110)
58 (Over 110)

Notre Dame Fighting Irish
-6 (-110)
58 (Under -110)

Odds as of October 17th at DraftKings.

USC (3-3) also is coming off a bye after suffering a 42-26 loss to Pac-12 South rival Utah on Oct. 9.  The Trojans opened the season with a spread-covering 30-7 victory over San Jose State and have alternated wins and losses both straight up and ATS since.

QB or Not QB

Senior starter Jack Coan was benched in the second quarter of the Virginia Tech game before reentering to lead the Irish to 11 points in the final four minutes for the victory.


Coan is expected to start again over freshman Tyler Buchner, who had 180 yards total offense and  accounted for two touchdowns against the Hokies. Buchner was replaced by Coan after throwing two second-half interceptions that led to Virginia Tech touchdowns.

Coan left after the Irish gained only 27 yards on 13 plays in the first quarter. Buchner led a 75-yard touchdown drive in is first series in the second quarter.

USC Bleeding Points

The Trojans are allowing 27.3 points a game and have given up at least 42 points in their three losses — 42 to Stanford and Utah and 45 to Oregon State. All three opponents had a season high in points, although Oregon State also had 45 against Hawaii.

Utah had a season-high 486 yards in total offense against the Trojans, and Oregon State (535) and Stanford (375) had their  second-highest yardage totals. Oregon State had 322 yards rushing in their victory; Utah had 180. The Utes’ victory at USC was its first at the Coliseum since 1916.

USC is one of the most penalized teams in the country, with 50 penalties for 499 yards, 119th among the 130 FBS teams.

2021 Four-Team College Football Playoff Odds Tracker

Tight Ends Down

Notre Dame tight end Michael Mayer was held out of the Virginia Tech game with a hip adductor strain. He is considered likely to return against USC, but the situation merits monitoring.  Mayer leads the Irish in receptions (32) and receiving yards (360) and has three of their 14 touchdown catches.

The Irish depth there is thin. Freshman Mitchell Evans will miss the first half of the USC game after being ejected for targeting in the second half of the Virginia Tech game, and freshman Cade Berrong suffered a season-ending torn ACL injury in practice last week.

USC freshman tight end Michael Trigg suffered a right leg injury against Utah and is not expected to play. He has seven receptions, second-most among USC tight ends, and a touchdown for a team that funnels its targets to wide receiver Drake London, who has 64 catches for 832 yards and five touchdowns.

By the Numbers

Notre Dame has won six of the last eight meetings and seven of the last 10 after USC ran off an eight-game winning streak from 2002-09. The Trojans lost but covered the last two as double-digit underdogs in 2018-19.

count ‘em up#GoIrish

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) October 14, 2021

USC is 2-0 straight up/ATS on the road this season and 2-2  straight up/ATS since interim coach Donte Williams replaced Clay Helton, who was fired the day after a 42-28 home loss to Stanford on Sept. 11, a game in which the Cardinal led 42-13 with 9:16 remaining. The Trojans have lost three straight home games by at least 14 points for the first time in school history.

Notre Dame has plus-5 turnover margin; USC is minus-1.

Considering USC’s success away from the Coliseum this season, the line should go down.

Author: wpadmin

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