Weather will play a huge impact on the game plan for both USC and Notre Dame in their 94th meeting

NOW: Weather will play a huge impact on the game plan for both USC and Notre Dame in their 94th meeting

SOUTH BEND, Ind – Rain and wind could show up to Notre Dame Stadium in week eight of the season, and it's changed how both teams prepare.

It’s October in Indiana and you just never know what you’re going to get. 

USC’s head coach Lincoln Riley knows it won’t be pretty, as he prepares for his first trip to South Bend. To get his team ready, he has his punt return players catch a ball while having water sprayed on them to prepare for the potential rain on Saturday night.

Rain may be the least of their concerns, but the wind is what could really change the flow of this game.  Not being able to throw the ball could hurt Trojans quarterback and last year’s Heisman trophy winner Caleb Williams.

The offense is averaging over 520 yards of offense and Williams is responsible for an average of 300 passing yards per game but with winds and possibly a wet ball, that probably won’t be the case. 

But USC aren’t the only ones prepping for the ugly weather we’re expecting in this game. 

“We've done wet ball drills obviously throughout the season, but you had this week to include it we in special teams, we tried to make sure we're using a wet ball and it's part of those specialists but also for the returners. And so, we've done some things to make sure that they are able to, you know, execute their assignment with a wet ball and that might be spraying the ball making it wet or more continuously trying to distract returners in different ways to catch a wet ball,” said head coach Marcus Freeman.

If it happens to impact the pass game, we know Notre Dame can run the ball. It’s the structure of the program.

Although it’s overshadowed by Williams’ impressive arm, Southern Cal has a decent run game too. Led by Marshawn Lloyd, averaging 86 yards per game.

If Lloyd is in the game plan, Notre Dame must fix an issue they’ve had since last year, missed tackles.

The Irish missed 99 tackles in 2022 and have already missed 60 tackles through 7 games.

In order to win at home Saturday night, they will have to stop the run game and improve their tackling.

“They got a stable of good running backs. A good offensive line and good scheme. You know, so we got to be able to stop the run. And we got to do it in different ways. And thanks, success on defense always starts with being able to stop the run,” Freeman added.

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