No. 4 Irish put winning streaks on line against Cardinals

Louisville (1-3, 0-3 ACC) at No. 4 Notre Dame (3-0, 2-0), Saturday at 2:30 p.m. ET (NBC).

Line: Notre Dame by 16 1/2.

Series record: Tied 1-1.

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

The fourth-ranked Fighting Irish have climbed into the College Football Playoff conversation with three consecutive victories and hope to continue to shake off the rust from a 21-day layoff due to COVID-19 against a Cardinals team which is on the road for the third straight week and has lost three straight ACC games to Miami (47-34), Pittsburgh (23-20) and Georgia Tech (46-27).

KEY MATCHUP

Notre Dame’s secondary vs. Louisville’s receiving corps. The Irish have allowed a combined 636 passing yards in victories over Duke (27-13), South Florida (52-0) and Florida State (42-26). Cornerbacks Nick McCloud and TaRiq Bracy and safeties Kyle Hamilton and Shaun Crawford figure to be tested by Cardinals quarterback Malik Cunningham and wide receivers Tutu Atwell, Dez Fitzpatrick and tight end Marshon Ford.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Louisville: Cunningham. The redshirt junior passed for two touchdowns and 229 yards and ran for 50 yards and two scores in a loss at Georgia Tech last Friday night. For the season, Cunningham has completed nearly 59% of his passes for 986 yards and nine touchdowns.

Notre Dame: RBs Kyren Williams and Chris Tyree. Each surpassed 100 rushing yards during a victory over Florida State last Saturday. Williams passed the century mark for the second time this season with his career-best 185 yards on 19 carries. Tyree ran for 103 yards on 11 carries. They each average 7.5 yards per carry.

FACTS & FIGURES

Notre Dame enters No. 5 in rushing offense at 270.7 yards a game after a 353-yard effort against FSU. … Louisville ranks No. 43 against the rush (156.8 yards) and 63rd in scoring defense (34.3 points). … Notre Dame’s nine-game winning streak is tied with Air Force for the longest in FBS and its 21 consecutive home victories are second only to Clemson’s 25. … In its only visit to Notre Dame Stadium, Louisville won 31-28 on Nov. 22, 2014. … Notre Dame won at Louisville, 35-17, in the 2019 season opener.

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