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Irish Insights


Notre Dame-Tulsa preview

Notre Dame will kickoff against Tulsa in about an hour.

The Irish have dedicated today's game in the honor of Declan Sullivan, a 20-year-old junior who died filming football practice Wednesday.

Along with dealing with what is sure to be an emotional day for the coaches and players, the Irish will be trying to rebound from last weekend's loss to Navy.

The Irish are 4-4 with four games remaining, counting today, on the schedule. Coach Brian Kelly talked this week about the importance of getting to six wins to become bowl eligible.

Notre Dame's best chances to get two wins would appear to today against Tulsa and on Nov. 20 against Army. The Irish also play No. 8 Utah on Nov. 13, after a bye, and they close the season on the road against USC on Nov. 27.

The Irish do not have any easy task going for their fifth win against the Golden Hurricane (4-3).

Tulsa has the eighth best offense in the nation, averaging 491.6 yards, and it has the 13th best scoring offense, averaging 38.4 points.

Going for Notre Dame is Tulsa's defense is 109th in pass efficiency defense (149.2), and the Golden Hurricane are giving up 443.3 yards per game, 108th nationally.

Notre Dame will need to score points against a team that scores in bunches, and the Irish will need to shore up a run defense that gave up 367 rushing yards to the Midshipmen last week.

Receiver Michael Floyd, who missed last weekend's game with a a hamstring injury, is going through the normal warmup routine. It looks like the Irish will have one of their top offensive weapons back.

The Irish will likely be with linebacker Carlo Calabrese, who injured his hamstring in last week's loss.

It's hard to say how the emotions of today will affect the Irish, but they have a good chance at winning today.

Prediction: Notre Dame 35, Tulsa 31