Notre Dame had mixed results last season against option teams.
Navy ran for 367 yard in a 35-17 Irish loss, but Army only had 135 rushing yards in a 27-3 Irish win.
The Irish (3-2) face their first option offense of the season when they play host to Air Force (3-1) at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.
While last year's games against Navy and Army provide something of a template to prepare for Air Force, defensive coordinator Bob Diaco said the Falcons provide a challenge that Notre Dame never sees.
"The offense is unique, and it's not something we ever see," Diaco said. "You hear comparisons, 20 years ago, I hear they ran some option around here. Well, you've seen our practices. It is not only a unique offense, it's really unique to us and what we see every day."
The Falcons' uniqueness comes from not being married to running out of the option.
Air Force mixes in different run looks, and it can hurt teams in the passing game. Quarterback Tim Jefferson, who is the team's second leading rusher with 210 yards, is very accurate. The senior has completed 33 of 47 passes and of his 33 completions, five have been touchdowns.
The various ways to attack teams has Air Force entering Saturday with the third best rushing attack, 364.5 yards per game, and 17th highest scoring offense, 38.5 points per game.
"They're 300 and change rushing the ball, third in America. Every sixth pass completed is a touchdown. Every ninth attempt that they make, even just throwing it is a touchdown. They are dynamic from a production stand point," Diaco said.