SOUTH BEND – Notre Dame took a 3-0 lead after the first quarter against Michigan State after some shaky special teams play.
Kyle Brindza converted one of the few clean plays on special teams when he converted a 41-yard field goal with 3:48 to play in the quarter.
The Irish and Spartans opened with special teams miscues.
Brindza had his punt blocked after a high snap, giving Michigan State the ball on the Irish's 31.
But the Spartans could only move the ball to the Irish 13 before having to attempt a field goal, which Kevin Muma pushed wide left to leave the game scoreless with 11:12 to play in the first.
Michigan State added to its special team woes after Notre Dame's field goal when Nick Hill bumbled catching the kickoff and had to go into his end zone to get the ball and only got out the 8-yard line.
Michigan State had to punt after three plays, and Notre Dame has the ball on the Spartans' 30 to start the second quarter.
Notre Dame outgained Michigan State 114-42 in the first quarter. Irish quarterback Tommy Rees is 7 for 14 passing for 95 yards, while Spartans quarterback Connor Cook is 2 for 7 for 19 yards.