SOUTH BEND – There is no doubt that Notre Dame players look forward to the Irish's annual game against USC each year.
But for two players Saturday night's game between the Irish (4-2) and the Trojans (4-2) carry some extra significance.
"It is deep rooted with my family having ties to Notre Dame, way back," said receiver TJ Jones, who father Andre (who died in 2011) played for Notre Dame from 1987-91 and whose godfather is former Irish great Raghib "Rocket" Ismail.
"For myself, going out my senior year, night game against USC, it doesn't get much bigger."
This weekend's game will also be big for running back Amir Carlisle.
The junior transferred from USC to Notre Dame, but not before he played for the Trojans on special teams in USC's 31-17 win in 2011 as a freshman.
"It's going to be different," Carlisle said of Saturday's game. "Last time, (USC) played here I was on the team and I was on the field playing for them. For them to be here, it is a weird dynamic for me, but it's exciting. It's a new opportunity to show what I can do on the football field."
For more on Carlisle getting ready to face his former team, read Friday's Journal Gazette or return to www.journalgazette.net after 3 a.m.