Notre Dame Football Schedule: Biggest Challenges to an Undefeated Season

Darin PikeContributor IOctober 27, 2012

NORMAN, OK - OCTOBER 27:  Kenny Stills #4 of the Oklahoma Sooners is tackled by Manti Te'o #5 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium on October 27, 2012 in Norman, Oklahoma.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Notre Dame has already seen several quality opponents on their 2012 schedule. Wins over Stanford, Michigan and Michigan State help craft a quality resume. 

They have a few more tough games remaining if they are going to enter their bowl game undefeated.

Fighting Irish fans have been given the luxury of dreaming about playing for the national championship. That isn't guaranteed even if they do finish the season at 12-0, but fans are looking forward to the balance of their schedule.

Their final BCS Ranking is out of the team's control but winning their final five games isn't.


at No. 8 Oklahoma

When: Saturday, Oct. 27 at 8:00 p.m. ET

Where: Oklahoma Memorial Stadium, Norman, Okla.


Spread: Oklahoma -10 (via Bovada)


UPDATE: Oct. 27, 11:30 p.m.

The Fighting Irish turned in an impressive performance in beating the Sooners 30-13. They scored 17 unanswered points in the fourth quarter after Oklahoma tied the game at 13.

---End of Update---


This game has all the makings of a great battle.

Notre Dame has been winning with their physical defensive play, while Oklahoma blends good defense with a powerful offense.

Watching teams match strength against strength typically provides a great "wow" factor.

This game will be no different; it has all the makings of a great college showdown. This is a contest the Irish certainly can win but playing in Norman could be the difference in the game.

Prediction: Oklahoma 24, Notre Dame 20

Overall Record: 8-0


vs. Pittsburgh

When: Saturday, Nov. 3 at 3:30 p.m. 

Where: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, Indiana


This game isn't likely to be close. Pittsburgh isn't the same team they've been in seasons past and aren't in the same class as the Fighting Irish.

Prediction: Notre Dame 31, Pittsburgh 10

Overall Record: 9-0


at Boston College

When: Saturday, Nov. 10 at TBD

Where: Alumni Stadium, Chestnut Hill, Mass.


Boston College doesn't match up with Notre Dame in any area. This game could be much worse.

Prediction: Notre Dame 27, Boston College 6

Overall Record: 10-0


vs. Wake Forest

When: Saturday, Nov. 17 at 3:30 p.m. 

Where: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, Indiana


The ACC isn't exactly a powerhouse when in comes to football, and Wake Forest is a bad team by ACC standards.

That combination doesn't bode well for the Demon Deacons being able to hang with the Fighting Irish.

Prediction: Notre Dame 30, Boston College 13

Overall Record: 11-0


at USC

When: Saturday, Nov. 24 at 1:00 p.m. PST

Where: Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum


This has the makings of another legendary battle between good and evil. Granted, "good" and "evil" do change places depending on which team one happens to follow.

Matt Barkley has been hit-and-miss this season and a showdown against Notre Dame's defense could be too much for him to handle. If he is off just enough and the Irish can force a few turnovers, this game could easily fall to the visitors. 

Prediction: USC 20, Notre Dame 17

Overall Record: 11-1


Fans shouldn't be surprised with a win tally between 10 and 12. The Fighting Irish have the talent to win all five games and have too much talent to consider them at risk in three of the games.

Hold on for the ride. It should offer several exciting games and Notre Dame could end up in the middle of a major BCS controversy. 


Darin Pike is a writer for Bleacher Report's Breaking News Team and a Featured Columnist covering the NFL and Seattle Seahawks.