10 Key Facts About Notre Dame

The 1-7 Tar Heels face a daunting task on Saturday -- beating No. 11 Notre Dame in South Bend. The nationally televised (NBC) game will kick-off at 2:30 p.m. Get to know North Carolina's next opponent ...

1. Since the AP began certifying titles in 1936, Notre Dame has won eight national championships (1943, 1946, 1947, 1949, 1966, 1973, 1977 & 1988) – more than any other school. Knute Rockne, George Gipp, The Four Horsemen, The Legend of Rudy and Touchdown Jesus are some of the lexicons synonymous with the most storied college football program in history.

2. North Carolina is 1-15 all-time against the Fighting Irish, last traveling to South Bend in 1971 with linebacker John Bunting serving as a co-captain. In the last meeting between the two schools in 1977, backup sophomore quarterback Joe Montana threw an 80-yard touchdown pass with 1:03 remaining for a comeback victory over the Tar Heels at Kenan Stadium, 21-14. UNC's lone win in the series came in 1960 with a 12-7 victory in Chapel Hill.


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3. A win over North Carolina this week would mark the sixth straight for Notre Dame (8-1) and secure its best season start since 1998. The Irish's only defeat came at the hands of then 11th ranked Michigan, 47-21.

4. Notre Dame averages 387.2 yards of offense per game, with 280.0 – 11th best in the country – coming via the arm of senior quarterback Brady Quinn and the passing attack. He's thrown 21 touchdowns this season.

5. The 6-foot-3, 233-pound Quinn is an NFL lock. He holds practically every Irish passing record and it's not even close. He holds the school-record for total offense yardage (10,673), completions (833), attempts (1,439), passing yards (10,569), passing yards per game (240.2) and touchdowns (79).

6. Junior tailback Darius Walker (5-10, 208) is the team's leading rusher and is currently sixth on the school's all-time list with 2,664 career rushing yards. This year he's gained 682 net yards and ran for three touchdowns. He's also the Irish's second leading receiver with 312 yards and a touchdown.

7. Along with Walker, Quinn throws frequently to three other primary receiver, who each have over 500 yards receiving. Senior ‘X' receiver Rhema McKnight (6-2, 208) leads the team with 617 receiving yards and nine touchdowns. Senior ‘Z' Jeff Samardozia (6-5, 216) has caught seven touchdown passes.


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8. Senior tight end John Carlson is making a push for All-America, as he's currently leading the nation in receiving yards per game (66.1) at his position. He had 121 yards receiving in Notre Dame's stirring comeback victory over Michigan State earlier this season.

9. Defensively, the Irish are allowing opponents 330.4 yards per game (138.2 rush, 192.1 pass). Middle linebacker Maurice Crum, Jr. leads the team with 62 tackles, including seven for losses. Safties Tom Zbikowski and Chinedum Ndukwe each has 52 stops, and defensive end Victor Abiamiri leads Notre Dame with 12.5 tackles for loss and eight sacks.

10. Freshman defensive back Raeshon McNeil is a former Davie Co. High School teammate of UNC's Cooter Arnold and Logan Buchanan. Junior defensive back David Williams is from Raleigh.


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