While Irish fans are in a good mood heading into the contest, there are five questions/points of interest the faithful should consider before kick-off.
While Irish fans know this team could be 3-0 heading into Heinz Field, it does erase the fact last week's victory over Michigan State was the much-needed first of the season. Fans have yet to see how this team reacts to success and Pittsburgh will be a solid first test.
Question Two: Can the Irish play a complete game without having a turnover?
Despite the win a week ago, there remain questions on ball security with this team. A game without any turnovers would be welcomed, almost necessary, at this point of the season.
Question Three: Will Notre Dame's special teams play continue to improve?
Question Four: Will Pitt head coach Todd Graham's success against Notre Dame in 2010 help the Panthers knock off the favored Irish?
Graham brought an underdog Tulsa team into Notre Dame Stadium a year ago and knocked off the Irish, 28-27. While he's not said much about the experience regarding preparation for this weekend's game, behind closed doors Graham likely has added confidence in his knowledge of the Irish.
Question Five: Will Notre Dame's freshmen continue to prove their worth against the Panthers?
Against Michigan State the Irish received either breakout or solid performances from G. Atkinson, Aaron Lynch and Troy Niklas. This must continue for the Irish to continue with the added dimension of players such as defensive end Stephon Tuitt and tight end Ben Koyack building solid depth throughout the roster.