Anna Hickey -- Recruiting AnalystA few things I'm watching on Saturday: -- How Purdue attacks Notre Dame's defense, and if it does try to establish the passing game from the onset, how Notre Dame's cornerbacks and safeties respond to a lot more action over the top than what they saw against Michigan. -- If Notre Dame relies heavily on the run game to move the chains... Purdue's defensive line and linebackers have struggled mightily up to this point in the season, so if the offensive line can't present some daylight for Notre Dame's trio of backs in this game (especially on the edge), we'll know the run game could use some serious fine-tuning. Notre Dame is faced with the opportunity to enter into next week's bye on an extremely high note if it puts together a complete game against a much inferior Purdue team. Notre Dame 42 Purdue 13
SeattleNDFan -- ModeratorPurdue will only stay close in this Shamrock Series Classic if Notre Dame is still basking in the glow of their victory over the Wolverines. I expect if that does happen it won't last more than a quarter. Don't expect any letup as Brian Kelly finally has the kind of offense he's wanted to run at Notre Dame since he was hired, and while there are certainly holes in the new Notre Dame defense to be exploited, this year's Purdue team does not look to have the horses to do so. The Irish defense in recent years has had issues with mobile quarterbacks and covering running back and flanker wheel routes down the field. Michigan inexplicably did not try to take advantage of either despite Rice showing them that the vulnerability is still there, but the answer to that may be the mobility of Jaylon Smith, who is just a tiny upgrade from previous ND middle linebackers in pass coverage. Still, Purdue has used running back wheel routes as an offensive staple for years and because of that will move the ball on the Irish better than the Wolverines did. It is on defense that Purdue this year has no Ryan Kerrigan and no Kawaan Short and no Bruce Gaston, and that is the main reason I see a large number of points going up for the Irish at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Notre Dame 49 Purdue 7
Amruther24 -- ModeratorNotre Dame and its fan base enters Week Three riding high after throttling Michigan last week. The Purdue game has been a tough one for Brian Kelly with the exception of a 38-10 win during the disappointing 2011 season. Unfortunately for Purdue, this game is being played under different circumstances than in years past. We all know that Notre Dame has dominated the Shamrock Series since it's inception in 2009 and the addition of getting to play dress up for the game seems to really fire up the players. An early season bye in Week Four erases any potential pitfalls associated with looking ahead to a tougher opponent. Brian Kelly said this week that the team is focused on honing fundamentals and skills. If last week is any indicator, this attention to detail as opposed to opponent has filtered throughout the program. This is a necessity for playing the type of consistent football from week to week that has eluded the Irish in recent seasons and results in opponents like Purdue giving them a hard time. I don't see preparation or focus being an issue this week. Purdue is 1-1 against the MAC and still searching for a QB. ND wins in a laugher.
ND 45 PU 20
BNolan -- ModeratorGlad to see my 'gut' feelings still have a little validity after the de-pants-ing of the skunkies last Saturday. This weekend doesn't require a gut check. Purdue is bad. Even the Big Drum can't help them. They will likely show a little spunk, but just don't have the horses. ND can't play lackadaisical and have a letdown after the emotional crush-fest last weekend. It should give starters an opportunity to hone their skills, and the rest of the roster time to get gridiron seasoning. Everyone from Golson on down can work on consistency and fundamentals to prepare for what will become a brutal stretch.
ND, mid to high 40s PU 10
GaviND -- ModeratorAfter manhandling Michigan last weekend in South Bend, Notre Dame heads to Indianapolis to take part in the annual Shamrock Series game. In a tilt that amounts to a scrimmage against a hapless Purdue squad that is reeling one week after being trounced by Central Michigan, the Irish are waiting to fill in the final score of what is surely checked off as a win on their schedule. As of Thursday night, the Irish are slotted as a 29.5 favorite for this weekend's game and while there is nothing to suggest that they won't cover it, it's only natural to assume some degree of an emotional letdown. Expect the offense to continue rolling and expect 500 yards of total offense with senior quarterback Everett Golson continuing to do damage with both his arm and legs. Also expect a heavy dose of Greg Bryant this week. Defensively, the squad may take a step back as they continue to integrate numerous freshmen into the lineup at an even greater rate. Past matchups between the teams have been alarmingly close despite Notre Dame having the more talented team by a wide margin. The major reason for that was that Purdue had a player or two that could disrupt enough on their own to make others better; they don't have that this year.
ND 45 PU 16 PS: Michigan STILL hasn't found the endzone. ?
Morrissey79 -- ModerartorI have been on board with Tim since the off season in that we both have felt this Purdue game was the one contest this year that was an automatic win. After watching the teams during the first two weeks of the season, I think we feel even stronger about that prediction. Purdue is bad, I mean really bad. Notre Dame will come out inspired as they always have in the Shamrock Series games.
ND 45 Purdue 13 Note: O'Malley's full game preview will be published Friday afternoon.