Notre Dame vs. BYU preview: A battle of caffeine-free offenses

Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE

Z.W. Martin looks at the Notre Dame vs. BYU matchup on Saturday afternoon and wonders how two formerly high-octane offenses became defense-first units.

We're at the tail end of a Presidential race which has seen more money than ever pumped into a system that was supposed to limit the amount of money that could be pumped into the system. But then corporations gained consciousness and everything was flipped on its head, allowing billions to be casually dropped into collection baskets or handcarts, depending how you swing on a Sunday or on a good ol' fashioned pioneering extravaganza.

Similarly, we're beginning the second half of the college football season with Notre Dame and BYU, who in recent years have been known for scoring a super amount of times, now, apparently, defensive powerhouses, supporting limping offenses. Much like Stanford, the Cougars are a very confusing team. Here, look at what they have done so far:

Byu_medium

Coming into last week, BYU had the fifth best defense in the country. Then a backup QB scored 42 points on it. (I will concede 14 of those points were fluky.) This is after allowing 10 points over the three weeks prior combined. Somehow the Cougs lost one of those games and won another by three. BYU's weird, man.

Their quarterback, Riley Nelson, represents the BYU offense as a whole. He has thrown more interceptions (8) than touchdowns (6), including two last week in the fourth quarter (a season theme), putting the nail in the Cougars' coffin, which held Cosmo the Cougars' caffeine/alcohol/tea/piercing/tattoo/premarital boning/drug/porn and R-rated viewing/smoke-free body. Yet, BYU still could easily be 6-1 because of their very stout defense.

Apparently, luck is an Irish quality.

Notre Dame improved to 6-0 after winning another offense-free duel with Stanford, 20-13. The Notre Dame defense continued their beast mode ways, only allowing six points, the same as their offense. (Everett Golson got sacked in the Irish endzone, fumbling the ball into the waiting belly of a Cardinal defender.) The Irish offense scored a touchdown in overtime and the defense bailed them out again with a goal line stand on fourth and goal inside the one.

This week's match should be more of the same, at least for a time, as this will be the fastest team the Cougars has seen to date. The Irish D and the BYU O will see how few points can be scored, while the BYU D will keep the score pretty close until they are worn down by being on the field for the majority of the game, resulting in ND pulling away in the second half.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish 26, BYU Cougars 6

Twitter @ZWMartin

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