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Notre Dame Football: Picks to Click - Stanford Week

With no hurricane in the forecast for Saturday night we should see a much better looking game from the Irish. Here is who will need to step up in order for the Irish to come out on top.

NCAA Football: Michigan State at Notre Dame Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

How last week’s picks fared

Donte Vaughn - No stats recorded

Josh Adams - 14 carries, 51 yards

Equanimeous St. Brown - 3 receptions, 30 yards

The Defensive Line

NCAA Football: Notre Dame vs Syracuse Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time this season I’m going with not just one player, but a whole unit. This is not the same Stanford team we’ve grown to known over the past few seasons with stout offensive line play. Much like Notre Dame they lost two offensive lineman to the NFL in Joshua Garnett and Kyle Murphy. The Cardinal rank 94th in sacks allowed this season and have allowed 11 sacks in the last two games. Notre Dame has recorded a sack in two of the last three games.

The Cardinal run game also hasn’t been as good as most expected before the season. They rank 100th in rushing yards per game and are coming off back-to-back games of 65 rushing yards or less. Notre Dame’s defense has been suspect all year, but has played better over the last six quarters. All signs are pointing to Isaac Rochell and Co. wreaking havoc on Saturday night in Notre Dame Stadium.

DeShone Kizer - QB

Notre Dame v Texas Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

While the weather conditions and poor play calling played huge factors into Kizer’s dreadful performance last week, he’s not going to use that as an excuse. If anything he’ll be even more motivated to make up for it against Stanford. It’s pretty much a consensus by now that if Notre Dame is going to win any game for the rest of the year, Kizer is going to have to be the one leading the charge.

Stanford has been shoddy against the pass this season as they rank 95th in pass defense. Outside of last week Kizer has been lighting up teams through the air all year long. It shouldn’t be any different against Stanford as the weather conditions should be a bit more favorable. Look for Kizer to have a huge game against the Cardinal.

Torii Hunter Jr. - WR

Michigan State v Notre Dame Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

Even though he’s on pace for his best season yet, Hunter has been relatively quiet compared to what most projected from him before the season. Equanimeous St. Brown is starting to garner a ton of well deserved attention, thus opening up more opportunities for the rest of the receiving corps. As the upperclassman of the group look for Hunter to get the first look take advantage of Stanford’s secondary.