Thursday August 6th, 2015

Notre Dame will begin one of its more highly hyped seasons in recent memory on Sept. 5 against Texas.

The teams last met in 1996, when Notre Dame pulled out a 27–24 win at Texas for its fourth straight win over the Longhorns. The season opener will be the Fighting Irish’s first of three currently-announced primetime games, preceding an Oct. 17 matchup with USC in South Bend, Ind., and a Nov. 21 home game vs. Boston College.

Notre Dame finished 8–5 last season, ending with a Music City Bowl win over LSU. That capped a four-game losing skid, which had eliminated much of the shine of a season-opening, six-game winning streak.

This season, Notre Dame returns 18 starters and will lean on Malik Zaire at quarterback. Zaire went 21-of-35 for 266 yards and one touchdown last season while backing up Everett Golson, who transferred to Florida State in May.

Defensively, Notre Dame is a year more experienced and deeper after ranking 84th in the country with 29.2 points allowed per game, including 31.7 over the last seven.

Top 25 college football team preview: No. 4 Notre Dame Fighting Irish


Sept. 5: vs. Texas (7:30 p.m. ET, NBC)

Sept. 12: at Virginia (3:30 p.m. ET, ABC)

Sept. 19: vs. Georgia Tech (3:30 p.m. ET, NBC)

Sept. 26: vs. UMass (3:30 p.m. ET, NBC)

Oct. 3: at Clemson (TBD)

Oct. 10: vs. Navy (3:30 p.m. ET, NBC)

Oct. 17: vs. USC (7:30 p.m. ET, NBC)

Oct. 31: at Temple (TBD)

Nov. 7: at Pitt (TBD)

Nov. 14: vs. Wake Forest (3:30 p.m. ET, NBC)

Nov. 21: vs. Boston College* (7:30 p.m. ET, NBC

Nov. 28: at Stanford (TBD)

*Shamrock Series game at Fenway Park in Boston.

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