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Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Pick o' the Irish: Week 13 vs. Stanford

By Brian Bennett

Like Charlie Weis, I took a loss last week. Unlike Weis, I'm not going to lose my job because of it. Right, boss? Uh, boss?

One more to go. Let's finish strong.

Stanford 35, Notre Dame 28: What possible evidence do we have to suggest Notre Dame can win this game?

The Irish defense has been steamrolled in the running game for three straight weeks, and now it must somehow deal with the bull in a china shop that is Toby Gerhart, the nation's third-leading rusher. Gerhart and quarterback Andrew Luck should have a fun time at Jon Tenuta's expense, and you know Jim Harbaugh wants to drop the hammer as much as possible, just like he did against USC.

Notre Dame doesn't have much to play for, with a coach on his way out and already saddled with five losses. But to pick anything more than a seven-point margin would be to ignore the history of this season. Perhaps Weis rallies the team around him for a last stand; more likely, it will resemble Custer's attempt at the same feat.

Last week's pick: Notre Dame 28, UConn 24

Actual score: UConn 33, Notre Dame 30 (2OT)

Season record: 8-3