Everett Golson will make his first start at  Notre Dame Stadium on Saturday against Purdue . (Windycitizensports.com)

Purdue (1-0, 0-0 Big 10) at Notre Dame (1-0, 0-0)

Kickoff: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET (NBC)

Spread: Notre Dame by 14.5

Watchability: Since 1982, the winning team has scored at least 23 points all but once. The winning team has eclipsed the 30-point barrier 16 times, averaging 34.4 points per game. The last two meetings between the teams, however, have been lopsided Notre Dame wins.

Shining stars: Notre Dame: Everett Golson. The sophomore quarterback was solid in his debut last week, going 12 of 18 for 144 yards before being lifted in the dominating 50-10 win over Navy. Irish quarterbacks spread the ball to 10 different receivers. Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly was pleased with Golson’s patience and command of the offense, but criticized his mechanics on his lone interception. Golson could have a field day against a Purdue secondary that surrendered 137 yards to former Irish wide receiver Michael Floyd on 12 catches in Notre Dame’s 38-10 win last year. Look for Golson to connect with Mackey Award nominee Tyler Eifert early and often on Saturday. Eifert had four catches and a touchdown against the Boilermakers last year in West Lafayette. Purdue: Kawaan Short. In last week’s 48-6 win over Eastern Kentucky, Short blocked a field goal and an extra point. It marked the fifth and sixth times Short has blocked a kick in his Purdue career. For those unfamiliar with Short, he is listed at 6-foot-3 and 315 pounds. He also can dunk a basketball. Short has drawn comparisons with Ndamukong Suh for his disruptiveness in the middle.

Who could steal the show: Notre Dame: George Atkinson III and Theo Riddick. If Atkinson III gained one more yard last week, the duo would have become the first Notre Dame running backs to rush for at least 100 yards each in the same game since 2003. Expect Kelly to use them in tandem until suspended back Cierre Wood is scheduled to return on Sept. 15 at Michigan State. Last season vs. Purdue, Wood had 191 rushing yards including a 55-yard burst in the second quarter. While Short is an early round prospect for the NFL Draft, the lineman has little help stopping the run. Purdue: The Boilermakers’ quarterbacks. Caleb TerBush, a fifth-year senior, was suspended for the opener but is scheduled to start in South Bend. In his absence, sixth-year senior Robert Marve threw for a career-high 295 yards and three touchdowns last week against the Colonels. Marve is expected to see some playing time vs. the Irish. The Purdue quarterbacks have a pair of emerging wide receivers in juniors O.J. Ross and Gary Bush. Last week, Ross led Purdue with eight catches for 71 yards.

You going? Ranking the road trip: Notre Dame is renowned for having one of the most festive tailgating atmospheres in college football. For the out of town fans making the trip to South Bend, the Friday pep rally is an added bonus. The rally is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. at the front of Rockne Memorial Building. A trip to the Notre Dame bookstore before the game to learn more about the history of the storied program is a must.

Magic number for Notre Dame: 21. Notre Dame has won four of five against the Boilermakers. In all four of the wins, the Irish have allowed 21 points or fewer. In Notre Dame’s last two losses against Purdue, the Irish have surrendered an average of 37 points.

Magic number for Purdue: 23. In the series history when the Boilermakers have held Notre Dame under 23 points, the Irish are just 15-25-2. Since 1981, Notre Dame has lost to Purdue seven times. The Irish have failed to score more than 20 points in six of the seven defeats.

The game comes down to: Pass defense. The Boilermakers have a pair of dynamic corners in three-year starters Ricardo Allen and Josh Johnson. Allen was nominated for several national award lists in the preseason. On the other side, Notre Dame starts a pair of inexperienced cornerbacks in freshman KeiVarae Russell and junior Bennett Jackson. Kelly won’t be surprised if Purdue attempts at least 40 passes.

Prediction: Notre Dame 34, Purdue 20 

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