Notre Dame has played before a sellout in 75 of its last 86 games road games (including tonight). In fact, the Irish have played in front of sellout crowds in 222 of their previous 256 games, including 97 of their last 108 dating back to the 2001 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl (the '01, '03, '05 and '07 games at Stanford, the '04 game vs. Navy at the Meadowlands, the '05 and '08 games at Washington, the '07 game at UCLA, the '08 Hawai'i Bowl and the '09 games at Purdue and in San Antonio against Washington State were not sellouts).
Notre Dame scored a touchdown on its opening drive for the second time this season (the Irish opened the Michigan game with a touchdown drive).
The touchdown came just 1:48 seconds into the opening quarter, which is the quickest Irish touchdown to open a game since Nov. 11, 2006 when Notre Dame scored a touchdown just 54 seconds into the contest with Air Force.
Notre Dame added two more first quarter touchdowns to grab a 21-0 lead in the first quarter. In fact, it was 21-0 before Boston College picked up its initial first down of the game.
The 21 points in the first quarter were the most by Notre Dame in an opening quarter since Sept. 13, 2008 against Michigan. In fact, the 21 points were the most by the Irish in a first quarter true road game since Notre Dame totaled 21 against Stanford on Nov. 29, 2003.
Prior to Boston College gaining its initial first down of the game, late in the first quarter, Notre Dame had outgained the Eagles 179 total yards to one total yard.
The Irish finished the first half with 24 points, which were the most points for Notre Dame in an opening half road game since Nov. 11, 2006. The Irish led Air Force 27-3 at intermission.
Notre Dame grabbed a 31-13 lead with 4:39 remaining in the third quarter following a 14-play, 76-yard touchdown drive. The drive also accounted for 4:44 time of possession. It was the longest scoring drive of the season for the Irish in terms of plays and time of possession.
IRISH DEFENSE DOMINATES
Notre Dame blanked Boston College in the second half. The last time the Irish shutout an opponent in second half was the 2009 season opener against Nevada (W, 35-0).
The Irish held the Eagles to five yards rushing on 23 carries (0.2 yards per rush). It is the fewest yards rushing allowed by Notre Dame since the Irish held Stanford to negative 11 yards on the ground on Nov. 26, 2005. In fact, it was the fewest yards rushing allowed by Notre Dame on the road since the same game. It is also the third fewest yards rushing by an Irish foe since the start of the 1996 season. Notre Dame limited Vanderbilt (Sept. 5) and Rutgers (Nov. 23) to two yards and negative six yards rushing, respectively, that year.
Notre Dame forced the Eagles into 10 drives that were three plays and out.
Notre Dame limited Boston College to a total of one yard on 14 plays in the third quarter.
Boston College finished the game with 270 total yards, most late in the fourth quarter with the Irish second team defense on the field. The Eagles averaged 3.9 yards per play for the game. If you take away the 58-yard touchdown catch from Swigert, Boston College managed 212 yards on their other 69 plays or 3.1 yards per play.
The 13 points allowed by the Irish were the fewest against Boston College since 1995 when Notre Dame was victorious 20-10.
DEFENSE RISES UP FOLLOWING TURNOVERS
Notre Dame was victimized by a pair of first-half fumbles, including one Boston College recovered at the Irish 14-yard line. Notre Dame's defense was able to limit Boston College to field goals following each turnover. The Eagles' two drives following the Notre Dame turnovers accounted for 20 yards on 11 plays.
NOTRE DAME VS. ACC
Notre Dame is 77-31-2 (.709) against current members of the Atlantic Coast Conference. The Irish have had more success against the ACC than any other major conference. The Irish have a .500 or better record against eight of ten conference schools (in which they have played).
Notre Dame's 110 games against the ACC ranks as the third-most contests against a conference trailing only the Big Ten (351) and Pac-10 (133).
Notre Dame has faced Boston College 20 times (11-9), which is the third most of any other ACC school. The 11 victories are the fourth-most victories for Notre Dame over an ACC foe. The Irish have played Georgia Tech 34 times (27-6-1), Miami 23 times (15-7-1) and North Carolina 18 times (16-2). It should be noted that all of Notre Dame's previous meetings with Miami occurred prior to their moves to the ACC.
NOTRE DAME - BOSTON COLLEGE SERIES NOTES
Notre Dame and Boston College meet for the 20th time on the gridiron with the Irish holding a 11-9 advantage. This was the seventh time the two teams have played in Chestnut Hill, with the Eagles holding a 4-3 lead.
The series features a matchup of the only two Catholic universities in the country playing Bowl Subdivision college football.
Legendary Notre Dame head coach Frank Leahy spent two seasons at Boston College (1939-40), leading the Eagles to a bowl game both years.
NOTRE DAME - BOSTON COLLEGE SERIES HISTORY
Notre Dame leads the all-time series with Boston College, 11-9, but trails when the series shifts to Chestnut Hill, 4-3.
The series was continuous from 1992-04 (13 consecutive meetings).
The first game of the series was held in 1975 at Schaefer Stadium in Foxboro, Mass. (a 17-3 Irish win in Dan Devine's first game as head coach), while the other neutral-field game in the series was at Memphis, Tenn., in the 1983 Liberty Bowl (a 19-18 win for the Irish over the 13th-ranked Eagles).
The winner of this game earns the Frank Leahy Memorial Bowl, given by the Notre Dame Club of Boston, and the Ireland Trophy, presented by Notre Dame student government. The Ireland Trophy is intended to inspire a spirit of sportsmanship and friendly competition between the schools.
Ruffer connected on a 37-yard field goal with 5:22 remaining in the first half to give the Irish a 24-13 lead.
Ruffer has now converted 13 straight field goals, which is tied with Mike Johnston (1982) for the second longest streak in school history.
Ruffer is 13 of 13 for his career in field goals. The 13 consecutive field goals to open a career is tied with Johnston (1982) for the longest such streak in school history.
Ruffer has also connected on a field goal in eight straight games, each game in which he has served as the Irish place kicker. The eight consecutive games with a field goal is the longest streak by a Notre Dame kicker since Nicholas Setta set the school record with a field goal in 16 straight games (2000-02).