No. 14 North Carolina State (6-1) at No. 9 Notre Dame (6-1), Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET (NBC)

Line: Notre Dame by 7.

Series record: North Carolina State leads, 2-0.

WHAT'S AT STAKE

One team's national championship hopes will be shattered with a loss. A two-loss team probably won't receive one of the four invitations to the College Football Playoff (the first rankings are released Tuesday evening). The Wolfpack still have a conference race to fall back on and defending national champ Clemson comes calling next Saturday.

KEY MATCHUP

An Irish defense that has produced 17 takeaways this season, including three in a 49-14 victory over USC last weekend, versus a Wolfpack offense that has surrendered the ball just three times. QB Ryan Finley has yet to throw an interception.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

North Carolina State: DE Bradley Chubb. The high-energy, 6-foot-4, 275-pound pass rusher already has 14 tackles for loss (second nationally) and 6.5 sacks (seventh) and is one of eight senior starters on a defense that is sixth nationally against the rush (91.3 yards per game).

Notre Dame: RB Josh Adams. The 6-foor-2, 225-pound junior is second nationally in yards per carry (9.21), sixth nationally in yards per game (138.1) and seventh nationally in total yards (967). He has eclipsed the century mark in six of Notre Dame's seven games and has seven runs of 59 yards or longer (four for TDs).

FACTS & FIGURES

Saturday's forecast is temperatures in the low 40s, occasional showers and maybe a snow flurry or two. . Last year's game, won by the Wolfpack 10-3, was played in Raleigh with Hurricane Matthew moving through and the teams totaled 311 yards and 10 fumbles (each lost two). It was the low point of Notre Dame's 4-8 season that brought changes all around Brian Kelly's program. . Irish QB Brandon Wimbush has accounted for 1,410 yards (902 throwing) and 18 TDs (10 rushing) with two interceptions. . Finley has completed nearly 70 percent of his passes for 1,968 yards and 11 touchdowns. His streak of attempts without an INT is 313.

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