Red zone defense key for Notre Dame

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Late in the second quarter of the season opener, Navy took the first snap inside the Notre Dame red zone. From the Irish 16, Trey Miller lost seven yards and fumbled. Defensive end Stephon Tuitt returned it 77 yards for a touchdown. Navy did not get another rushing attempt inside the Notre Dame red zone.

That is what is known as a spoiler alert. Over 12 games, the narrative rarely wavered. Tuitt's touchdown for No. 1 Notre Dame from its defensive red zone is half as many as the Irish allowed. That's right: 12 games, two rushing touchdowns.

"With us," fifth-year senior Kapron Lewis-Moore said, "as long as you put the ball down, and the ball's not in the end zone, we're going to fight."

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