LSU quarterback Danny Etling grew up in Terre Haute, Ind., about 220 miles southwest of Notre Dame's campus in South Bend.
Back then, Etling was a huge fan of the Fighting Irish. He attended games with his family and proudly wore the team's gear. An old jersey, No. 3 for Joe Montana, still hangs in his house.
Yet while Etling developed into a high school star, Notre Dame looked elsewhere in its recruiting efforts. Etling signed with nearby Purdue before eventually transferring to LSU.
Both teams want to make a strong showing in order to secure a 10-win season. Notre Dame has accomplished the feat two times under coach Brian Kelly. Meanwhile, LSU is searching for its first 10-win campaign since 2013 under ex-coach Les Miles, since replaced by Ed Orgeron.
The Fighting Irish flew to Orlando six days before the game to adjust to warmer conditions.
Not everyone on the team made the trip. Notre Dame will be short-handed, particularly in the passing game, without wide receivers Kevin Stepherson (suspension) and Chase Claypool (injury), as well as tight ends Alize Mack (suspension) and Brock Wright (injury).
That means quarterback Brandon Wimbush might have to rely more heavily on targets such as Equanimeous St. Brown, Miles Boykin and Chris Finke at wideout. Smythe could play a big role along with fellow tight ends Nic Weishar and Cole Kmet.
Wimbush struggled throughout much of the regular season as he completed only 49.8 percent of his passes for 1,818 yards, 16 touchdowns and six interceptions. He proved to be dangerous with his feet as he rushed for 765 yards and a team-leading 14 touchdowns.
Fighting Irish running back Josh Adams (1,386 yards, nine touchdowns) shined behind a behemoth offensive line anchored by Mike McGlinchey and Quenton Nelson. The emphasis on the ground game is likely to continue versus LSU, which will be without its top three linebackers because of injuries.
Etling avoided too many turnovers as he completed 60.3 percent of his passes for 2,234 yards, 14 touchdowns and two interceptions. He added 107 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.
Senior wideout D.J. Chark led the Tigers with 35 catches for 811 yards and three scores. Wideout Russell Gage (19 catches, 270 yards) and tight end Foster Moreau (20 catches, 214 yards) also hauled in three touchdowns apiece.
In the backfield, Tigers running back Derrius Guice racked up 1,153 rushing yards to go along with 11 touchdowns. Guice missed several bowl practices because of a knee injury but returned to practice on Tuesday and is expected to be ready for the game.
LSU is stout on defense even without its starting linebacker corps. Defensive tackle Greg Gilmore (6 1/2 sacks) and defensive end Christian LaCouture (six sacks) lead the unit.
This marks the 12th meeting between the teams. Notre Dame owns a 6-5 series edge, including a 31-28 win in the most recent matchup in the Music City Bowl on Dec. 30, 2014.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs LSU Tigers Citrus VDB Sport Betting Odds and Predictions
Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs LSU Tigers Citrus Betting Odds
|270||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||
Vegas Daily Betting Free Prediction: LSU Tigers Citrus -3 and Over/Under 52 according to Bovada Sportsbook
|Name||Record||Home||Away||ATS||ATS Home||ATS Away||Offense||Defense||Diff|
|Name||Record||Home||Away||ATS||ATS Home||ATS Away||Offense||Defense||Diff|
Betting Odds Trends
|Louisiana State is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games|
|Louisiana State is 6-1 SU in its last 7 games|
|Notre Dame is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games|
|Notre Dame is 8-2 SU in its last 10 games|
|Cameron Smith||WR||Prob Mon - Hamstring - 12/26/17||Smith has been sidelined with a hamstring injury but is expected to play against LSU in the Citrus Bowl.|
|J.D. Carney||QB||Ques Mon - Concussion - 12/26/17||Carney missed the last four games with a concussion and it is undetermined if he will play in the Citrus Bowl against LSU.|
|Deon McIntosh||RB||Out Mon - Suspension - 12/30/17||McIntosh has been suspended for the Citrus Bowl against LSU for a violation of team rules.|
|Brock Wright||TE||Out Mon - Shoulder - 12/26/17||Wright will not be available against LSU in the Citrus Bowl due to a shoulder injury.|
|Alize Mack||TE||Out Mon - Suspension - 12/26/17||Mack will not be available against LSU in the Citrus bowl as he has been suspended one game due to an internal team matter.|
|Kevin Stepherson||WR||Out indefinitely - Suspension - 12/21/17||Stepherson has been suspended indefinitely for his role in an off-field incident.|
|C.J. Holmes||RB||Out indefinitely - Suspension - 12/21/17||Holmes has been suspended for an undetermined length of time due to his role in an off-field incident.|
|Chase Claypool||WR||out for season - Shoulder - 12/16/17||Claypool will miss the rest of the season after tearing multiple shoulder ligaments.|
|Freddy Canteen||WR||out for season - Shoulder - 10/29/17||Canteen had surgery to fix a shoulder injury and is expected to miss the remainder of the season.|
|Elijah Taylor||DL||out for season - Foot - 10/18/17||Taylor has a Lisfranc fracture in his foot and is expected to miss the rest of the season.|
|Alohi Gilman||S||out for season - Eligibility - 8/30/17||Gilman is expected to miss the entire 2017 season due to eligibility reasons.|
|Derrius Guice||RB||Prob Mon - Undisclosed - 12/26/17||Guice is dealing with an unspecified injury but will likely take part in the Citrus Bowl against Notre Dame.|
|K.J. Malone||T||Prob Mon - Knee - 12/26/17||Malone has been sidelined with a knee injury but is expected to return for the Citrus Bowl against Notre Dame.|
|Donavaughn Campbell||OL||Prob Mon - Foot - 12/26/17||Campbell has been sidelined with a foot injury but is expected to return for the Citrus Bowl against Notre Dame.|
|Ed Ingram||OL||Ques Mon - Undisclosed - 12/28/17||Ingram is dealing with an undisclosed injury and it is unclear if he will play Monday against Notre Dame.|
|Deondre Clark||DE||Ques Mon - Undisclosed - 12/26/17||Clark missed the last two games for undisclosed reasons and it is undetermined if he will play in the Citrus Bowl against Notre Dame.|
|Cameron Gamble||PK||Out Mon - Eligibility - 12/26/17||Gamble is dealing with eligibility issues and will not play against Notre Dame in the Citrus Bowl.|
|Corey Thompson||LB||Out Mon - Undisclosed - 12/26/17||Thompson is dealing with an undisclosed ailment and will not be available for the Citrus Bowl against Notre Dame.|
|Donnie Alexander||LB||out for season - Shoulder - 12/19/17||Alexander has a shoulder injury and has been shut down for the remainder of the season.|
|Arden Key||LB||Out Mon - Finger - 12/26/17||Key has missed the last two games after undergoing surgery on his pinky finger and will not suit up for the Citrus Bowl against Notre Dame.|
|Xavier Lewis||CB||Out indefinitely - Undisclosed - 11/11/17||Lewis has been sidelined for undisclosed reasons and it is unclear when he will make a return to the lineup.|
|Ed Paris||S||out for season - Knee - 9/26/17||Paris is sidelined with a knee injury and is likely to miss the remainder of the season.|
|Caleb Roddy||TE||Out indefinitely - Eligibility - 10/25/17||Roddy has been sidelined for eligibility reasons or a suspension and it is unclear when he might return to action.|
|Kristian Fulton||DB||Out indefinitely - Undisclosed - 10/22/17||Fulton has been sidelined for unknown reasons and it is unknown when he will be ready to return to action.|
|Sci Martin||LB||Out indefinitely - Undisclosed - 10/22/17||Martin has been sidelined by an undisclosed issue and there is currently no timetable for his return.|
|Tyler Shelvin||NT||out for season - Eligibility - 8/20/17||Shelvin has been deemed ineligible to play by the NCAA for the entire 2017 season.|
|12/30/14||ND 31||LSU 28||-8.5/50.5||L/O||-13||22||-35|
|1/3/07||ND 14||LSU 41||-9/56||W/U||286||102||184|
|11/21/98||LSU 36||ND 39||-3/47.5||P/O||-66||-46||-20|
|12/28/97||ND 9||LSU 27||-6.5/44||W/U||83||137||-54|
|11/15/97||ND 24||LSU 6||-10/50||L/U||-51||-139||88|
|11/22/86||ND 19||LSU 21||-3/-||L/-||0||0||0|
|11/23/85||LSU 10||ND 7||-2/37||L/U||0||0||0|
Notre Dame Last 10
|11/25/17||@ STAN||L 20-38||-3/58.5||L/U||87||2||85|
|11/11/17||@ MIA||L 8-41||-3.5/59.5||L/U||-113||-128||15|
|10/7/17||@ UNC||W 33-10||-12/63.5||W/U||222||255||-33|
|9/23/17||@ MSU||W 38-18||-3/53.5||W/O||-141||31||-172|
|9/16/17||@ BC||W 49-20||-14/52||W/O||211||330||-119|
Louisiana State Last 10
|11/18/17||@ TENN||W 30-10||-17/43||W/U||-6||162||-168|
|11/4/17||@ ALA||L 10-24||20.5/45||W/U||7||35||-28|
|10/21/17||@ MISS||W 40-24||-6.5/59||W/O||246||240||6|
|10/7/17||@ FLA||W 17-16||-1.5/42.5||L/U||39||22||17|
|9/16/17||@ MSST||L 7-37||-7.5/54.5||L/U||-195||-152||-43|