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By · January 30th, 2011 · 7,680 views
How Good Are the Irish? A Year-End Offensive Statistical Review

It may be head coach Brian Kelly’s first year at the helm, but positive change is already tangible.

While the 2008 and 2009 Irish squads finished 1-8 in November, this year’s unit went 3-0. It isn’t time to anoint Kelly the next Lou Holtz or Ara Parseghian, but Notre Dame played its best football down the stretch without several critical players such as quarterback Dayne …

Miscellany, News, Statistics »

By · January 17th, 2011 · 2,372 views
2010 Elite Selection Playoff: Final Rankings

Editor’s note: The previous week’s results can be found here: week 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7 and 6.

The dust has settled on the 2011 season, and the Auburn Tigers came out on top. It was quite the turnaround for head coach Gene Chizik. Auburn finished the 2009 season in relatively pedestrian fashion. The Tigers compiled an 8-5 record, including a dubious …

Game Coverage, Statistics »

By · December 29th, 2010 · 6,628 views
Notre Dame vs. Miami: Keys to an Irish Win

Notre Dame faces Miami in the Sun Bowl New Year’s Eve. The game marks the first meeting between the two teams since 1990 and is a preview of three future contests—a neutral site game at Chicago’s Soldier Field in 2012 and a home/away series in 2016 and 2017.

In many ways the two teams are heading in opposite directions. The Irish enter the game on …

Miscellany, News, Statistics »

By · December 15th, 2010 · 4,447 views
2010 Elite Selection Playoff: AV Ranking Bowl Predictions

Editor’s note: Special thanks to ESP and AVR co-creator Vincenzo Siciliano for his effort in the work outlined below. He did the analysis, I just made a few observations and wrote up this summary.

Disclaimer #1: The following is not intended for betting purposes.

Disclaimer #2: The following analysis does not include the Army—Navy game last weekend. It is not expected that excluding this …

Game Coverage, Statistics »

By · November 30th, 2010 · 7,509 views
Statistically Speaking: Notre Dame vs. USC

The Irish stopped the Trojans eight-game win streak in dramatic fashion Saturday night. Robert Hughes five-yard touchdown run with 2:23 remaining capped off a physical, run-heavy drive that gave head coach Brian Kelly his second three-game win streak of the season.

Looking back this could certainly be a season of what if’s. What if quarterback Dayne Crist hadn’t been injured in the Michigan game? What …

Game Coverage, Statistics »

By · November 24th, 2010 · 2,802 views
Statistically Speaking: Notre Dame vs. Army

After getting shellacked by Navy and losing a heartbreaker to Tulsa (with some questionable coaching decisions to boot), it was difficult to imagine the Irish becoming bowl eligible, let alone having a chance to win out.

But Notre Dame has outscored their last two opponents by a combined 55-6 and heads to the West Coast to battle the rival Trojans on the heels of two …

Game Coverage, Statistics »

By · November 18th, 2010 · 4,096 views
Notre Dame vs. Army: Keys to an Irish Win

The Irish head to New York City to take on historic foe Army this weekend. Notre Dame is coming of its biggest win of the season and first victory over a ranked opponent since 2006 while the Black Knights enter the game after a road win against Kent State.

The underlying storyline figures to be the matchup between the Irish defense and the Black Knights …

Game Coverage, Statistics »

By · November 16th, 2010 · 3,616 views
Statistically Speaking: Notre Dame vs. Utah

The contest against Utah wasn’t decided by production. For the most part, it wasn’t decided by efficiency either.

The Irish won because they created opportunities and took advantage of them. Notre Dame was able to force two turnovers—one that turned into seven points on the next play—block a punt for a touchdown, and string together two 60-plus yard touchdown drives.

But it was the defense …

Miscellany, News, Statistics »

By · November 15th, 2010 · 1,432 views
2010 Elite Selection Playoff: Week Eleven

There are still four unbeaten teams. Auburn bested Georgia in a slugfest, Boise State handled Idaho, Oregon survived against California, and TCU edged out San Diego State. With the exception of the Broncos, the other four teams looked largely human.

The trend of top ranked AVR teams with weak schedules continues. Of the top 10 AVR teams, six—Boise State, Oregon, TCU, Nebraska, Ohio State, and …

Game Coverage, Statistics »

By · November 11th, 2010 · 3,144 views
Notre Dame vs. Utah: Keys to an Irish Win

The Irish host 15th ranked Utah Saturday in the first ever meeting between the two schools.

Notre Dame limps into the contest off a bye week at 4-5, and with a rash of injuries to key personnel including quarterback Dayne Crist and several of his primary targets.

The last two outings—a decisive loss to Navy and a home loss to Tulsa that featured a questionable …