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By · April 7th, 2010 · 2,869 views
Requiescat in Pace, Matt James

As multiple media outlets have reported over the past several days, future Notre Dame offensive lineman Matt James suffered a tragic accident that resulted in his death. By all accounts, Matt was a fine student, person and friend, and his contributions to the Notre Dame family will be missed.

It is times like these that force Irish football to the background and bring forth the …

Miscellany, Off-Season, Personnel, Staff, Statistics »

By · March 21st, 2010 · 7,532 views
Spring Football Focus Part III: Technique and Fundamentals

Spring is definitely in the air. The trees have started to bud and most of the snow is melted away. People have pulled their grills out of the garage and the bravest of souls have taken the chance during the mildly warm weather to sport their flip-flop sandals. Fortunately, to beat the winter blues out of our systems, spring also brings spring football, much to …

Miscellany, Off-Season, Personnel, Staff »

By · March 13th, 2010 · 18,177 views
Spring Football Focus Part II: Conditioning

Usually, when a coach gets let go and a new regime is brought in, it’s because the original system wasn’t producing results and, like a pendulum, the administration heads to the opposite side of the philosophical spectrum. The transition can be full of bumps and many things can happen in that short period of time. You have to break a few eggs to make an …

Miscellany, Off-Season, Personnel »

By · March 9th, 2010 · 18,682 views
Spread and Pass, Brian Kelly’s (Somewhat) New Irish Offense

While the defense may be a bigger problem, one of the primary concerns for many Irish fans is the spread passing offense of new head coach Brian Kelly. Kelly makes no secret of his offensive goal, he wants to be aggressive and vertical, scoring on every possession. As such, he favors the pass over the run, operates heavily from the shotgun, and employs an up-tempo …

Miscellany, Off-Season, Personnel, Staff »

By · March 6th, 2010 · 21,527 views
Spring Football Focus Part I: Personnel Changes

For most Notre Dame Football fans this off-season has been a whirlwind of news—a somewhat reserved excitement and hopeful optimism for what the 2010 season holds for the Fighting Irish. Notre Dame let a coach go, hired a promising replacement, said goodbye to a handful of players who are currently demonstrating their abilities for the NFL draft, welcomed eight new position coaches (nine if you …

Miscellany, Off-Season, Personnel, Statistics »

By · March 2nd, 2010 · 14,164 views
Missed Opportunity and Failed Execution, Notre Dame’s Red Zone Woes

With few exceptions, the 2009 Irish offense had a very productive year. Quarterback Jimmy Clausen and wide receiver Golden Tate turned in brilliant performances and led an explosive unit that generated over 30 points per outing.

But if there was an Achilles’ heel—and there was—it was red zone point production.

The Irish struggled inside the 20-yard line in 2009, but this is hardly a new …

Off-Season, Personnel, Recruiting »

By · February 5th, 2010 · 2,776 views
Notre Dame Recruiting Signing Day Recap

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly and his staff notched 23 commitments on National Signing Day. The Irish garnered the 21st ranked class by ESPN and the 19th ranked class by Scout, while Rivals was a bit more generous and placed Notre Dame at number 14.

Considering the underwhelming on-field product of the three previous seasons and a late-year coaching change, the results were about …

News, Off-Season, Personnel, Staff, University »

By · December 11th, 2009 · 2,595 views
Under Pressure (Already)

When trying to get a high school football recruit to come to Notre Dame, one of the biggest draws is the added exposure that player will receive, not only from the fans across the nation, but professional scouts as well. Storied history? Check. Historical significance? Check. Facilities that are second to none? Check. A schedule that covers the entire nation (as well as other countries)? …

Off-Season, Personnel, Staff, University »

By · December 7th, 2009 · 2,106 views
Where’s Our Golden Ticket?

Since the press conference held by Notre Dame’s Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick last Monday announcing the departure of Charlie Weis, the entire Notre Dame fan base has been on the edge of their seat, constantly checking the internet and ESPN, to see if any head way has been made in the search for the next head coach of the football program. Meanwhile, Swarbrick is working …

Miscellany, Off-Season, Statistics »

By · September 2nd, 2009 · 1,673 views
Benchmarking the Competition: Who Had the Best Offense and Defense in 2008?

It always starts the same way. Media pundits gushing over video-game offensive and defensive statistics, touting playmakers and storylines, and predicting the winner or the next “game of the year, decade or century.” It fires up the fans.

This year will be no different: it may not be Oklahoma’s unthinkable, record setting offense or USC’s unbelievably dominant defense, but a pair of teams will emerge …