October 14, 2007 // Notre Dame Football

More Thoughts from the Road – Boston College Game

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So while Jeff and I are sitting here watching the Patriots-Cowboys game while we are waiting for our flights, I figured I would post some comments on the game. These will be brief and I will have some more stuff this week as I recover from my 10 day road trip which had me take in the UCLA game then visit Vegas, San Diego, and Chicago before spending the last 3 days in South Bend.

Offense

  • Sharpley should start. I was wrong. Way wrong in fact. Clausen has been good at avoiding mistakes, but Sharpley has been good at making plays.
  • That said, Sharpley still holds onto the ball too long. On the pass to Parris that got called back because of Turk’s holding penalty, he held onto the ball entirely too long and the safety almost had time to recover. He had Sharpley open immediately and should have let it go.
  • Speaking of that play, why is Turkovich still starting?
  • What happened to the running game that we saw against Michigan State? Our season rushing statistics – 225 yards on 220 attempts is pathetic. Even if you take out the sack yardage, we have gained just 468 yards through 7 games.
  • Robbie Parris is going to be a pretty good receiver, but he needs a lot more reps. He was getting his feet tangled up way too often in the second half. Still, he’s got great hands and is using his body to shield defenders. He and Sharpley look like they have a good chemistry working.
  • Loved the play call on 4th and 1 with the play action. I hated last week’s play action at the goal line, but thought it made sense in this case because Weis set it up nicely by calling a sneak on short yardage earlier in the game.
  • At some point Armando Allen is going to break a big play.  I just hope its this year.  There were a couple occasions when i thought he had some daylight but got tripped up.
  • Duval Kamara needs some extra reps during hand drills this week because he dropped a couple very catchable balls this week.  I think starting him is the right move by Weis, but he is going to have to hold onto the ball better.  He is also needs some work on downfield passes that are up for grabs.  Weis did wonders for Maurice Stovall in this department and Kamara will need some similar work because right now he just isn’t using his body to shield away defenders.
  • If I was as bad at my day job as John Sullivan is at making the snap out of the shotgun, I would not have to worry about going back into the office tomorrow.

Defense

  • Vernaglia looked better as an inside linebacker than he has on the outsid, but we missed Mo Crum A LOT.
  • Brian Smith is not going to be a heck of a player – he already is. He plays with some fire and is going to make many more plays like his interception return over the next four years.
  • Pat Kuntz and Trevor Laws go non stop all down, every down. They play from whistle to whistle and are still mixing it up in there even though we are 1-6.
  • The attitude on the defense is slowly beginning to change. Walls, Kuntz, and some others were constantly trying to pump up the crowd in the second half and I get the sense that these guys disparately want to win.

Random

  • I think my liver hurts.
  • People from Wisconsin can handle their liquor.
  • I’ve developed a new nickname on this trip – the Anvil – as in Jim “the Anvil” Neihard.
  • I think I did some damage on this trip and I don’t think I’m eating or drinking anything but milk, Mylanta, Tums, and bread for the next week.
  • B12 is an amazing little vitamin that I will now be taking before every time I go out boozing.  I think some of us may have drank enough to kill a small horse this weekend, but we didn’t have any hangovers.  Thank you Blickster.

Ok, thats all for now.  I will hopefully be boarding my flight home in about a 1/2 hour and will hopefully be home, showered, and recharging my batteries in about three hours.

Comments to this Article

  • Daniel commented on October 14th, 2007 at 5:31 pm

    I’m still not sure about Sharpley. He looked good at times, but on his second and third drives he looked horrible, never throwing a catchable ball. As a passer I still think Clausen is better. The other thing is the play calling. When Sharpley is in, Weis runs his normal offense, but when Clausen is in he runs something that resembles my high school’s offense. This might be because Clausen isn’t fully healthy, in which case Sharpley should be starting, but if it isn’t, then Weis needs to play Clausen while calling his normal game before any decision is made.

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  • QCNick commented on October 14th, 2007 at 5:42 pm

    Great game review. Couldn’t agree more. Got tickets at the last second and hustled across the state to the game.

    On a semi-related note. I’m am going to the ND Navy game with a buddy of mine on Nov 3rd and will be in town the night before. What bars/pubs are “most hit” places for a night out before a game?

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  • JP commented on October 14th, 2007 at 8:04 pm

    First trip ever to South Bend to fulfill a lifelong dream for my 76 year old father. Two major points stick out:
    1.Clausen doesn’t have the arm strength right now to compete. His passes are in the air way too long; whereas Sharpley has some zip. Start Sharpley for the remainder of the year.
    Two…from 76 year old Irish fan, “In 50 years of watching ND I have never seen a running game so bad. Where are the smashmouth offensive linemen?”

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  • bleednd82 commented on October 14th, 2007 at 8:47 pm

    QCNick common man havent you seen RUDY? Corby’s is a nice bar to go to. Dedicated to ND and dont know how old you are but if your 21-40 you’ll have a good time. Lots of people there. I dont like the “clubs” that are here so Id stick to Corbys or Rum Runners.

    Opinion about the game:
    Sharpley does hold onto the ball to long. Sharpley will probably throw a Int if he starts and is in the game the entire time but I think there are more positives with him in there. 1. He has “killer Instinct” to throw the ball on any possible down. This helping out the running game and keeping the D honest. 2. I feel he can make throws. He has a strong arm and can go down field. Jimmy cannot throw the ball down field at all. 3. Confidence. He is confident and I think the team wants him in there along with fans.

    Now with Jimmy I agree with Daniel. Weis has the Penn High School playbook and runs it for him when he is the qb. I dont think he can throw the ball down the field or across the field. He is accurate and makes smart decisions but when you only can throw it about 10 yards that hurts.

    We were about 3 calls away from having a chance to win. The pass interference play that happend before Ryans miracle TD pass happend right in front of me. On goaline 7th row. The pass was 1. over his head. 2. The pass was in front of him and the defender made play on ball. That was horrible. Couldnt see the replay on the 3rd and 10 that sharpley completed to Carlson but spot looked good right in front of me again. Now, how that late in the game the refs take the game in their hands and call a holding call on 4th and 1 on a td. Its like just terrible they would do that. Let the players decide the game that late. BC is not the #3 team in the nation. They are decent top 25 but not top 10 material. We are getting better on D and I feel we will give the Trojans a fight. Please start Sharpley and give him a chance. PLEASE.
    GO IRISH

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  • robert t. gilleran commented on October 14th, 2007 at 9:17 pm

    1. what would have happened if evan, instead of jimmy, had not absorbed all of those big hits in the 1st half, including that blatant hit to his helmet, for which this all acc ref crew called no penalty?

    2. quite frankly, we are happy to have both jimmy and evan and think that both will see significant playing time for the rest of this season and for years in the future.

    3. this young, but very talented, notre dame team played their best game of the season against fredo, who needed a lot of very dubious help from an all acc ref crew to save private ryan.

    the turk did not commit any holding penalty on that td. that phony penalty was created by the all acc ref crew in their effort to save private ryan from a defeat, as was the celebration penalty, and others, and the non called personal fouls against jimmy.

    4. sure, fredo came out with a win on paper in south bend and may have raised his status to sonny, with the va tech staff drooling over the game film for many ways to ambush sonny at the toll both 2 weeks from now at va tech.

    5. based on the terror stalking the streets of troy out here in los angeles, next week’s usc game is very winnable since the pac 10 has already been warned of the economic consequences if another crooked pac 10 ref crew shows up in south bend, as they did in 2005.

    6. qcnick, we hope that you find a nice place in south bend for your night out. however, we hope that none of us runs into you and your negativity.

    7. people like you are the type that cause the deaths of people on their side with what are politely called friendly fire deaths in combat.

    have a great week,

    bob gilleran

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  • aaron babb commented on October 15th, 2007 at 8:13 am

    I have never seen an offensive line blatantly miss so many blocks. I do not mean physically miss the block. More so not even have a body on a rushing defender. Why on earth have we not gone to a simple “zone blocking” scheme? Obviously the current scheme is far too complicated for these guys to pick up. Just because you are a genius, doesnt mean the kids are. Keep it simple.

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  • “Gameday” Jeff commented on October 15th, 2007 at 8:47 am

    Frank,

    1. You’re right, B12 is a great vitamin.

    2. As soon as I woke up this morning to go to work, I clinically diagnosed myself with depression.

    3. You’re right, people from Wisconsin can handle their liquor.

    4. These trips NEVER get old.

    5. You’re right, you ARE “The Anvil.”

    6. My flight home scared the hell out of me. I’ve never had turbulence that bad for about a 20 minute stretch just outside of Chicago. And you know it’s bad when the pilot comes over the PA and in a cracked voice says, “Flight attendants, please take your seats.”

    7. You’re probably right…you damaged your liver.

    8. Numbered bulletin responses are underrated.

    9. I can’t wait until the next trip.

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  • QCNick commented on October 15th, 2007 at 12:05 pm

    Ha yeah thanks bleed. Everyone knows about Corby’s. I was just wondering if there were any other ones that were “must hits”. Usually I have spent my times partying on campus.

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  • QCNick commented on October 15th, 2007 at 12:08 pm

    Ok Bob. Sorry I try and be realistic and level headed about the current affairs surrounding ND football and don’t believe in your paranoid delusions. You won’t be tough to find as you will be the guy holding the “End is Near” sign and mumbling to himself……

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  • Frankie V commented on October 15th, 2007 at 1:15 pm

    Gameday,

    Good think the liver has some regenerative powers. Although my self imposed 2 week drinking ban is going to get a test on Friday this weekend when one of my friends is having a birthday party.

    Just let me know when you’re ready to get out of duty and head out to another home game this year.

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  • robert t. gilleran commented on October 16th, 2007 at 5:40 am

    qcnick,
    1. no, you are the guy with all of the gloom and doom and monumental stupidity.

    2. before my friends and i brought down enron, mci worldcom, and a lot of other bigger targets, we heard all of the comments about insanity and paranoid delusions and ignored them baded on the wimps that made them, as we ignore you.
    3. if we do end up at the same place in south bend, i will have no trouble picking you out and inviting you out into the parking lot for a friendly discussion and offering you a chance to take the 1st punch.
    4. naturally, being a coward and a wimp, you will decline the invitation.

    we will remember you in our prayers since no one is beyond salvation,

    bob gilleran and family and many friends

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  • QCNick commented on October 16th, 2007 at 7:44 am

    How am I gloom and doom? Ha. Wow. I point out some of the downsides of ND’s football season and I am “doom and gloom” yet you make every claim from a veiled conspiracy by the ACC officials, to USC, to boosters stealing our players and you’re not the irrational one? Wow.

    You are not a fan. Fans don’t blindly support their team and consistently make excuses for them and their play.

    True fans take the good with the bad and can admit when their team plays badly, and not have to give some ridiculous conspiratorial reason why they did. You are not a true fan.

    ND has had a bad season this year on the field. I am pumped as hell about the future of the program and have seen some improvements over the course of this season. But it is still a horrible season of football for ND.

    You “ignore” me yet you respond to me………odd.

    Simply because you chose to steal the name of an attorney from California for your ID on this sute doesn’t actually make you that person. Nor does it make you associated with him or his “friends”.

    I also find it highly odd that such a smart attorney as yourelf(you did “bring down enron”) Would make a thinly veiled threat of violence against someone else in writing over the internet. Saying you would “offer me the chance to take the first punch” but thereby implying that if I don’t take your offer you would in fact take it and throw the first punch. Thus threatening violence against me. Ohio State Law School perhaps?

    I also find it absurd that you are so fired up over this that you would take time out of your day in South Bend to fight another Irish fan in a parking lot. Yeah, that sure sounds like a real Notre Dame fan to me.

    Good luck “picking me out” when I’m on campus all weekend for the Navy game.

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