The Irish travelled to Oklahoma double digit underdogs and returned with a signature win to remain undefeated. The Irish knocked off the Sooners 30-13 on the strength of a fourth quarter in which the outscored their hosts 20-7. The hype surrounding the Irish is now at heights not seen in over a decade and the following players were the catalysts in this week’s victory earning recognition in this week’s UHND Shamrock Stickers:
Manti Te’o: A weekly fixture in the shamrock stickers column, Manti Te’o turned in yet another brilliant performance Saturday. Te’o once again led the Irish in tackles with 11, and also recorded a sack to go along with an interception. Te’o’s interception effectively sealed the Notre Dame victory and was his fifth interception of the season, good for second most in the FBS.
KeiVarae Russell: The Irish’s freshman cornerback turned in his best performance of the season when he was needed the most. It was apparent early that the Sooners were going to attack Russell and his fellow corner Bennett Jackson, but Russell was more than up to the task. Russell tallied a career high nine tackles in the game and kept everything in front of him, thereby limiting the big play capability of the Sooners.
Bennett Jackson: Along with Russell, Bennett Jackson turned in a great game for the Irish. Jackson totalled eight tackles, and led the team in solo tackles with seven. Jackson also contained Oklahoma’s elite receiver Kenny Stiles, holding him to seven receptions for 86 yards, 36 of which coming on a meaningless reception in the final minute. Jackson and Russell’s efforts were crucial to eliminating the Sooners quick strike ability and forcing them to methodically move the ball against the Irish defense.
Everett Golson: Notre Dame’s young signal-caller turned in another quality performance on the road in primetime. Just as he did against Michigan State, Golson managed the game and didn’t make the big mistake as he did not turn the ball over or try to do too much. Golson went 13-25 passing for 177 yards and added 64 yards and a touchdown on the ground versus the Sooners. Golson made the right reads on most occasions and displayed his toughness after being laid out by Sooners safety Tony Jefferson, coming back after missing only one play to lead the Irish to victory.