Brian Kelly Talks Final Michigan Preparations

Kick-off to Notre Dame and Michigan for the last time (for now at least) in the Big House is less than 48 hours away.  Brian Kelly talked to the media Thursday about the week of practice and his final preparations. Video and notes from Kelly’s presser below.

  • Injury updates: DaVaris Daniels is a full go this weekend after suffering a slight groin injury against Temple.  Will Mahone is a go this week after being out last week.  Malik Zaire is out again this week after his bout with mono.  Luke Massa is the #3 quarterback again this weekend with Zaire out.
  • Of the freshmen Notre Dame play, Kelly said he talked to them about the atmosphere and they won’t hesitate to play them.
  • Kelly still wouldn’t name a starter at place kicker.  It sounded like Brindza is the guy, but Kelly wouldn’t commit to his top kicker.
  • Rashad Kinlaw and Will Cronin were the scout team quarterbacks again this week – Kinlaw more so because of his athletic ability in terms of helping the defense prepare for the athleticism of Devin Gardner.
  • Both Greg Bryant and Tarean Folston can do all of the jobs that would be needed of them.  Kelly said they aren’t finished products by any stretch of the imagination, but they can do everything they need to in terms of protections, route running, etc.
  • The coaches started to see the increase in explosiveness in TJ Jones in the spring and especially over the summer.  Kelly also said that in year four they added a speed element to their conditioning/weight training program.  They hadn’t added it in the past because they were more concerned with bulking strength over the first few years of being at Notre Dame.
  • Kelly said that Notre Dame is going to “go up there swinging” this weekend.  One might read into that that Notre Dame will be aggressive (maybe passing?) out of the gate.
  • Kelly said he was surprised with the number of targeting ejections from week one of the college football season.
  • When asked about the difference in this game than the one two years ago for Tommy Rees, Kelly said that two years ago Rees was operating more on instinct whereas now he is much more comfortable and proactive with knowing what to do before it happens.  Kelly said he expects to see a more mature quarterback who does  a better job protecting the football than the one we all saw two years ago in the Big House.

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