Desmond Ridder and #7 Cincinnati are making their first trip to Notre Dame Stadium (Cincinnati made one trip to Notre Dame in 1900 before Notre Dame Stadium existed). The Bearcat quarterback is talking a big game ahead of his first trip to the House that Rockne built. Ridder had a bold prediction when speaking to the media on Tuesday.
Ridder told WLWT TV’s Brandon Saho that after Cincinnati OC Mike Denbrock, a former Notre Dame assistant, told him Notre Dame Stadium would be loud on Saturday, he didn’t think it would be loud long.
Well, file this under something that is harmless but will be brought up many times this week and will undoubtedly be thrown back at Ridder if Marcus Freeman’s defense does anything close to him what they did to Wisconsin’s Graham Mertz last week. Mertz turned the ball over five times, including two pick-6es in the final three minutes of the game.
Cincinnati comes into Notre Dame this weekend with a higher ranking than the Irish and as slight favorites. They are apparently also coming in with quite a bit of confidence. In Ridder’s only contest against a power-five program this year, Ridder completed 55.6% of his passes for 210 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT.
Here’s hoping that the Notre Dame secondary that feasted off of Mertz last week does the same this weekend with Ridder and sends the home crowd into a frenzy.
I’m never sure how valuable bulletin board material is in a game. At least when it comes to ND going back to the Weis years, it hasn’t seemed to help or hurt the Irish that I can recall.
Still, if I were a player, I’d probably save the talk for after the game. No point in taking needless chances. I’m glad usually the Irish players keep that kind of talk to a minimum.
It’s less disrespect as it is confidence. Cincy has had two prelim games and a week off for even more preparation vs. ND coming off a physical, energized fourth quarter at Soldier Field. It can play both ways: Cincy essentially preparing for this game for a month with their focus and energy at a peak, or ND benefiting from the intensity and focus it took to win all four games.
Will Freeman’s knowledge of Cincy’s players benefit ND as much as Fickell’s understanding of Freeman’s D’ schemes ?
The fourth quarter will likely determine the outcome, and who converts more chunk plays on the day on O’, D’, or special teams will win. It’s up to NDs crowd to generate enough noise to turn this game into home field advantage and disrupt Cincy’s O’ despite any “bulletin board” material.
They weren’t exactly world beaters against Miami and Murray