Duranko’s Digest: What did we see in Pittsbrugh?

Louis Nix - Notre Dame @ Pitt
Notre Dame Fighting Irish nose tackle Louis Nix (1) walks to the sideline in the third quarter against the Pittsburgh Panthers at Heinz Field. Pitt won 28-21. (Photo: Matt Cashore / USA TODAY Sports)

Five HUGE mistakes, each self-inflicted, compounded to help Notre Dame lose to a game, gritty Pitt Panther squad 28-21. The Irish offense is not yet eploxsive enough to overcome multiple errors, and, in Heinz Field, for the third time this season, the “chickens came home to roost.” The 2012 Irish did not beat themselves, but this team has. The loss ended the Life Suport for Notre Dames barely palpitating BCS dreams.


(We will not discuss here Tom Savage’s “entrapment” of Stephon Tuitt’s alleged “targeting” penalty and disqualification. That was Zebra-inflicted, not self-inflicted. Zebras happen. For the data-hungry, the Panthers had rushed for 17 yards before the zebras Sacco and Vanzetti’d Tuitt.)

Senior Captain T. J. Jones, with the score tied at 7 and the Irish at the Pitt 40 slanted in and caught a pass from Tommy Rees, then broke to the middle and the end zone. He was indecisive regarding which hand he would use to secure the ball, and when hit, by Pitt, he fumbled on the 6. It was a freshman mistake. It is not in the job description of a senior captain. Pitt was on the ropes at the time.

With the Irish leading 21-14 in the third quarter, the Panthers had the ball on their 37. Savage dropped back and hit a crossing Devin Street on what ought have been a 20 yard gain. Matthias Farley slid off Street rather than tackling him and a 20 yard play became a 63 yard, tying touchdown. More about Farley below.


Senior quarterback Tommy Rees, with the game tied at 21, on the tenth play of a drive which started at the Irish 46, faced a Second and Goal at the Pitt 4. 7 seemed likely, 3, a sure thing. Rees threw into the end zone but the receiver was not open and, worse, a Pitt safety whom Rees did not see swooped in and intercepted the ball ending the drive. It was a freshman mistake, not in the job description of a senior quarterback.

On Pitt’s ensuing possession, they had moved to near midfield, and when Savage dropped to pass, Prince Shembo went FrankStamsian on Savage, stripping the ball and causing a fumble. The Irish, led by Sheldon Day, did NOT play to the echo of the whistle, and ignored the gift horse of the football lying on the ground. They merely looked in its mouth and rather than scooping it up and advancing it some from the Pitt 45 or even scoring allowed the Panthers to recover the ball and punt it out of harm’s way. Maddening!

On the ensuing Notre Dame drive, the Irish faced a 2nd and ten at their own 24, with the score still tied. Rees threw an even worse ball than the red zone interception, it was returned to the ND 5 and Pitt pushed in the go-ahead touchdown that made the final 28-21.

The first three possessions of the fourth quarter. A triad of disaster.


A gentle reminder about Matthias Farley. After showing such promise and great tackling ability as a frosh, he has been a part of three awful plays in 2013. Not to rub salt, but against Michigan, the Irish trailed 3-0 and the Wolverines had the ball on their own 39 yard line. Gardner threw to Gallon for a 15 yard gain, but it turned into a 61 yard touchdown which stretched the lead to 10-0. Farley overran the play.

Plenty of Storylines Await Notre Dame Offense This Off-Season

Against OU, the Irish had fought, and I mean FOUGHT, back from 14-0 and 21-7 deficits and were trailing by 27-21. OU had the ball on their 46 yard line and had a 3rd and 3. Bell threw a short pass to Shepard, who eluded Jarrett Grace, but Farley was out of position and when he tried to recover, Shepard blew past him and when OU converted the 2 point play, the Irish were done at 35-21. The word Safety means you keep the defense “safe.”

Now, the lesson of kaizen is to fix the problem, not the blame. You change your preexisting structures to get ahead of the problem. We have some talent at safety, including Shumate, Hardy and MAX REDFIELD. But the defensive “system” requires the safeties to make a lot of adjustments and experienced players do it better. Well, which is the tail and which is the dog? The troika of Diaco, Elliott and Cooks ought consider a redesign, and reassignment. It is not that we are devoid of athletes at safety; rather it is that the best athletes are not manning our last line of defense. Agains, fix the PROBLEM, not the BLAME.

Okay, enough looking back. Let’s look forward. We are three games away from having Golson back, and the quarterbacks who will back him up, then fight to succeed him, will have mobility and escapability, which adds 30% to your offensive repertoire. We’re very close to weaponizing our whole offense. The Wide Receivers and Tight Ends are there. The Running Backs are closer than you think. Kelly and Alford are giving up on none of the four.

Atkinson has come back after many buried him. And they’re going to give Carlisle the opportunity that his potential and Spring and pre-Fall showed. And Bryant will be a factor. Our offensive line is on the verge of true greatness, a year or two away. It could happen, even with youth, in 2014. When Elmer and Stanley line up together, they are the prototypes. We should be explosive next year. That will compensate for some errors.

And the team must return to the smarter, minimal-error football of 2012

The team will welcome the Saturday off, both to heal, and to wash out the foul taste of the loss to Pitt. Kelly will have to raise them back up, but he’s been here before.

Newcomers of the Match:

Will Fuller – seems to have passed Corey Robinson and perhaps Chris Brown. A playmaker. Bright future.

James Onwualu – first career catch, but he’s been a willing blocker and an eager special teams player.

What will we see on Senior Day?

This Senior class is special. They were recruited by a losing team, not a winning team. But they listened, they worked, they competed, they lifted, and they played with true grit. Notre Dame was a soft football team under the previouos regime. But this group led the way back to a Notre Dame team that now plays tough all the time, showing the first glimpse against USC  in 2010. In 2012 these seniors led a team that was less artful than intense and tough, in gritty wins over Purdue, Michigan, Stanford, Pitt and BYU. In 2013, there was more of the same against Michigan State, Arizona State and USC.

Notre Dame Quartet Made Themselves Money in Mobile This Week

The class of 2014 (proforma’ing the redshirts) has 35 wins going into their Senior Day. In the last two years they have lost to National Champ Bama in Miami, to Michigan in Ann Arbor, and a top Ten OU team in South Bend, and then Saturday’s hot mess against Pitt. The classes following will have more wins in their four years, but to a non-trivial extent they will be standing on the shoulders of the class of 2014. The future here is bright, but that Golden light would be more distant except for the work of these stalwarts.  Each one, and I mean EACH ONE deserves a chapter, but we will highlight just a few:

Zach Martin – arguably the first block in the foundation, inserted as a freshman starter at the crucial left tackle position, and he never looked back-or beaten. Stayed around to play on the same line with lil’ brother Nick. Zach held on until the offensive line pipeline could be filled.

T.J.Jones – forced into action as a freshman, survived the early death of his dad Andre Jones, and developed into a smooth polished receiver by his senior year. An eager worker, who accepted the bit to serve as punt returner. He made Tommy Rees a better quarterback. A case study in player development.

Danny Spond-an underrated prospect stolen from under the nose of Gary Patterson at TCU, who showed what the prototype of a cat linebacker looked like. Marvelous pass coverage skills, who stayed on the field in passing downs in 2012 when the secondary was, well, not penniless, but nickless and dimeless. His health was of more value than his senior year, but morphed into a coach, the one-on-one mentor of Jaylon Smith. If you question Spond’s coaching ability, just ask Jaylon.

Tommy Rees – “The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.” Tommy Rees arrived as Rivals’ 31s best quarterback of 2010 and the 13th best player in Illinois. He was expected to just be a warmup act while Dayne Crist recovered. He is not Joe Montana, he is not Tom Clements, he is not Everett Golson, he is not Brady Quinn. But he sure as heck is a nice Tommy Rees. He became the surprise starter as a frosh when Crist went out against Tulsa. He became the starter in 2011 when Crist, who had one final chance to convince the coaching staff that he was up to the starting role, parafinned against USF. He lost the starting job to Everett Golson in Spring 2012, went out and had a few pops, got arrested and suspended, yet returned and was a Mariano Rivera-esque reliever in 2012. Golson paraffined academically, and Rees became the starter.

Javon McKinley Returning for 5th Year Would be Great Notre Dame Story

“From each according to his abilities to each according to his needs.”  Was he Kelly’s first choice? Was he the fans first choice? Well, and you can look this up, Lou Holtz used to say that his wife Beth often reminded Lou that he wasn’t her first choice either! Tommy Rees gave his all: what more can we ask? Before we leave this controversial personality, ask yourself two questions:

(1) What would Notre Dame’s 2013 record be if Golson were the quarterback?

(2) If, after losing the QB job in the Spring of 2012 to Golson, Rees had left to, say, set passing records at Augustana or some D-III school, what would Notre Dame’s record have been in 2012 and in 2013?

Louis Nix – not to the manor born in Jacksonville, he hung in during the coaching change and would not be swayed. More corpulent than conditioned as a frosh, he redshirted, then split snaps with an underrated, but easily, and unfortunately forgotten Sean Cwynar as a soph. His ebullience, his joie-de-vivre could not be supressed, and he adopted his “Irish Chocolate” persona. In football with its seriousness and military metaphors, humor is the sine qua non of emotional and mental balance and Louis provided it. Got his touchdown in the Spring.. “What though the odds be great or small.” It’s not just a football thing it’s a story of human achievement emphasizing what can happen when the yin of a motivated individual meets the yang of the Notre Dame millieu, given context with a wondrous support system. When Louis ambles out to embrace Mama Nix at midfield in the pre-game introductions, feel good about Louis, feel good about Mama Nix and feel good about God, Country and Notre Dame.

What will we see from BYU?

(1) A team that rebounded from losses to Utah and Virginia in the first three games, and has garnered impressive wins over Texas, Georgia Tech, Utah State and Boise.

(2) Tayson Hill has improved, but he is no Johnny Manziel. More big than quick, more fast than slippery, he has not seen anything like what our defense will bring. A year away from being a dangerous passer, he needs the Cougar rushing attack to flourish before he has enough room to pass.

(3) Last year, playing the Cougars the week after the emotional overtime win against Stanford, we still outgained them 389 yards to 243 yards, with our rushing attack getting 270 yards to the Cougars 66 yards. This year we play them AFTER a week off. Know this, we are a lot more physical than they are.

(4) An Irish team that will benefit from not playing on 11/16. They guys like Nix, Day, and Watt, who played hurt against Pitt will be a little more healthy. Schwenke and Williams back would be nice.

(5) A nice test to see if the coaches and team can suck it up and play with vigor. They should. It’s the Notre Dame way.


Go Irish!


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  1. bruce johnson 6 years ago

    insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results-albert einstein,

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    1. Ron Burgundy 6 years ago

      Kind of like posting the same thing over and over……….

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  2. C-Dog 6 years ago

    And while Duranko is sleeping it off, can Frankie v please fix the advertising on the site? The pop up ads are killing my browsers. explorer, Firefox, and safari all crash on the ads.

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    1. SteelFanRob 6 years ago

      Yes, I’ve complained about the same thing over and over. I’m glad someone else brought this up. I thought it was my laptop. But all the computers I get on crash on this site. Please do something about this.

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  3. bruce johnson 6 years ago

    insaity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results-albert einstein

    lets go get chip kelly?

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    1. Ron Burgundy 6 years ago

      I think he’s busy.

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  4. Mike Palumbo 6 years ago

    I have been an occasional visitor to this site. This season I have had the good fortune and pleasure of reading a few of Pete Duranko’s articles. These articles are vastly superior to those found on most of the other ND football sites. Thank you for your informed, balanced comments.

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    1. SteelFanRob 6 years ago

      “duranko” is not the late Pete Duranko, the former ND gridiron great. I’m assuming “duranko” picked this screen-name as a tribute to Pete, RIP.

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  5. Jerry Seppanen 6 years ago

    Kelly is not building a program. We will be 7-5 again except one great
    year. That is not building a program. We are averaging 5 yard a carry
    against Pitt and he quits running in the 2nd half. Where was Folsum? Our best
    runner was barely used. Do I need to go on?

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    1. fxm 6 years ago

      I know he has some issues, but GA III averages 6.2 yards per carry. I can’t imagine what his number would look like at Stanford or Wisconsin.

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  6. HJ Prendergast 6 years ago

    Damn, every post, and Duranko,s post were right on. I got on some guy about lack of leadership before the season started, wish I could apologize to him right now..

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  7. bj 6 years ago

    best of the lot

    1. Nick Saban, Alabama. He’s won four BCS championships (2003, ’09, ’11, ’12) over his last eight seasons in the college ranks and turned Alabama, and LSU before it, into a recruiting machine. Saban’s teams’ dominance in the past two title games against previously undefeated foes LSU and Notre Dame is a testament to his preparation skills, and his program’s infrastructure — relying on an enormous support staff to maximize efficiency — has become a model for the rest of the sport.
    2. Urban Meyer, Ohio State. While the brash and often outspoken 48-year-old certainly has his share of critics, it’s hard to argue with his résumé. Meyer has gone 116-23 (.828) at four different schools, posting undefeated seasons at both Utah (2004) and Ohio State (2012) to go with a pair of BCS titles at Florida (2006 and ’08). While initially viewed as a spread-offense guru, he is now renowned for his unique ability to charm and connect with both recruits and players, something that’s produced consistent success.
    3. Chris Petersen, Boise State. Now entering his eighth season in charge of the Broncos, Petersen has gone 84-8 to rack up an insane .913 winning percentage. Last year’s team — the first in the post-Kellen Moore era — was one of the biggest rebuilding projects he’s had, and it still finished 11-2. Petersen has no equal when it comes to player development. Boise never sniffs the top of the recruiting rankings and yet has produced seven first- or second-round NFL draft picks under his watch.
    4. Gary Patterson, TCU. Here’s what I wrote about Patterson in 2007: “Does anyone get less credit for running a consistently successful program than this guy?” And that was before two BCS bids, an undefeated 2010 campaign and an impressive transition to the Big 12. While the Horned Frogs still have plenty to prove following a 7-6 debut in their new league, Patterson has long since demonstrated that he’s one of the top defensive minds the sport has seen over the past decade.
    5. Bill Snyder, Kansas State. I know I said this list isn’t based on career achievement, but it’s hard not to bring up Snyder’s ’90s miracle work in Manhattan — particularly now that he has engineered a second surprising turnaround. The Wildcats, 39-45 from 2004-10 (three of those seasons under Ron Prince), went a combined 21-5 in Snyder’s third and fourth years back at the helm, including capturing last year’s Big 12 title. There’s no magic formula or trademark strategy at Kansas State. Snyder simply wins.
    6. Les Miles, LSU. While the Mad Hatter’s diction and game management can be bewildering at times, his eight-year tenure in Baton Rouge has been nothing short of extraordinary. The Tigers have won at least 10 games in all but two seasons, going 47-17 in SEC play, and reached two BCS championship games, winning one (2007). Miles’ program is a fixture near the top of the annual recruiting rankings and churns out a virtual assembly line of prized NFL prospects.
    7. Kevin Sumlin, Texas A&M. I have a feeling he’ll be even higher on this list in a couple of years. Sumlin is the consummate CEO coach, imparting his vision (an up-tempo offense, attacking defense) to his staff and hiring excellent coordinators to execute it. Like Meyer, his charisma and confidence rub off on players. After leading both Houston (in 2011) and A&M (last year) to their best seasons in decades, Sumlin is now recruiting at a previously unattainable level in Aggieland.
    8. Bob Stoops, Oklahoma. This ranking may seem a bit low for a guy who has won eight Big 12 titles and compiled an .801 winning percentage, but the Sooners have shown some cracks since reaching the 2008 BCS championship game — especially over the past two seasons (though they still won 10 games in both 2011 and ’12). Stoops came up as a defensive coach, but his program has long ranked among the nation’s most powerful and innovative on offense.
    9. Bobby Petrino, Western Kentucky. He’s back after a year spent in exile, and while Petrino isn’t likely to rank among anyone’s top coaches in the charm or ethics departments, his offensive game-planning and play-calling aptitude is hard to dispute. In eight seasons as a college head coach, he has produced four top-12 teams and done so at two schools — Louisville and Arkansas — that were hardly fixtures in elite territory before his tenure. Best of luck, future Sun Belt and Conference USA opponents.
    10. Art Briles, Baylor. Briles doesn’t get nearly the national recognition he deserves, particularly considering just how astonishing Baylor’s rise would have seemed just four years ago. The Bears failed to post a winning record in their first 14 seasons in the Big 12; they’ve gone 25-14 in the three seasons since, twice knocking off top-five teams, producing a Heisman winner and maintaining one of the nation’s most explosive offenses even after RGIII’s departure.

    Read More: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/college-football/news/20130708/best-worst-college-football-coaches/#ixzz2kS2c1gCX

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    1. Jack 6 years ago


      Let me respond to the top ten coaches you have quoted and whether they would work at ND.

      1. Saban would never work wants to much control and the trustees would never let that happen.

      2. Urban Meyer couldn’t get his criminals and murders in and would not want to be under those restrictions.

      3. Chris Peterson has to prepare for two hard games a year and wouldn’t fare well if he played a real schedule.

      4. Gary Patterson is tearing it up in the Big 12.

      5. Bill Snyder fits where he is at and would not translate to ND. His team this year is not leading the Big 12.

      6. Mad Hatter is a horrible game coach. He can recruit and he can put atheletes on the field but gets out coached time and time again by teams with inferior talent.

      7. Kevin Sumlin, without Johnny Manzel bailing out his shitty defense he would be a fiver hundred team. At Houston he played no one and beat a Penn State team in the mist of scandal.

      8. Bob Stoops gets his ass handed to him by the SEC in every game he faces them. We would be back to NC game last year.

      9. Bobby Petrino leaves when things get hard and can’t keep it in his pants. ND would never let him coach. He really did nothing in the SEC and was housed by teams like Alabamaa and LSU.

      10. Art Briles is an offensive genius but usually he can’t get his defense to stop anyone.

      Sports Illustrated is a bunch of hacks. Also, I want you to go back and review Saban’s numbers at LSU and MSU, they are not earth shattering.

      I want you to know that I am on the fence about Kelly. I need to see him run a team with an experience QB that fits his system. As far as the defense, I am not sure which one will show up the USC defense or the Temple defense.

      Naming the top ten coaches doesn’t mean they will translate to ND. I do reserve judgement on BK until after this season. I need to see how he reacts to this latest loss and how the team reacts under his leadership. There is no way he gets fired until his contract is up, they are still paying Weis.

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      1. Buckeye 6 years ago

        You are correct, none of those guys can coach. What about the guy at Kansas, his name escapes me, he has some impressive credentials.

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      2. Jack 6 years ago

        Buckeye I’m not saying they can’t coach I am saying the either wouldn’t work at ND or they would never want to work at ND. Their are people on that list that aren’t good coaches. Saban isa great ccoach, Urban is a good coach but looks the other way when players get in trouble.

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  8. Ron 6 years ago

    Shaz, looks like you’re getting slaughtered here. You might want to re re examine your logic again. Hahhahahhaha!!!

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    1. C-Dog 6 years ago

      Not really. What no one is pointing out properly is the other issues ND has.

      The offensive line is overrated. Lack of running game proves that out. They don’t maintain blocks long enough. Protection is suspect at times.

      The defense is a shambles this year. The CBs and Safeties have reverted to 2011 and prior play. They play way too soft and frankly look confused too often. The LBs are inconsistent. I’m not impressed. And the line has regressed, either due to lack of support, of self satisfaction.

      And against Pitt, there were times when the defense just stopped playing. On the 60 yarder that Pitt had and everyone is blaming Farley for, the pursuit gave up even before the Pitt receiver was inside the 10. Kelly essentially has the same issue this week that he had in 2011 after the USC game. The team just gave up. Why is that?

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      1. duranko 6 years ago

        you lead a rich fantasy life.

        Were you raised by people who taught you to ignore facts? Check Russell’s pursuit after Farley’s miss.

        And at what point in the four game winning streak after the 2011 USC game was it evident
        to someone with your acuity that the team just gave up?

        Go ahead, dazzle me, but this time try some facts.

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      2. Michael the Archangel 6 years ago

        I didn’t see the “team give up”. I did see them give up at least three when TR threw the INT in the end zone, and the D give up seven when they didn’t cover and advance Pitt’s fumble, and TJ giving up another seven when he was stripped of the ball inside the five, and then seven when TR’s 2nd INT gave them the ball at our five, and a missed tackle that led to a 60 plus yard score against us.

        Do the math; that’s five plays in which the offense left at least 10 points on the field, gave up seven with TR’s 2nd INT, and a missed tackle and missed fumble recovery opportunity = 14 points. Five plays that led to 31 point turnaround.

        Game, set, match.

        Beyond three TOs, 4 key mental mistakes and a huge missed tackle.

        Now, if ND doesn’t show insane effort and superior execution against BYU, then, C-Dog, your point about them “giving up” carries more water.

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      3. C-Dog 6 years ago

        Hey Duranko, you might want to avoid the cocktail induced rants and flames of you customers. Otherwise give up being affiliated with the group that controls this site.
        So I suppose you don’t remember the flap in 2011 when Kelly called out his team after the USC game? Go sober up dude.
        As for Saturday’s game. I saw more than one guy ease up as the Pitt receiver was heading down the sideline. If you disagree that’s fine. But your achoholic induced rages and flames poorly represent this site.
        Frankie v of course is more professional. Not sure what connects you to ND but hopefully it is more than tailgaters and a case of PBR.

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      4. JC 6 years ago

        Amen Michael the Archangel,

        Excellent irrefutable game facts! Thank you for the unemotional truth!

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      5. duranko 6 years ago

        good grief Cdog you are
        soo easy to bait.

        You got played, because I intentionally laid off your most absurd falsehood, the criticism about pass protection.

        You’re too predictable really. Each time you are revealed to be a liar and a manufacturer of facts, you resort to a spittle-spraying blend of accusations of alcohol and emotion and non-sequiturs.

        You emote. You neither observe nor think. You elevate your emotional reactions to a place higher than facts or reason.

        Sound familiar?

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      6. C-Dog 6 years ago

        Sounds like you are talking about yourself. Tell me what facts I’ve manufactured and tell me what lies I have created. To lie is to intentionally deceive. I have neither lied nor manufactured anything. I have made observations and expressed my opinion based on those observations.

        You have made observations and have expressed opinions.

        You remind me of someone I worked with about ten years ago. The guy would go off and insult people just like you do. Turns out he was snorting coke. Do you do drugs Duranko? It really seems like some kind of chemical guides your actions.

        You really suck compared to Frankie V.

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  9. Ray 6 years ago

    Bottom line: People can say what they want about every phase of ND’s game. When you have a QB like Rees, who might be the slowest/least mobile QB in all of college football, ND is not going to make a BCS bid. Because he is so un-athletic, decent defenses were and are able to scheme accordingly. Watch the film and watch what happens when defenses do not have to ever worry about a QB run. IT CHANGES EVERYTHING!!!!! Notre Dame can hope in future championships. QB is by far the most important position!!! ND does not have one. I laugh at fans who say Rees is effective. Future: Kelly has recruited very well at QB. The future looks very bright. In fact, Golston, under Whitfield’s expertise, is going to be incredible next year. Unathletic slow QB’s are obsolete. Notre Dame is bringing in the opposite for the future!

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  10. Rich 6 years ago

    They looked like a team uninterested in doing what needed to be done to beat Pitt. Rees was a disaster. The depleted defense was unable to stop an average offense. Throw in fumbles and the like and there you have it…
    a loss to Pitt! I honestly have to blame the coaching staff especially the fact that last weeks running sensation TF didn’t get the ball nearly enough times. How does a back run for 147 yards the week before and gets only about 6 carries the following week. Piss poor game plan, that’s how. Not that we are not aware of this but Rees is no more big time than Faust was when he was here coaching. Really tell me what good team he’s beaten this season. None that I can recall. It will be a breathe of fresh air next season when Golson or Zaire get behind center. I know the record is still ok, 7-3, but ok is not good enough at ND! I hope Forsten and Bryant get the chance to show their worth. Now that could be a dynamic duo for the Irish. Go Irish!

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  11. JC 6 years ago


    “You know…the ones we Cherish, Honor, and Revere.”

    Amazing! Blathering on and on about TR’s great stats, then advocating the notion Rees will compare someday to the likes of our Championship QB’s? Please, stop dishonoring our Championship QB’s with this obvious, intentional and exclusive-delusional-logic of yours. Rees without question is a great back-up QB, however, it is a brazen falsehood to frame Rees anything but a great-back-up QB! Rees will never be a Championship QB at Notre Dame….ever! To glorify Rees’ stats as equal to Championship QB status is obvious puerile non-sense. Show me Rees’ rushing stats equal to Tony Rice. Stats don’t win Champsionships…Champions win Championships, period! Rees will never belong to the Notre Dame Championship QB club, end of story!

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    1. Ron 6 years ago

      Thank You Sir!!!

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    2. Shazamrock 6 years ago

      All I ask is you just take a minute and compare TR QB numbers to those of other ND QB’s.

      He ranks right up there.

      And yes his rushing stats come no where near that of Tony Rice, but then Rice’s passing number do compare with that of tommy rees.

      Never said he was a champion.
      I said he was a reserve QB that got trust into the starting job.

      Just said that his numbers are worthy of some level of respect.

      Is that really so hard for everyone?

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      1. C-Dog 6 years ago

        I know what you are trying to point out. the Rees situation is not black or white. Which is what both you and I are saying.

        One thing that is of greater concern is why the QB situation is such a mess. Golson cannot have been the only decent QB for Kelly to develop. Kelly has not created satisfactory stability. The “Next Guy In” is not being executed to expectations. Too many injuries at too many positions, or otherwise too many issues to create a true next guy in scenario at ND as of today. He needs reality to match his sales pitch.

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      2. Shazamrock 6 years ago


        Your opinion is one I put the most value on around here.

        That’s because you have actually “lived” ND.

        You were on that campus, walked those grounds, and was able to look into your fellow student athletes eyes on a Monday morning following a tough game or loss.
        You could see first hand the long hours of hard work, the dedication, the pain, the team work, and the sacrifice that theses players willfully accept.
        While winning, excellence, and ND go hand in hand, there is also the humand side.
        You have seen it, I try to acknowledge it, and wish more fans took time to consider it.

        I believe that’s why you always say that you don’t blame the players.
        A level of accoutability, ok. All the blame, no way.

        You understand the side that most fans never see.

        Tommy Rees…. He’s just a College kid doing what his coaches and team are asking him to do in a tough situation, and trying to do it the best he can.

        I for one can’t fault him for that.

        He was never recruited to be the next great QB or savior of the ND football program.
        We should all know this.

        And don’t doubt for a minute that we as fans, cheered and were happy for most every one of his touchdown passes.
        Or that he found a way, immobile, and weak armed as he is, to pass for over 6,000 yards, or that he somehow, with all his faults, got the ball to his main recievers like TJ Jones, and Davaris Daniels,(who most likely will play at the next level) or to the big heavies like Niklas and Koyack, and found a way to understand and incorporate the long term importance of participation by the younger players like Chris Brown, Will Fuller, Kory Robinson, and CJ Prosise.
        He helped provide those guys with their first catches or first ND touchdowns and we cheered for all that as well.

        TR started as a freshmen… at QB… at ND.
        We should all think about that one for just a minute.

        He has always been a team player. Whether starting, coming off the bench, or in support of his team mates.
        Those are the type of players every team needs.

        And while he might not be pretty, he is tough, he is a fighter, and a battler, and Notre Dame through and Through.

        Come Nov. 23rd. When Tommy Rees stands at his stall in the locker room and puts on his ND uniform, and tightens his chin stap for the very last time at Notre Dame Stadium, walks down that narrow corridor, touches the sign at the landing that is every ND player’s creed, then runs out of that tunnel for the final time, I say he has earned our appreciation, support, and respect.

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      3. C-Dog 6 years ago

        Man, I do hope he comes with his second best game. I think he can. And then I hope the best game is out in Palo Alto. Despite everything that has happened this year, It would be wonderful to see this team pick itself up and just play like there’s not tomorrow.

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