Tyler Buchner is a real-life video game character. Four games in and the 2019 season has been nothing short of a medical warning for the faint of heart. In many ways, the Irish record is indicative of what many predicted it would be at this point. 3-1 with a loss at Georgia, and on paper what appears to be comfortable wins against Louisville and Virginia.
We can sit here, and quote Bill Parcells “ you are what your record says you are,” and most Irish fans would be comfortable moving forward knowing that the Irish are looking like a team that will notch a third straight ten-win season, but some of us have seen something different.
As many ND fans probably did, I saw the young and inexperienced Defense being the worrisome unit in the pre-season and that returning starter at QB as well as four among the offensive line would allow the 2019 team to lean on its scoring ability while it’s young linebackers figured things out.
Boy, was that wrong.
Thus far, the Irish offense has looked relatively sloppy, and it’s been the D bailing out the offense much like it was last year. Notre Dame’s defensive performance kept them in the Georgia game and won them the recent bout with Virginia.
Notre Dame’s offensive struggles seem to boil down to the same things that have been discussed over the years. The Irish don’t ever seem to have a dynamic gamechanger they can go to when the offense isn’t working.
Clemson last year when their offense was working against the offense went to Justyn Ross, a 5-star receiver commit, who then proceeded to tear the Irish secondary apart.
Two weeks ago, when Georgia was struggling, they went to D’Andre Swift and Jake Fromm, and they both made big plays when the dawgs needed it.
Notre Dame doesn’t have anyone like that. The Irish have plenty of good players, including their quarterback. They don’t have a great one.
The Irish coaching staff to their credit has noticed this issue and began to battle with the Alabamas and the Clemsons for elite athletes like Chris Tyree and Jordan Johnson.
One particular Irish commit has stood above the rest, and he plays the position where someone can make the most impact.
2021 #NotreDame QB commit Tyler Bucher.
Passing: 83-of-125 for 1,595 yards, 19 touchdowns and 3 interceptions
Rushing: 50 carries, 572 yards and 9 touchdowns https://t.co/uz894eY36i
— Matt Freeman (@mattfreemanISD) October 1, 2019
In March, Notre Dame received a pledge from 2021 Quarterback Tyler Buchner out of La Jolla, California. Buchner was an interesting recruit at the time because he was coming off a knee injury that caused him to miss his entire sophomore season.
Typically an injury will cease all recruitment of an athlete until it’s determined that injury won’t affect his future. The ceiling was so high for Buchner that teams like Alabama, Georgia, and Michigan stayed in pursuit anyway, but it was the Irish that eventually broke through to Buchner.
As exciting as it was to land a talent like Buchner, there was the injury concern. These teams have limited scholarships, and can’t afford to use on a kid that can never be what he was supposed to be post-injury
Well, I’m here to say that I think we can put those worries to rest in regards to Tyler Buchner. That’s not saying he will never get hurt again, but one look at his numbers for this year should erase all doubt that he’s fully recovered from his previous one.
Through 5 games, Buchner has put up stats that the average video game player would be proud of. He has thrown for over 1500 yards, with 19 TDs compared to just 3 INTs. He has a QB rating of 139.
Buchner’s passing stats alone should have Irish fans salivating at his playmaking potential, but he does more than pass. Buchner has also run for nearly 600 yards and added 9 TDs on the ground.
In an early September game against Mater Dei Catholic, Buchner put up a stat line that seems only plausible on NCAA 14’. The Junior Quarterback accounted for 9 TDs on 465 yards passing and 295 yards rushing.
The stats for this kid are merely breathtaking. There have been some questions as to the level of competition Buchner is facing, but stats like that are impressive versus anyone.
The Irish 2019 campaign will have to rely on a lot of good players, and they certainly can be successful with that. But in the future, players like Buchner give Irish fans hope that in tough situations, we might have a playmaker to go to.