How is Coach Kelly progressing in his professed goal of making the Fighting Irish bigger? Answers here!
05/13/2013 Two-minute drill
20 short points on things of interest to Irish football fans!
05/06/2013 Gunner Kiel's departure and the talent gap
Catching up on some long overdue pieces!
03/13/2013 Two-minute drill
20 short points on Notre Dame, the Combine, and other issues of interest to Irish fans!
Was the second half against Alabama OK? Coach Kelly seems to think so. What does the evidence suggest?
02/21/2013 A record-setting Alabama offensive line?
Notre Dame's defensive front seven got pushed around by Alabama's offensive line. There may be no shame in that. Here's why.
02/17/2013 Warm-weather states again dominate
There's a reason why the Alabamas of the world are winning all the college-football national championships. For that reason, see inside!
02/16/2013 Two-minute drill
22 quick points with a Notre Dame slant on National Signing Day and the NFL Combine
02/11/2013 Almost a perfect class
The highest-rated Notre Dame recruiting class in five years was finalized on February 6th. Let's look at it!
01/18/2013 We're in good shape
Say what you want about Brian Kelly's loyalty, but he's got the roster deep, balanced, and without holes as we head into 2013. Details within.
01/13/2013 Two-minute drill
20 short points on the Brian Kelly fiasco, recruiting, and future opponents
01/10/2013 The sun will rise again, maybe even higher!
Despite the pain of Monday night's loss, there's reason for optimism in Notre Dame's football future and its national-title hopes. See why.
01/09/2013 Still miles to go
A frank assessment of where Notre Dame football is right now
01/07/2013 Talking football
For those who want to do nothing else until 8:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, when all we'll want to do is watch!
01/06/2013 Playing the odds
Gamblers don't think much of Notre Dame's chances, but here's why those bettors might be wrong!
01/05/2013 Isn't this interesting?
How have SEC teams fared in bowl games? Let's take a look.
01/03/2013 Show time
01/01/2013 Two-minute drill
20 short points as we warm up for the BCS National Championship game!
12/29/2012 How good is Alabama?
How does Notre Dame's opponent in the BCS National Championship game compare to some of college-football's all-time great teams? Some comparisons inside.
12/17/2012 How well did they predict?
Time to rate the rating services. We'll use the freshman All-American team to see if those high-school ratings matter.
12/13/2012 The best the Irish faced in 2012
Who played the best against Notre Dame in 2012? Here's one person's opinion.
12/12/2012 No reason to panic
Alabama ran the ball well against Georgia. Will the Crimson Tide fare as well against the Irish? Consider this...
12/11/2012 Two-minute drill
21 short points on football, college football, and Notre Dame football
12/10/2012 He had the numbers
Manti Te'o didn't win the Heisman, but Irish fans really can't complain about the guy who did! It was a reasonable choice.
12/07/2012 A fair fight
The betting line suggests Alabama easy as Sunday morning. I'm not so sure.
12/6/2012 Too big to ignore
Developments last Saturday will require a response. What and why? See inside!
12/4/2012 Putting things in perspective
Based on performance against a common opponent, Michigan, is it hopeless against Alabama on January 7th? Maybe not. Here's why.
Despite its location 700 miles north, Notre Dame will fight Alabama with plenty of warm-weather players!
11/29/2012 What might have been
We probably were closer in 2010 than we realized. A quarterback's decision made all the difference.
Have we been able to find the diamonds in the rough or just thorns there? We summarize the findings in this the fifth and final installment in the series.
How did we do with our three- and four-star recruits? Did we find the ones who were better than advertised?
Did we recruit the right five- and four-star prospects? Answers inside in today's third installment
How have we done in recruiting top-100 prospects? Have they panned out? Do they explain our won-loss frustrations? Answers in this second of a series12/27/2011 Tracking Notre Dame football talent from high-school ratings to the pros
Why hasn't the won-loss record in the last 12 to 18 years met expectations? Today's post is a first in a series that attempts to find out
"For the year to date in the first quarter, the Irish have outscored their opponents by 14 points and have run 38 more offensive plays."
When the game was still on the line, the Notre Dame quarterback was 15 of 30 passing attempts (50%) for 153 yards and an interception that was returned for a Stanford touchdown."
"Six times in the first three games we have completed third-down passes that killed drives because they were thrown short of the first-down marker."
"We are now 1-6 in our last seven games, 0-6 in our last six close games, and 4-8 in our last 12 close games."
"...the average rating of Notre Dame's 2010 opponents was 52nd."
"In chronological order, the four scoring drives lasted 3:41, 2:14, 0:12, and 0:34, respectively."
"Against Notre Dame, Robinson rushed 28 times and threw 40 passes, meaning that he was the key figure in 68, or 84%, of Michigan's 81 offensive plays."
"Of Michigan's 84 offensive plays, he ran or passed on 51, or 61%, of them, generating 81%, or all but 90, of Michigan's 473 yards of total offense."
"Notre Dame held Purdue to one touchdown, 102 net yards rushing, and 322 total yards. In doing so the Irish accumulated four sacks, three quarterback hurries, five tackles for lost yardage, and two interceptions."
"On average the Irish needed 31.0 offensive plays to score a touchdown. Last year for the season, Notre Dame on average needed 19.3 offensive plays to score a touchdown; the Cincinnati Bearcats, 12.6."
"With five true freshmen and sophomores starting and 14 true freshmen and sophomores on the two-deep roster, we seem awfully young. Are we?
The statistics say that Coach Kelly won with shock and awe in the first half rather than with dominance and superior energy in the fourth quarter."
"No amount of practice-field instruction on the part of a position coach can make up for the failure to identify and recruit a future All-American like Kuechly. "
"Coach Brian Kelly continues to satisfy needs systematically and relentlessly."
"If my life depended on a pass rush this year, I would line up Mike Ragone and Kyle Rudolph as defensive ends in a four-man front."
"Like it or not, the next eight months on the field and in recruiting will determine Brian Kelly's fate at Notre Dame."
"How could NFL scouts forget a wide receiver who in high school was his team's captain twice and MVP three times? Easy. That was in tennis!"
"But that...does not explain how 13 picks in the NFL draft of 2010 can grow up in Notre Dame's back yard and none play for the Irish."
"Of the 46 who were drafted, 17 were drafted in the first round..."
"Samson needed his hair. Nate Newton and Chris Stewart may need their weight."
"...70% of eligible five-star prospects were selected..."
"Of the 255 players chosen, some 175, or 69%, came from one of 18 warm-weather states..."
"I can't see how the decision to appeal the sanctions helps USC's recruiting for February, 2011."
"So its share of college-football players is twice its share of population. Not too shabby."
"Colleges disproportionately and, if you are a Notre Dame fan, disconcertingly get their football recruits from 18 warm-weather states..."
"You build good teams 12 months a year, but you win national championships in February!"
"For the years 2006 through 2009, Florida State had the same great coach and the same great recruiting effort, but lady luck caught up with it. The players were just not as good as expected."
"Some targeted prospects hesitating about committing? Expected. Go out and find 40 more, every bit as good. Time and Kelly wait for no man."
"Ryan Grant has been a better every-down back in the NFL than Reggie Bush. Tell me who would have predicted that!"
"But there are so many two- and three-star prospects--some 2,150 each year--that no coach or staff has the time and insight to cull the great from the ordinary."
"Each of the four most-recent national champions enjoyed a five-year average-recruiting ranking in the top 10."
"Each of the four most-recent national champions had a no. 1 or no. 2 ranking twice in the five years immediately preceding the national championship."
"To be effective, Big Ten expansion must be large, pre-emptive, and eastward. Without Maryland, it is not pre-emptive."
"An SEC expansion that included Texas and Oklahoma would be very difficult for the Big Ten and the Pac-10 to counter."
"West Texas A&M had two players chosen in the April, 2010, NFL draft. Notre Dame had two players chosen from its 28-man recruiting class of February, 2006."
Lesson: Top-30 recruits are 17 times more likely to become first-round draft picks.
"Charlie Weis's 28-man 'killer' recruiting class of February, 2006, has produced two sixth-round draft choices (Eric Olsen and Sam Young). That's it."
"With the 2010 NFL draft now over, Charlie Weis is still waiting for one of the players that he recruited to be drafted in the first round by the NFL."
"The trade-offs in these cases are body types vs. instincts."
"What do Arrelious Benn, Jeff Byers, A.J. Edds, Everson Griffen, Micah Johnson, Erik Lorig, Gerald McCoy, Tony Moeaki, Dace Richardson, and Major Wright have in common?"
"All ten...plays created opportunities for Weis's team. The difference was in the execution. They didn't work when the players were not as good."
"...5-star recruits, who through self-assessment, opportunity, risk-aversion, and vanity can and often do wait unitl the final days of recruiting to commit to a school."
"You are on record as saying that this trend is cyclical. I think it is secular."
"These disparate results indicate a talent deficit in cold-weather schools, including the Big Ten."
"The moral: Don't be a step slow at the high levels of football!"
"Some stopgap class!"
"Twenty of the twenty-two starting positions could be manned by former 4- or 5-star recruits."
"USC came in...with five 5-star and one 4-star running backs."
"Tebow's big, but they're all big!"
"Recruit 'em and move 'em! That's the policy for tight ends!"
"...making two of the year's worst calls on the same drive. That must be an officiating record!"
"...but for sheer, unbridled unfairness, this one takes the cake."
"...no wide receiver at the combine was stronger and faster than Tate."
"Notre Dame football players of 2009 may have had some shortcomings, but strength apparently was not one of them."
"McCarthy...pound for pound, was one of the strongest guys at the combine."