Archive for November, 2008

Southern Cal. November 29, 2008

November 29, 2008

Welcome to the last Anti-Preview for the Fighting Irish in this regular season. It has been a very up and down year for the Irish, and they are looking to salvage a season with an improbable victory against our greatest rival. With most of the talk this week being about Coach Weis and his future with the program, the team is probably looking forward to getting away from South Bend and all of those type of distractions.

Speaking of distractions, I apologize to all of you who enjoy reading these Anti-Previews. This is going to be a very short and sweet version. I have had more on my plate than usual these past few days and I just don’t have it in me for a full dose. Excuses, excuses- whatever.

Southern Cal. These guys are pretty fucking good and have only got better as the season has progressed. The defense is littered with future first round picks for the NFL and the offense has been extremely efficient. Plus, they have this for a distraction. I hate them.

What should you be drinking? I don’t know. The real answer is “Yes. A lot.” You better get wasted and you should have plenty of time to do it with a prime time game. Prime Time. Go for the shamrocks, and try not to end up as butch as this chick:

What should you be eating? They are out in LA, so anything is going to be possible. But instead of going the fine dining route, get something quick and easy. In-N-Out Burger. Or, maybe something as simple as a nice watermelon:

What should I be wearing? Black. This might be a funeral for a few different reasons. But it could be enjoyable with the following company.

What freshman will have the biggest impact? I wish to Christ I could say Floyd, but we all know that ain’t happening. Darius Flemming. He has been playing very well for the defense as of late. The Irish will need to create some type of pass rush and Flemming could use his quickness to his advantage.

What offensive player needs to step it up? I’m calling you out. The ENTIRE offensive line. SC is talking a lot of shit, and they are looking to fucking destroy Clausen. So the entire line has to pull up their skirts and get to work . Sam Young, Trevor Robinson, Chris Stewart, Dan Wenger, Eric Olsen, and Mike Turkovich. All of these guys have to step up and perform. If the Irish could somehow keep Clausen on his feet and maintain some kind of consistency in the ground game, than the Irish will be able to have a legitimate shot.

What defensive player needs to step it up? Steve Quinn. With Brian Smith out and a huge void on the defensive side, look for Quinn to see a majority of the snaps over Toryan Smith. Smith is a step slower than Quinn and with the speed the Irish will see against the Trojans. Quinn has the savvy to make an impact, but will he be able to keep up? The entire defensive unit will be going against an onslaught from a USC offense that will mix up the play calling and use multiple personnel groups. Sanchez must be on his ass to have any chance.. Quinn might be able to get there and do it.

What special teams player needs to step it up? Brandon Walker. Continue the consistency and nail those 45 yard and less field goals. Notre Dame could find itself in the middle of the fight if they are getting the job done on both sides, the field goal team could put them over the edge- either way.

Is there a rivalry trophy at stake? As a matter of fact, yes. (I wouldn’t have asked otherwise) Here is an excerpt from an old Subway Domer post on all of ND’s rivalry trophy games

The Jeweled Shillelagh is the hardware given to the
winner of the annual contest of the Trojans and The Fighting Irish. Legend
states that Howard Hughes’ pilot brought this Gaelic Warclub, made of blackthorn
oak, over from Ireland in 1952. The Notre Dame Alumni Club of Los Angeles
created the award. The winner of the contest is awarded the trophy with a new
medallion to mark the victor. ND has emerald shamrocks while USC has ruby
encrusted Trojan heads. Although the trophy was created in 1952, the entire
series is recorded back to 1926. There have been 5 ties and those games are
represented with a combo medallion. The original shillelagh was retired after
the 1995 season. There was simply no more room for anymore shamrocks or heads.
It now resides at Notre Dame because the Irish won more games up to that point.
(We still do even after losses for 5 straight seasons with a 42-31-5 mark).
There is a new trophy that is a little longer than the original. It was
purchased by Jim Gillis, a former baseball player for ND and USC. It is the same
kind of oak and hails from the County Leitrim in Ireland. It was introduced in
1996.

So who’s going to win? Most people will say that this game is a sure bet. Notre Dame is a 30 point underdog and has virtually no chance to win this game or even have the delusional thought of keeping this game close. What the hell. Irish win 29-27. Somehow, someway.

Happy Thanksgiving!

November 27, 2008
I only wish that the Lions would be banned from Thanksgining.

Blogpoll Top 25 Week 13, Not 14 As Previously Stated

November 26, 2008

The rest of the poll can be found at CBS Sports along with the usual commentary from Brian.

Something For Everybody

November 26, 2008

You may, or may not, have noticed a new widget on the site. It’s a video widget called FanDome. There is also a website that this widget comes from called Irish FanDome. It is a very well put together site that has oodles of videos and information on Notre Dame and it’s mother site covers most of the other NCAA 1-A schools as well.

I encourage all of you to check them out, and if you are a blogger I suggest you use them as a video service as well.

That’s all. Check out two of the most recent additions to their video library for Notre Dame:

Blogpoll Final Ballot Week 14

November 26, 2008
Rank Team Delta
1 Alabama 1
2 Oklahoma 3
3 Florida
4 Texas
5 Southern Cal 1
6 Utah 1
7 Texas Tech 6
8 Boise State
9 Penn State
10 Oklahoma State
11 Ball State
12 Ohio State
13 TCU 2
14 Cincinnati 2
15 Missouri 2
16 Oregon State 3
17 Georgia 3
18 Oregon 5
19 Georgia Tech 7
20 Boston College 5
21 Florida State 5
22 Michigan State 9
23 Brigham Young 5
24 Northwestern 2
25 Mississippi 1

Dropped Out: Pittsburgh (#14), Maryland (#21), North Carolina (#22), Miami (Florida) (#24).
#1 – #5
  • Alabama moves up to the top spot after a week of eating cheeseburgers and doing nothing.
  • Oklahoma looks like the real deal (always do in mid-November) after an ass-whooping on Texas Tech.
  • Florida beats up on The Citadel, while Texas gets jumped. Texas beat Oklahoma, but once Oklahoma beat TT and put us in a 3 way circle jerk- I take the team that looks the best right now and rank them higher.
  • Southern Cal moves up another spot while plotting to somehow keep Charlie Weis as the coach of ND while still kicking the shit out of them. Dicks.

#6 – #10

  • Utah climbs another spot and inches closer to the top 5.
  • Texas Tech lands softly at #7 for its overall body of work and not further down because of a straight up ass pounding that it just took.
  • Boise State, Penn State, and Oklahoma State all stay firmly planted in their top 10 status from the week prior.

#11 – #15

  • Ball State and Ohio State stay at their #11 and #12 spots respectively. Yes. I have Ball State ranked ahead of Ohio State. BSU is undefeated while OSU has two losses. Deal with it. Win your games.
  • TCU starts off the 2 spot movers due to some dropouts at #13. Good defense.
  • Cincinnati may be off to the Orange Bowl. Let me say that again. Cincinnati may be off to the Orange Bowl after a victory over Pitt. A win over Syracuse next week would give Cincy its first Big East Football Championship and its first BCS appearance.
  • Missouri creeps up closer back to the top ten. It awaits an opponent for the Big 12 title game with a Rivalry Game versus Kansas this week.

#16 – #20

  • Oregon State is proving that it’s fluke victory over USc has some validation and might even win the Pac-10 with a victory this week. Solid team that I probably have underranked. That Penn State game was terrible.
  • Georgia inches closer to respectability in my eyes. A showdown with in state rival Georgia Tech could put them in good shape for a BCS berth. But wasn’t this team blown out twice this year? #17 is a good fit.
  • Oregon looks to play major spoiler this week in the Civil War against OSU. The Ducks have been playing abovetheir pay grade. Another good job by Mike Belloti.
  • Georgia Tech is a big mover here at #19 coming out of the “other votes” category and climbing 7 spots. That Miami beatdown was fun to watch. Style points for a non-game that was a great game to watch.
  • Boston College keeps winning in spite of itself.

#21 – #25

  • Florida State was incorrectly unranked last week as well. They beat a good Maryland team and voila- #21.
  • Michigan State drops a bunch to #22 after the beatdown Penn State gave them. They are still Top 25 worthy as long as they still have Ringer.
  • BYU drops quite a bit after getting handled by Utah. A far cry from the BCS crasher that everyone hoped they would be.
  • Northwestern shows back up in the top 25.
  • WELCOME OLE MISS! Their first moment in my top 25 must feel special. Or, they are still riding the high of beating Florida weeks ago. Doesn’t matter. The team is legit, I just wish that they had one less loss.

Don’t Worry, I Gotcha

November 25, 2008

In my last “Hangover” post, I promised you a list. I’m very good with making lists of things- whatever they are. I am, however, a huge procrastinator and have a hard time staying motivated.

This isn’t the case this time.

I have started the lists and I am making pretty good headway with them. Most of the things will not be new if you read Subway Domer regularly. Some are.

I will be releasing these lists the week after the Southern Cal game. Publishing them now would make sense considering the sharks circling the waters, but the regular season is not over. I/we will have to wait until then.

BTW- I’m sure most of you have heard that Notre Dame has a good chance of not going to the Sun Bowl. They can’t get into a Big East bowl with a 6-6 record if all of the slots can be filled by the conference. They will be thrown into a pool of other 6-6 teams and most likely will fill in for a PAC-10, SEC, or Big 12 slot as these conferences may not fill their quota. These “other” bowls include:

  • Las Vegas Bowl VS. Mountain West
  • Poinsettia Bowl VS. Mountain West
  • Hawaii Bowl VS. WAC
  • Independence Bowl VS. Big12 / SEC
  • PapaJohns.com Bowl VS. Big East
  • Texas Bowl VS. Conference USA

There are probably a few others, but these are the ones that stood out to me. All of these would be for a fill in for the 3 conferences that I mentioned.

I don’t give a shit what Dick Vitale says about going to a lesser bowl (he thinks we should stay home). It’s basketball season and he should stick with that. I realize he has ties to ND, but his opinion of the program as it pertains to a bowl game means very little to me. We need to go. I am looking deeper into my comparison of the 2004 team. They sucked. They went to the Insight Bowl and got waxed by Oregon State. But, they got some very valuable practice time that I am sure helped them to an amazing season in 2005. So, without question- if we are invited we HAVE TO GO. I don’t care where, and I don’t care against who. With a huge amount of starters and key players coming back in 2008, the practice and bowl experience can be a vital thing for a program that will be looking to get back on the right track in 2008.

Enough. this was supposed to be just a quick update and a funny video. Here’s your video, but think of yourself as a fan who is close to driving off of a cliff after this last loss and chooses not to watch the U$C game. You just got the phone call after the game from your buddies:

Stats For Kids

November 25, 2008

I saw a list of stats on an Irish message board from a poster with the handle: Norm91. He was trying to show how young this team really is this year. So I took it and turned it into a spreadsheet using my minimal spreadsheet skills. For your enjoyment:

Irish Blogger Gathering: I Almost Got Too Cute With This Thing- Edition

November 25, 2008

I almost did it. I almost published what would have been a very original, very funny, very entertaining round of questions with a West Wing Theme. I deleted it. The only thing that was original this year for Notre Dame was that we beat Michigan by our largest margin ever (the worst Michigan team in history). Nothing was really humorous other than thinking that ND might be vastly improved from 2007 (we are improved- Michael Floyd plays for ND). And the only thing that is entertaining is that we may not go to a bowl game at 6-6 (The Sun bowl can’t take us if all of the Big East teams have a better record or something- International Bowl here we come!).

Instead I have to ask a series of very serious questions, because the program is in question across the board. I’m sorry. It feels as if all of the laughter in the world is gone and no songs can be heard. Quick! Give me a Prozac.

1. Regardless of what you may have heard and what may happen, what do you think should be the fate of Charlie Weis? Please give an explanation in detail along with a possible replacement if you said… FIRED. No Urban Meyer bullshit here. He’s not coming. Get over it.

I don’t want to go through another coaching search. I just don’t think I could handle another set of fucked ups. Give Weis another year. If the team isn’t producing next year, than cut the cord. I can’t be a Weis apologist anymore. There isn’t enough to back him up, but who do we get from the crowd this year? I’ve heard a lot of names, and quite frankly- either there is no chance or I just don’t see the fit. One name we should all remember is, Charlie Strong.

2. Recruiting. Colin Cowherd has been murdering the recruiting services and Notre Dame. He thinks that the recruiting services rank Irish recruits higher than what they should be because of a marketing plan. Everyone else on the outside is falling in line with this thought. What are your opinions? Please explain and provide a solution.

I think Cowherd is making some very fair statements right now about Notre Dame football and about the University. I think he thinks that their is some type of bias in the recruiting rankings, because he doesn’t follow recruiting that closely. The kids are determined as a 4 and 5 star (or lesser) player before they commit anywhere and the star ranking rarely changes drastically. The best indication of a top flight recruit is his offer list. Who wants him. If ND is beating USC, Florida, Ohio State and others out for a kid (which they are) than how are these rankings biased? When was the last time you saw a kid lose a star for committing to Florida after they decommitted from ND? These services are not as accurate as they or even Cowherd would have you believe. They are very good indicators, but certainly not the tell all. Why then are ND’s top recruits not getting drafted in the NFL? Oh, that’s right. Those were Ty’s guys. Next question.

3. I made a comparison in a poorly written post about this team mirroring the 2004 team. I generally don’t like doing comparisons to other years, but I felt it was valid. What is your take? Is the 2008 version of ND like the 2004 team, and do you think the 2009 team could have similar results to the team in 2005?

I would like to think so if you look at one position. Quarterback. Quinn was a sophomore in 2004, and obviously Jimmy is one this year. Quinn walked into the 2005 season as a 2 year starter and so will Clausen. Look, I could keep going on and on about the makeup of these two teams but every year is different. I do see the similarities, and I hope that the same type of results are produced- but I’m not holding my breath.

4. Is Michael Floyd the Notre Dame team MVP? Why? If not, who then?

I see a lot of people are putting Golden Tate on the top of the list. I can’t argue against him, but I can argue for Floyd. This offense is stagnant without Floyd. San Diego State, Navy, and Syracuse were all games that Floyd saw none or very little action. Those were not great offensive games. Floyd has fewer minutes than Tate and Tate just caught up to the Frosh in stats. But, you can honestly say that they need and feed off of each other. Cheap way out- Floyd & Tate = Co-MVP’s.

5. What is Notre Dame’s biggest problem schematically and mentally?

Schematically they are a bunch of pansies when it comes to the running game on both sides of the ball. The Orange converted a 3rd and 7 on a simple off tackle play, while we lose 3 yards on a 4 hole lead with our jumbo package. Awful. If ND could ever get a consistent running game, then I think you would see a much improved offense. I’m not talking Holtz- but Weis did it with Walker. This offensive line has to take off the skirts.

Mentally. Whatever they are thinking when they have a lead, they need to do the opposite. Become sharks that go fucking crazy when blood is in the water. But for the players to do that, their head coach needs to do so as well. Isn’t Weis from New Jersey? Pussy.

6. Notre Dame is a 30 point underdog to U$C. It’s safe to say that none of us thought that ND would ever be that big of an underdog in this rivalry game. Your thoughts and please include a prediction for the game.

I never thought ND would be this big of underdogs to anyone ever. We were 20 point favorites to a team at home that we lost to, and now we are 30 point underdogs on the road. 50 POINT SWING! Fuck it. Irish find their balls and win this thing while I’m on an acid trip 19-17. Kiss my ass Pete.

The IBG members:
Her Loyal Sons Provides Words
OC Domer Responds

Domer Law Is Heard
The Brawling Hibernian Throws His Answers With A Right Hook
UHND Stands Tall

The Syracuse Hangover

November 24, 2008
This will not be a long post. This will not contain a lot of insight or analysis of the game. (Not like these ever do anyways). Other people have done the work for me. The links are as follows:

As you can see, this week is not about the Syracuse game when it comes to the X’s and O’s. It isn’t about U$C- yet. It’s about Charlie Weis. The doubters are out and the haters are in an orgy of Weis slamming.

I’m fence sitting. Why? Because I will stick to my guns and state that Weis will be back in 2009. Do I think it’s the right decision. Not really, but Notre Dame has been handcuffed since Kevin White gave Weis that huge contract extension.

This season is tremendously close to resembling the 2004 season that buried Ty Willingham. In that season a sophomore Brady Quinn took the team to a 6-5 regular season and lost to Oregon State in the Insight Bowl. Remember what happened in 2005? Can the Fighting Irish get that fight back in them for two more games this season? Probably not. The team is emotionally flat, and after a loss like this, how do they combat the Trojans?

I have many opinions about Weis, this years team, and the future of the program. But those opinions are a smorgasbord of a fucked up mess in my head. I can’t explain it. I want to, but I just can’t do right now.

I’m not sure this is a hangover post, I sound like I’m still drunk. I’m good with lists. I’ll go make one and get back to you soon. (Jesus, this post was awful)

This guy just beat Notre Dame. Greggers.

Blogpoll Draft Ballot, Week 13

November 24, 2008
Rank Team Delta
1 Alabama 1
2 Oklahoma 3
3 Florida
4 Texas
5 Southern Cal 1
6 Utah 1
7 Texas Tech 6
8 Boise State
9 Penn State
10 Oklahoma State
11 Ball State
12 Ohio State
13 TCU 2
14 Cincinnati 2
15 Missouri 2
16 Oregon State 3
17 Georgia 3
18 Oregon 5
19 Georgia Tech 7
20 Boston College 5
21 Florida State 5
22 Michigan State 9
23 Brigham Young 5
24 Northwestern 2
25 Mississippi 1

Dropped Out: Pittsburgh (#14), Maryland (#21), North Carolina (#22), Miami (Florida) (#24).
Any suggestions will be considered. Let your voice be known.