Archive for the ‘Hawaii’ Category

The Last Score

January 9, 2009

Armando Allen puts a spectacular ending to a mediocre 2008. I’ve watched it like, 30 times.

The Hawai’i Bowl Hangover…It’s 2009?

January 1, 2009

I know what you’re thinking. Why bother, right? The game is over a week old, it’s been discussed to the max, and I didn’t even bother to post a Bagpipe Monday or wish all of you a Happy New Year. By the way- Happy New Year. I suppose I could just walk away from this post, but I feel that this game was too important and was dismissed by the main stream media as just “another bowl game”.

It wasn’t just another bowl game and it deserved a little more attention before the New Years Bowls and BCS Bowls started. I’m not going to throw out a bunch of stats in this post or write too much about particular plays (because I’m positive that you already know these things by heart) but I will write some shit that I need to say- if only to just put it on the record.

Jimmy Clausen is the shit. Get over it. Clausen was just a true sophomore this year. Jimmy was plagued with the same tag as another former Irish quarterback in Ron Paulus in where they both came in as a life-altering quarterback that should win a Heisman while playing at Notre Dame. These expectations are overwhelming- but they are expected as the Notre Dame QB. The difference is that Jimmy has been expected to turn the program around and catapult it back into a national power overnight.

Clausen certainly has his flaws and they are pointed out on a regular basis by flamers and talking heads alike. He had a tendency to lock on to a WR and his decision making under duress has been suspect. But, when you are running for your life behind a rabbit fence instead of being protected by a brick wall- you have to to get rid of the ball. Sometimes that means knowing where you are going to throw the ball before it is snapped and also trying to force a great play when your running game is bested by a group of lingerie models.

In this game, Clausen was perfect. He had incompletions? All I saw were a few passes that were dropped. Clausen was 22 of 26 for 401 yards and 5 touchdowns with 0 interceptions and he didn’t attempt a pass after the 7 minute mark in the third quarter (that stat was too good to not mention). It is quite apparent that Clausen is a different QB than Quinn. Clausen is a lot more brash and cocky as he plays well, and almost an isolationist when things aren’t quite going his way. Quinn was poised and a vocal leader in almost any situation. It will be interesting to see how Jimmy evolves as a leader on the field in 2009 as I am certain that he will continue to improve as a passer. Did you see those throws? Even when he didn’t have to put the ball on the money because the defender was burnt, he hit the receiver in stride. The TD pass to Tate at the end of the half was insane. Jimmy Clausen is insane. Hmm- ICP. Insane Clausen Posse (T-shirts will be available soon).

You stay awesome Golden Tate. Those were the words of The Subway Alumni Show- and how true they are. Tate smashed a few records of his own in the bowl game as he racked up 177 yards and three touchdowns while averaging almost 25 yards a reception. As bad as he toasted the Warrior secondary, and as good as Clausen’s throws were- he has another player to thank… Michael Floyd. Floyd had a less than average day catching the ball, and in fact, he had the least productive day statistically than any other player on the Irish roster that caught a football- 2 receptions for 17 yards. But the difference of having Floyd on the field as opposed to him on the sideline with a knee brace is one of epic proportions. Even Tate had to admit that Floyd helped draw coverage away from him and helped open up the passing game. These two players will enter the 2009 season as one of the best WR tandems in college football- if not the best. They will draw all kinds of coverages and looks from opposing defenses, and not only will they keep producing because of their playmaking abilities to go and get the ball, but they will open the rest of the offense up for players such as Allen, Rudolph, and three guys that will see their first action on the field in Shaq Evans, John Goodman, and Deion Walker. You stay awesome Golden Tate.

I want what ESPN is smoking. Or for that matter, what the main stream media is toking as well. First, Irish fans were blessed to have Andre Ware and Dave Pasch announce the game. They may of thought themselves to be comedians covering a football game, but the joke was on them most of the time. Forget the fact that they were butchering names on a regular basis as we should be used to it with Tom Hammond and Pat Hayden calling the Notre Dame home games, but the way they tried to entertain us was almost unbearable- even if you were as drunk as I was for the game. The Golden Shower is a classic moment and it is even funnier as they were not trying to be funny but clever. They waited until after the series was over and came back from a commercial break. How they thought that was a good idea is astounding. The Christmas names were laughable only because of how eager they were to use them after a couple of weeks of waiting.

As if the game announcing wasn’t bad enough, the commentary by Corso and most of the other talking heads at ESPN was criminal. After most of them picked Notre Dame to lose to Hawaii due to the Warriors being faster and more athletic, they took the blowout win that Notre Dame had and turned it into a big fucking joke. It’s not like the Irish left Hawaii with another bowl loss or even a close win- they fucking demolished the Warriors. Fucking demolished them. With the young roster that ND has this year, for them to end this ridiculous bowl losing streak and put themselves in a good position to have a great season in 2009. I wasn’t looking for them to crown Notre Dame as a national title contender in 2009, but for them to treat it like a joke is just another line of jokes that has been coming from that network. FYI- In 2001, USC went to the Las Vegas Bowl and lost to Utah. They then proceeded to go to 7 BCS games while winning an AP title in 2003 and a BCS title in 2004. I’m just saying.

Mike Anello for Heisman. Did you see how average the kickoff coverage team was without Mike Anello. Notre Dame ended the year ranked #1 in kickoff coverage and with an injured Anello on the sideline for the Hawai’i Bowl, they allowed more yardage per attempt than in any other game this year. It is unbelievable how much Anello means to that unit and how good of shape they are in next year with Anello scheduled to return.

Speaking of special teams, Amando Allen finally broke a kickoff return for a touchdown, 96 yards. Not only have Irish fans been waiting for Allen to return a kickoff, but anyone. Notre Dame hasn’t done that since Vontez Duff returned a kickoff for TD against Navy in 2002. It was almost just another blown chance for this unit as Allen stumbled right before he blew past the kicker. It should also be noted that Allen caught two passes for 59 yards and a touchdown as well.

It should not be forgotten that Golden Tate not only had a monster day receiving, but he also had a punt return for touchdown called back for a roughing the kicker penalty. It was a remarkable play that could of gave ND 56 points and maybe it would have thrusted Tate into All-American status in 2009. It didn’t count, but it was fun to watch.

I’m tired of regurgitating week old news and ideas. I might as well end this thing with a bullet list of quick thoughts and a few nuggets.

  • The team played with a lot of passion and determination. Did you see Grimes getting fired up and getting in the faces of the Hawai’i defenders? Where was that these past 4 years?
  • The running game was still dreadful, but it was effective as it loosened up the defense. that is all we can really ask for with this offensive line. Hughes looked very powerful and productive when he ran downhill. Coaches take note.
  • I didn’t say anything about the defense yet, but they played very strong. The 8 sacks that ND had put Hawai’i on the top of the list for most sacks given up in a single year… passing ND from 2007.
  • Ethan Johnson and Darius Flemming were figured to be big contributors for this game, and they produced like veterans.

That’s it. I’m too tired and too hungover to continue. I will have a lot of stuff on the site about recruiting and about the roster and depth chart from now until the start of Spring practice. The number of posts may decrease slightly as I have returned to the hell known as work, and I am getting ready to be a first time father in February, but i assure you that the content will still be palpable… somewhat.

Happy New Year !

Sergio Brown is pretty pumped about the game, and the future in 2009. Brian Smith is just amazed.

Merry Christmas

December 25, 2008
Merry Christmas to all!

And if you somehow missed last nights game, here are a few highlights…

Sports Videos, News, Blogs

A Golden Shower

December 25, 2008

I can’t believe porn is now acceptable on basic cable. ESPN must be desperate for ratings.

The Hawai’i Bowl: Hawai’i. December 24, 2008

December 23, 2008

Welcome to the Hawai’i Bowl Anti-Preview for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the Hawai’i Warriors. (Whatever happened to the Rainbows?) It’s going to be deep into Christmas Eve for the mainlanders by the time the game kicks off at 8 pm EST, and Irish fans are looking for a big present from the team as they look to end a 9 game 15 year bowl win drought.

Hawai’i won’t be looking to give this gift away and will in fact, try and regift what has been given to the Irish in the recent past– another bowl loss. So Notre Dame can not come into Hawai’i like a bunch of fucking tourists, they have to walk into Aloha Stadium like a bunch of pissed off pirates looking to destroy the native sons of the island.

Hawai’i. The Warriors finished the season with a 7-6 record and were rewarded with yet another Hawai’i Bowl berth (their 5th in 7 years). Their most impressive victory was against then #22, Fresno State. But, the game that everyone is talking about is the Cincinnati game where Hawai’i was up on the #13 Bearcats until collapsing in the fourth quarter to lose the game 29-24. Hawai’i did lose to 3-9 Utah State, but the Irish lost to 3-9 Syracuse… so whatever.

What should you be drinking? Rum. Lots and lots of rum. Since the economy is still in shambles and you spent your last dollar on a Christmas gift for the Secret Santa gift exchange at work, make sure you go with the ole’ reliable… Captain Morgan. You drank it in high school, you chugged it in college, and now that you are all grown up- you still can’t get enough of it and mix it with everything you drink as you curse all of those around you. Whew.

You can do just about anything with the Captain at your side. Here are a few short recipe’s to get you started:
  • Captain’s Booty: 3 oz. CM & 3-6 oz. Ginger Ale
  • Shark’s Nipple: 1/4 part CM, 1/4 part Mountain Dew, 1/2 part Cranberry Juice, & 3 ice cubes.
  • Captain’s Code: 1 oz. CM & 8 oz. Red Bull
  • Subway Domer Crack: 1/2 part CM & 1/2 part Apple juice or Apple cider

There are many other mixes to use with the Captain… and I suggest you try them all.

What should you be eating? Pirates ate like shit. I urge you to not eat like a pirate, unless you want scurvy or some sort of intestinal disease. Eat like the natives, but I suggest that you stay away from the poi unless you like cream of wheat and/or grits. (The Subway Domer KILLS grits). There is another way to enjoy the sacred Taro plant instead of mashing it up into poi… Lau lau.

Lau lau is a dish that takes any type of meat and wraps it with Taro leaves and is steamed. Here is a recipe to try:

•1 lb boneless pork or beef
•1 lb salted butterfish – soaked or salmon may be substituted
•1 lb boneless chicken
•Hawaiian Salt
•frozen taro leaves – thawed and drained
•taro leaves
•liquid smoke (optional)
Preparation:

This dish can be prepared using equal amounts of beef, chicken, fish and pork. I recommend using at least one meat along with the chicken and fish.
Cut meat and chicken into 1 inch chunks.
Rinse butterfish well, remove skin and cut into 1 inch chunks.
Cut and discard the stems from the taro leaves. Wash leaves. Do not dry.

In a large bowl, mix fish, chicken and meat with liquid smoke (if desired).
Take a piece of each main ingredient and wrap all three together in several taro leaves. This is called your laulau.
Place each laulau in the center of a taro leaf and wrap it. Use a second ti leaf to wrap it around the opposite direction.
You should have what looks like a little package. Secure with string.

The completed packets should be steamed, covered for several hours. They can also be cooked over a grill if kept well moist. Lay 3 to 4 taro leaves in the pan. Add half of the luau (taro) leaves. Arrange meat mixture evenly on luau leaves. Put remaining luau and ti leaves on top. Cover pan tightly with foil. Bake in oven at 350 degrees for 3 hours.

Of course, it doesn’t matter what you are eating if you are watching this…

What should you be wearing? Just like the Navy game, I implore you to dress the part. Throw away those Hawaiian shirts, grass skirts, and leis and grab yourself a hook, eye patch, and wooden leg. And for you lady friend?
Shiver me timbers!

What freshman will have the biggest impact? This has become an easy answer, because it is so obvious. Michael Floyd. Floyd is Notre Dame’s biggest threat on offense and he makes everyone else better. While Floyd was out for the Syracuse and USC games, the offense looked like it jumped in a Doc Brown Dolorian and went back to 2007. They looked awful to say the least. There is little doubt that this was because Floyd was out. Hawai’i is ranked 43rd in pass defense efficiency in 1-A. They just don’t have the personnel to cover both Tate and Floyd, and because Floyd runs such very good routes, I look for him to have a monster game against the Warriors, and even if he doesn’t have a huge “stat” game, somebody will. That’s why Floyd will make the biggest impact- that’s why Notre Dame will be able to move the ball. That’s why Floyd is probably the MVP of the Irish offense this year.

What offensive player needs to step it up? It would be easy and correct if I said Jimmy Clausen. As Jimmy has struggled, people point directly at the most visible face of the offense. This is inaccurate though. Clausen needs help, just as all good quarterbacks do to move the ball. The offensive line? All of them? Well, most of the offensive woes can be attributed to poor pass protection and uncanny ability to be worked over by inferior defensive lines. I’m sure they are capable of stepping up and doing the task against Hawai’i, but I think Armando Allen is the player that has to rise to the occasion. The question is if he is healthy enough to do so. If he is, Allen provides Clausen not only with a very good dump off option that can move the sticks and keep drives alive, but also a running back that can explode at the line of scrimmage and get 4 or 5 yards at a time. Allen may never be the game breaker that Irish fans were hoping for, but he is becoming more and more like Darius Walker. And I’ll take that.

What defensive player needs to step it up? David Bruton, what the hell happened? Bruton has to step it up against a team that likes to spread it out and chuck the rock. Bruton has had chance after chance to have more interceptions than what he ended up with this year, but he kept dropping one sure interception after another. The last TD that Syracuse scored to eventually win the game was on Bruton as he had his hips in the wrong direction as the WR came off of a cut. That was after Hammond and Hayden were talking about “NFL scouts drooling all over David Bruton.” As much as any player on the defensive side of the ball, Bruton can change the outcome of a game. He has that knack of being in the middle of the sction, we just need him to attack that action and put the Irish in good position to win the game. I think Bruton can do this, and i believe that he will as well. His last game as a member of the Fighting irish may turnout to be his most memorable. That’s what we need.

What special teams player needs to step it up? With Mike Anello out with a broken leg, I was going to go with his gunner partner David Bruton, but then I really started thinking about it for a few moments and it comes down to the central figure of special teams… the field goal kicker Brandon Walker. Yes, we need good snaps and good holds but we need Brandon to keep improving as he has over the season. Notre Dame has had 2 games against Hawai’i in the past and both of those were in Hawai’i and both were close games. Close games come down to extra points and field goals. Brandon Walker has to be money.

Who’s gonna win? Despite an obvious talent advantage on paper for Notre Dame, they will face stiff competition against the Warriors. This is the Warrior’s home field and they are looking forward to playing the high profile Fighting Irish. I think the time has come and the tide will turn for the Fighting Irish and the bowl streak. the streak dies and the Irish impress in what is a no win situation as far as the national media is concerned. Call me a homer, but I’ll take the IRISH 44-17 in a pull away victory in the fourth quarter.