Archive for the ‘Quotes’ Category

Freshman Are Special People

August 3, 2007

With the first practice of the season coming in just a few days, the mention of the new season is causing an overabundance of excitement all across ND Nation. One of the primary topics every year is “What freshmen will play right away?”. This year is already no different in that aspect. Every message board on the net has more than enough threads debating this very subject matter. The one difference this year however, is that there are very few returning starters on both sides of the ball. This makes for an interesting preseason camp. The starting lineups we saw in the spring may differ before it is all said and done.

We can debate and speculate all we want about the depth chart for the offense and defense. There is certainly a wealth of talent coming in this year for us to do so. Will Clausen start? What about Kamara? But generally speaking over the years, the biggest overall impact a freshman class can make is on special teams. This is where I believe the frosh are going to see significant playing time, and hopefully contribute to some great plays and victories. Who? Where?

  • Brandon Walker K– With the lack of success the kicking game had last year, Walker has an excellent chance to take over the duty if he performs well during practice. This probably isn’t too much of a surprise to anyone that saw last years debacle. His main competition will be Ryan Burkhart, who could never usurp Carl Gioia in 2006. The shortcomings of last years field goal unit, were instrumental in the decisions that Weis made regarding play calling (especially on 4th down) once The Irish got within the opponents 30 yard line. Weis may be a risk taker, but he was a risk taker on steroids last year with no confidence in the kickers. Look for Walker to take the job and pull double duty next year after Price is gone Ala Fitzpatrick.
  • Armando Allen KR– The Irish lacked explosion last year on this unit. Allen can bring a million tons of TNT to this position. With David Grimes starting at WR, this could probably open up the spot for the speedy Allen. Look for Allen to become a staple on this unit as the Irish have a very inexperienced offense that will need quality field position to loosen up.
  • Golden Tate KR– Speaking of returning kicks… Look for Tate to see some time back there as well. George West is a probable starter at WR and that may also affect his PT retuning kicks. Tate is very quick and athletic and the possible duo of him and Allen sounds very enticing.
  • Steve Paskorz, Harrison Smith, and Aaron Nagel KICKOFF– Steve Paskorz might get arrested this year for assault. He looks like an animal after hitting the weight room harder than Latimer on “The Program”. He is also pretty fleet footed and could prove to be a very good hitter/gunner for this unit. Fumbles are what we are looking for from Steve. Fumbles and body bags. Aaron Nagel can be seen in the same light. Though not as big a specimen as Paskorz, he is quicker and is a very good tackler who impressed all the coaches at the Army All-American game. I love me some safeties. Safeties are excellent players for the kickoff team as they are fast and tackle very well with some authority. Harrison Smith fits this mold. He may have a lot of competition though with guys like Jashaad Gaines, Sergio Brown, and Leonard Gordon looking for playing time as well. But, I think he could do very well , given the chance.

That’s it? Well it is only the first week of August. Time will tell what freshman will do what soon enough. I will already concur that I feel Clausen will start at some point this season (or at least some very significant PT), Kamara should see a lot of action at WR, Hughes and Allen could wind up in the rotation at RB, and Kerry Neal may see the field soon at OLB and on special teams. This is a list of what I believe are the probables going into preseason camp.

Please keep in mind that these are only freshman, and may have some very wide eyes. This is the case for a lot future stars around the country. One of our greatest players ever at ND, Tim Brown, even fell into this sea of wonder his freshman year during the 1984 season opener versus Purdue in Indianapolis as told by him in Eric Hansen’s Stadium Stories: Notre Dame Fighting Irish

“But when [ coach] Gerry Faust is giving his big
speech in the locker room, he ends it with, ‘Tim Brown, I want you to return the
opening kickoff.’ I was just shaking in my pants, man.”

So shaken was Brown that he forgot his helmet in
the locker room and had to run back to get it. That was the last vivid memory of
the opening moments of his collegiate football career.

“I can honestly say I don’t I don’t remember what
happened,” he said with a chuckle. “All I know is they squib kicked the ball to
me. I remember getting over to it and getting my hands on it. And I saw a hole
and started running. It was weird, because I’m like, ‘Why isn’t anybody trying
to tackle me?’ At some point. I must have dropped the ball. I must have freaked
out, went into shock or something, because I have no recollection of fumbling
the ball. I know I didn’t get hit. I finally turned around, and it was like,
‘What happened?’ What a way to start your career.”

Hopefully, someone relays this story to Armando. Tell him, “If you fumble, make sure you win the Heisman your senior year.”

10,000 Lakes Are Not Enough To Ease The Pain Of Being Inferior To Weis

June 13, 2007

Recently it was announced that Notre Dame would not play The Golden Gophers in the future. This was a decision made by Kevin White (ND A.D.), because it did not fit in with his scheduling plan.
O.K. fair enough. But apparently it does not rub well with new Minnesota Head Coach Tim Brewster. The following is a post found on NDNation.com. It may or may not be true… but how does one make this stuff up?
So I just moved into a new apartment, and it so happens that Tim Brewster, the new U of MN coach, lives in the same place. Last week there was a “meet and greet” for the coach, and he gave his spiel about how great things would be for the MN Gophers, how they were changing the program around, and how excited they were to be moving into a new stadium in ’09. He repeatedly made the statement “we need to keep Minnesota players in Minnesota” and told the crowd if anybody was from Cretin-Derham, to spread that message. I went up to him afterwards and told him congrats and good luck, but that I was from ND and we might be recruiting the same Minnesota players. In what I can only describe as bizarre, Brewster basically went off on me, saying how sick he was Notre Dame and our arrogance, pompous attitudes, and fear of playing Minnesota in their new stadium. When I told him it was the collective opinion of ND fans that it was our athletic director who wouldn’t budge the schedule, he went off on Weis of all people, called him a “slob, a disgrace to Notre Dame, with his dirty mouth and appearance” or something similar. He said Notre Dame could never recruit another Minnesota player until Weis was under 350 pounds. This whole time I was kind of in awe that another D1 coach could be so tactless, especially around somebody who he had never met. I should have asked him if had a Notre Dame opt out clause in his contract, like Holtz. Oh well. But now I really wish we would play them in for their first game in the new stadium.
Truly, jaw dropping. Now imagine what he says to recruits about Weis and the Irish. I hope Floyd has earplugs. High schools kids should not be subjected to what is clearly an elementary mind.
Tim Brewster…you are a dork.