Archive for the ‘Seamen’ Category

The Navy Hangover… I Overcame The Sea Sickness

November 18, 2008

Did you expect a different outcome? How many games in the history of Notre Dame VS. Navy ended up being a close game that the Irish somehow managed to survive in the last 15-20 years? More than we care to admit, and one less than we would have liked (2007).

Toryan Smith. If you would have asked me who the most likely surprise defensive player would be in the game this week, I would have probably listed off a list of 6 or 7 guys- and Toryan Smith would probably not be anywhere near that list. What a game from the junior linebacker from Georgia! This is what Irish fans have been hoping that Smith would do for the last few years. The Irish were struggling to keep any kind of momentum and after a blocked punt, Smith plucked the ball out of the air and ran to the endzone with a dive worthy of the excessive celebration penalty that it received. When asked about the play in the locker room, Toryan gave this fantastic quote:

“They always say act like you’ve done been there before, but I acted like I
ain’t going back.”

He played that way all game after he came in for injured starter Brian Smith early in the game. Toryan tallied up 10 tackles and helped the Irish defense stuff the Navy offense and hold them to their lowest rushing output in over 2 years. Smith did what we all knew he could do, and that was stuff the run. His weakness has always been his speed and pass coverage. I have a feeling that this second life that was granted to Toryan will be a blessing to Irish fans and his play over the next couple of weeks could effect the lineup in 2009. Just watch.

Players are in some pain. That was a hard hitting game. The Fighting Irish suffered two HUGE injuries with both Michael Floyd and Brian Smith out for the remainder of the regular season with knee sprains. After watching the play of Toryan Smith, I am at least a little optimistic that the defense will maintain its high level of play. However, with Floyd out of the lineup, the offense might struggle to come up with the big play that propelled the Irish earlier in the season. Golden Tate and Mike Floyd were a difficult tandem to stop, but with only Tate as the lone deep threat, don’t look for too many deep passes downfield. Both of these losses shouldn’t impact the Syracuse game as much as they will impact the final game of the season when the Irish travel out west to play Southern Cal. That is when the offense and defense will suffer from the lack of speed brought on by both B. Smith and Floyd.

What the hell is wrong with Jimmy? Clearly there is something wrong with Clausen. The answer is probably a little more complex than just saying that he is only a true sophomore and compare his stats to Brady Quinn’s sophomore year. I think it is a multi-headed monster that includes these statements which I believe to be fact:

  • Clausen’s ankle injury may be more severe than what is being reported. Clausen tweaked his ankle in the Washington game if I remember correctly. It is his right ankle, which is his back foot when he is throwing. After rewatching the Purdue game and the Navy game today, I see a huge difference in his throwing mechanics. Clausen’s accuracy derives from his great throwing form. This is absent. Most of his throws have been too high and his back foot may be the cause.
  • The 7 man zone coverage is killing our routes. Jimmy is throwing into double and triple coverage because in a 7 man zone, it is possible to cover each receiver with 2 or more defenders once they get past 15 yards. Teams do this because our running game is not that dangerous.
  • Clausen is simply trying to do too much. This is where the interceptions are coming from. He has to just take what is there and he failed to do so against Navy in the first half. Even the scramble is proof, when he took a huge hit instead of sliding. He is a competitor and is struggling with himself in trying to pull in the reigns.

These are only a few reasons, and by the way- he is still only a true sophomore.

The last 5 minutes. I am not going to get too in depth with the last five minutes, but I am going to defend Weis- a little bit. The Irish were sitting on the 2 yard line with their second team in the game threatening to go up 34-7. Charlie Weis did not fumble the football, Jonas gray did- a freshman. Everything else means nothing if we hold onto the ball and score a TD or even just a FG to go uo 30-7.

Clearly there was some mistakes by Weis with his fourth down decision around the 50. Clearly. But his decision to have the second team defense in after the failed attempt is not a mistake. One of the biggest problems with the 2007 team was not just that it was a young team, but they had no game experience. When you are up 27-7 with only a few minutes left- you put in your second string. BTW- the long pass that was ruled complete at the 1 (catch or no catch) was because a starter let his man get deeper than him. How does Weis move McNeil back, when Raeshon KNOWS he has too be the deepest man? The onside kicks were horrendous. Regardless of what direction the ball went after Parris batted it, I thought he had a decent shot at recovering the ball. Then Parris gets blown up on what should have been a penalty on the 2nd kick- which by the way was about as perfect as an onside kick can be. This is a coaching problem, and one that I’m sure will be addressed this week and every week after. The 4th timeout? Ask someone else. I read it was legit and Navy only used 2 up till then. Like I said, ask someone else.

Some quick hits to end this thing. Here are a few tidbits that I would normally go in depth with, but I am way too tired to keep writing:

  • The run game looked efficient. ND outrushed Navy. Let me say that again ND OUT RUSHED NAVY. Our line finally realized that Navy was giving up 50 pounds per man. The backs looked good with their cuts and vision. Yeah.
  • The offensive line STILL looks horrible on a speed rush on the outside. Young and Turk dropped the ball a few times. This may never get fixed. I did notice that TRob got beat on the outside when Young took the inside guy and TRob took the outside. Someone tell me why they do this style of pass blocking. Please?
  • Mike “The Dictator” Anello is still kicking ass on special teams. He blocked the punt that Toryan Smith returned. He also got away with a hold when he grabbed the punter’s leg and took him down after the ball was recovered. He kicks ass.
  • David Bruton is everywhere, but how many interceptions has he dropped this year? He had two more against Navy. At least he is making good plays on the ball, but will someone put some stick-em on his gloves. Please?
  • Brandon Walker is now known as ” Ca$h Money Findlay Bomb Dropper.” It’s a long name. But he has come a long way this season with his accuracy. He has a cannon for a leg and as long as he stays level -headed, he may win us a game with his leg this year.
  • The Irish are bowl eligible. Yeah.

Notre Dame VS. Navy LIVE Blog

November 15, 2008

Go Irish! Beat Navy! Seriously

November 15, 2008
From Irish Illustrated’s McStug.

Navy. November 15, 2008

November 13, 2008

I have never liked the Navy game in years past. They usually meant very, very little other than a win and and an occasional scare. That all changed last year when Navy broke the 43 game winning streak that Notre Dame held over the Midshipmen. This year the game means everything for the Irish. Notre Dame is on a 2 game losing streak and the program, and Weis in particular, have been the hot topic for sports radio and ESPN all across the country. It’s safe to say though, that if the Irish win this game, no one in the media will be backing off of Weis and Notre Dame. It’s a Catch 22.

Navy. The Midshipmen come into the game with a 6-3 record with a huge upset victory over then ranked #16 Wake Forest at Wake. The option attack is still in full swing at Navy, even after the departure of Paul Johnson. Navy has played one common opponent of the Irish in a 42-21 loss to Pitt. It’s kind of nice for Irish fans and Navy players to hear a little more about the game instead of the respect angle. It’s great and all to talk about the sacrifice’s these Academy guys make, but it is patronizing to keep talking about it during the game. These guys are football players on a team that is a consistent winner and bowl invitee. Pay attention to the game. They are.

What should you be drinking? It’s time to go all Pirate on these Midshipmen, so I suggest Peg Leg Stout from Clipper City Brewery located in Baltimore, Maryland. This is a Russian Imperial Stout, but actually drinks more like a porter. I found this review over at Beer Advocate from a poster named “Mitchster”:

$1.80 for a 12oz bottle at Jacks. Brewed with English Pale, Crystal, Chocolate
malts, and Black Barley. Hopped with Fuggles and Styrian Goldings. 8.0% ABV.
Best By notched label. Bottle Conditioned.

Pours out to a clear dark
brown. Not as black as expected, nor as thick as expected. Forms a tall fine
dark tan head with good retention and lacing. Carbonation is moderate. The aroma
is composed of molasses, prune juice, milk chocolate, distant espresso, rotting
red apples, and plums. The mouthfeel is soft and very silky. Medium bodied, but
with a very full, smooth palette that makes it feel thicker than it really is.
Almost as smooth as a nitro tap. The taste is a recap of the aroma with a nice
bittersweet edge. Decidedly American in flavor, not British as anticipated by
the ingredients. There is a faint sourness which makes me think that this beer
would not store very well. Perhaps it’s the green hoppy acidity. Well balanced.

As an imperial stout, this isn’t very representative of the style. It’s
rather mild for that, but overall, it’s an excellent, very enjoyable beer. It’s
not rich beyond compare, but it is well-balanced, smooth, easy to drink and full
flavored. I would certainly buy this one again.

What should you be eating? When I think of Baltimore and food, I immediately gravitate towards an all time favorite of the Subway Domer… Crab Cakes. You can get real Maryland Crab Cakes anywhere in the country from a place called Angelina’s of Maryland. they do an overnight service and after reading some of the reviews- I intend on doing this for the game Saturday. BTW- If you are in the Fort Wayne Indiana area, check out Dickey’s Wild Hare or Lucky’s Terrapin Tavern (both formerly known as Munchie Emporium Georgetown and Munchie Emporium Dupont respectively). They have some of the best crabcake sandwiches I have ever tasted. If you are going to the game in Baltimore, you can check out Dock of the Bay in Baltimore. Of course you can make them yourself, with a little help from this crazy broad:

Just remember this…

What should you be wearing? Be a real Pirate. Throw on the gear yourself, and grab your lady friend and have her do the same. Who cares what the weather forecast for the game is in this outfit?


What freshman will make the biggest impact (besides Floyd)? I have to go with two guys that are on the same side of the ball. Ethan Johnson and Darius Flemming. Defending the option is such a disciplined affair that sometimes the biggest contributors are guys that rarely get their name called. The defensive tackle (E.J has been playing mostly at a DT) is the first option defensively. What they do decides whether the QB hands the ball off to the FB or pulls the ball and starts working his way down the line of scrimmage. Next is the defensive end, what they do (along with a linebacker) decides if the QB cuts up or continues to move along the line. I think ND will certainly try to stretch the field with the option and force late decisions. The two freshman can be key deciders in how this develops. This will be the first game this year where ND has a huge size advantage along their defensive line as compared to the opposing teams offensive line. What Navy has is discipline and speed. The freshman also have a lot of speed, but can they use their power to overwhelm the Navy front line and disrupt the options that Navy has. Watch these two.

What offensive player needs to step it up? Jimmy Clausen. After a 4 INT game, has to come out and fire on all cylinders. The Fighting Irish offense will have a limited number of possessions because Navy runs such a time consuming and ball control offense. They are a suspect when it comes to the deep ball as it showed in their 3 losses (Ball State, Duke, and Pitt). BSU and Duke both threw for over 300 yards while Pitt had McCoy, but still managed over 250 yards in the air. The Irish throw the deep ball well when Clausen is clicking. But, the biggest test for Jimmy will be his patience and how he reacts to the safeties rolling up on his WR’s. He has to get a rhythm going with his underneath receivers such as Allen, Grimes, Rudolph, and Kamara. Clausen’s accuracy has been way off due to a couple of injuries, health overall, and poor decision making. If the Irish are going to win this game and win it by a margin that will keep the naysayers off of the programs back for at least another week, Clausen must be deadly accurate and take what the defense is giving him. Sounds simple enough.

What defensive player needs to step it up? I went with two freshman on the defensive side of the ball, now I’m going to take two more guys on the defensive side of the ball (get the hint?). David Bruton and Kyle McCarthy. The Irish don’t want these two to have big tackle numbers as they would rather the LB’s and DL make most of those, but these are two outstanding run supporters and both fly to the ball very well. The key is to hold Navy’s offense in check. they may get a few yards here and a few yards there, but ND has got to stop the big run and that comes with great safety support. Navy running back, Shun White, is averaging 8.4 YPC. He looks like a duplicate of former Irish great Julius Jones. He is fast and runs with great power. The key for Bruton and McCarthy will be to keep the lanes closed and prevent the long carries. If they can do this, and help force the plays inside, Notre Dame should be able to control the way Navy attacks our defense.

What special teams player needs to step it up? I got two players for you once again. Jonas Gray and Leonard Gordon. Against BC Gray had two penalties on kick returns and he has had two muffs this year when returning a kick ( NC & Washington). Gordon could not/ would not get out of Golden Tate’s way as Tate was returning a punt against BC. The Tate return should have went for six. C’mon guys.

Who’s gonna win? This team is in serious trouble right now and needs a big win. They have all tools to get it done Saturday, but they may not have the confidence or swagger to do it with authority. If they can restore that confidence early in the game, I think they can blow the doors off of Navy. If they struggle early, we may be in for a long afternoon. They get it done. IRISH 35 – 14. Call me crazy or super optimistic, but I think ND controls the run game against Navy and becomes efficient on offense. Notre Dame should be fired up for this game and come out wanting revenge. All I have to do is watch this clip and it puts me in the fucking stratosphere. Go Irish!

Why The Hell Not?… Episode IV A New Hope

August 21, 2008

The season is drawing closer and closer to the opening kickoff for our beloved Irish. Notre Dame stands at 8-1 and just a few votes away from being in the top 10. The Fighting Irish feel as if they are being overlooked and under ranked with only one blemish on their record. Three teams stand in their way for a BCS berth and possibly a shot at the National Title.

ND (8-1) @ Navy (5-4) 42-14 IRISH

Navy comes into this game needing only one more win to be bowl eligible. They are coming off of a much needed bye week as their starting QB Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada (or simply: Kaipo) was out for most of the game versus Temple with a hamstring injury that has bothered him since fall camp. Notre Dame and its legion of alums and fans are eagerly looking forward to this game and are ready to dish out some revenge after last season’s 3OT loss to end the 43 year losing streak by Navy.

The game was never really close. The Irish took their first three drive of the game for a TD. The first was on a 8o yard drive that ended with a 4 yard TD run from Robert Hughes. It was his 6th carry of the drive. The second TD drive was considerably shorter on both yards and plays. One play was all it took and Luke Schmidt took a screen pass out of his H-Back position with a convoy 47 yards for a TD. The third drive was after Navy slotback Shun White broke a long run, but was stripped of the ball at the Irish 22 by a hustling Gary Gray. Kyle McCarthy fell on it for the recovery. 12 plays later Michael Floyd caught a 17 yard crossing route in front of the goalline and fell back into the endzone for the score. Navy finally scored on a wicked triple reverse that put Tyree Barnes in the endzone. Notre Dame led at the half 21-7.

The Irish jumped all over the Middies in the second half to continue the onslaught. They put up two touchdowns in the third quarter (8 yard run by Aldridge and a 12 yard pass to Ragone). This put the Irish at a comfortable 35-7 lead going into the 4th. Navy scored a TD on a very well choreographed drive of 76 yards. The Irish took the ball on the kickoff and ate up the next 8 minutes of clock by running the ball and running it some more. Jonas Gray finally punched it in for the TD with about 1:19 on the clock.

MVP- Brian Smith: 18 Tackles. 5TFL. 3 Sacks. Beast

ND (9-1) VS. Syracuse (2-8) 49-0 IRISH

It was surprising that Greg Robinson lasted as long as he did. He was finally fired after Syracuse lost its 6th straight and 8th overall for the season versus UConn. They lost that game 38-0 while Zach Frazer threw for over 300 yards and 5 TD’s for the Huskies.

This was a killing. Jimmy Clausen threw for a career high 397 yards and 5 TD’s ( Grimes 15yd, Schmidt 17yd, Grimes 29yd, Floyd 44yd, Kamara 22yd) as he is getting better and better as the season winds down. Robert Hughes topped the 100 yard mark with 112 yards and scored a TD on a52 yard run. Asaph Schwaap scored the first TD in his 4 years on a dive from the one.

Syracuse was dismal and only had 138 yards of offense, three turnovers (2 fumbles, 1 INT) and was sacked 6 times. three of those sacks were via Kerry Neal.

After the game, Syracuse called Cincinnati and forfeited the next game. Two hours later, Syracuse announced the cancellation of the entire football program.

Troy Nunes continues to blog.

MVP- Jimmy Clausen: 31-40 397yds 5 TDs.

ND (10-1) @ U$C (9-1) 3-0 IRISH

The Trojans are coming off of a bye week and boy did they need it. The team has had 14 different outbreaks of jock itch this season. The players spent the off week sitting in tubs of ice. When Fighting Irish Assistant Head Coach Jon Tenuta was asked by a reporter if he “felt that this jock problem would translate into a positive for ND”, Tenuta calmly grabbed a a dead caribou carcass from under the desk and gnawed on it. I take that as a no comment.

The game itself turned into a disaster for both teams as a killer storm attacked Los Angeles. By killer, I mean that Brittany Spears, Tom Cruise, Paula Abdul, and Keanu Reeves are no longer with us. DUUUDE. The officials delayed the game for 2 hours waiting on the lightning to pass. When it finally did, the crap hole known as the Coliseum was now a real crap hole.

Neither team could move the ball efficiently and as frustration set in over the field conditions, tempers flared. Eric Olsen was tired of the bullshit. After the Irish came out at halftime with the game tied at 0-0, Olsen heard that fucking song from the Trojan band one too many times and destroyed the entire brass section himself. He was escorted out of the stadium by security to the applause of 79,000 fans. They were glad that the band finally was silenced as well.

The game continued on to be one punt after another. Field goals were tried and field goals were missed. Turnovers happened at a steady pace. Then, lightning struck. No not that lightning, Armando Allen. He received a punt at the Irish 22 yard line and somehow found enough footing to juke and jive his way to open daylight and streak down the sideline. He was finally pushed out of bounds at the Trojan 27 yardline. After 3 short runs Notre Dame was on the U$C 20 with :22 remaining after an Irish timeout. Brandon Walker trotted on to the field. The ball was set, and then it was snapped… right over the head of the holder! Walker chased the ball and fell on it to stop the play. Turnover on d….Flag on the play. U$C was lined up in the neutral zone. Irish ball. 1st and 10 from the 15. Weis kept his kicking unit out there as the clock now read :13. Walker was 32 yards away from glory. Snap is good… hold is good… the kick… motherfucking good!!!!! The Irish have a 3-0 lead with :7 remaining. The Trojans tried a lateral return on the kickoff but fumbled it away to Steve Paskorz with time expired.

Walker was carried off of the field. Pete Carroll wept as Snoop Dog beat his ass. The Irish finish the regular season at 11-1 and now wait on the BCS in a few weeks to find out where they play.

MVP- Brandon Walker: 1-4 FG 32 yarder & Ian Williams: 13 tackles 3TFL 2 sacks.

Next Up: Bowl Game

Ranking: 3 A.P. / 4 Coaches / 3 BCS

Stream Of Unconsciousness

November 5, 2007

My 11th and 12th grade C.P. English teacher had a writing exercise for us students called “The Stream of Consciousness.” Basically, we took 10 minutes and wrote down anything and everything that came to mind. Because I do not have the stomach to write anything worthwhile about the game versus Navy, this is all I can muster… unconsciously.

  • This team can’t tackle for shit.
  • Navy deserves credit, and Charlie Weis deserves blame.
  • Why did we try to run the clock down with Navy the entire game?
  • I started to make a list of all the big plays that helped decide this game. To my dismay, I stopped around number 18.
  • This was a great game to watch. Kind of. Any game ND loses is bad and this was to Navy.
  • We just lost to NAVY.
  • Kick the bloody field goal fat man.
  • 1-8. I am allowed to call Weis out.
  • I will also stick by Weis. If not him then who?
  • I liked the way we ran the ball. Of course, so has every other Navy opponent this year.
  • Robert Hughes deserved that TD. In all my years and of all the games I have gone to, that TD was the only one that put chills up my spine and a tear to my eye. R.I.P. Earl Hughes. Little brother is going to be O.K.
  • Fuck all you Zibby haters. He put us in the position for Weis to make a horrible call to NOT kick the FG.
  • Headbutts and Groin Kicks might have seen their last days. My head hurts and I have a high ankle sprain.
  • I wanted to punch every fan, as I left the stadium, and heard so many of them say “At least the game was competitive.” And then my wife said it. I love my wife. I love my wife.
  • Pass interference on Walls. And I’m a Gator fan.
  • NBC is the Ant-Christ. Nothing but absolute evil would torture so many with their thirst for TV timeouts.
  • This may be the best college football season ever. AND WE ARE 1-8!!! Something is screwy.
  • I hear we will be underdogs to AFA. Wake me up and tell me Quinn is still taking snaps for the Irish.
  • We are 1-8 and still able to give ESPN front page news.
  • A radio “personality” said Weis was arrogant for trying to score a TD instead of kicking the field goal. It was STUPID… not arrogant dipshit.
  • How many guys are going to leave? Aldridge was quoted after the game in an interview and said” This is the only place I want to be.” O.K. What about everybody else?
  • Indiana is going to a bowl game. NOTRE DAME IS 1-8!!!
  • I like what I am seeing from the freshman and most of the sophomores.
  • B.C. lost to FSU. Sweet justice.
  • #34 sack on Sharpley in mid-air. Fucking sick.
  • At least we don’t have to hear any more about “The Streak” It’s over and it has been due now for over a decade.
  • This sucks.
  • Congratulations to the Naval Academy. Now go find Bin Laden.
  • This sucks.
  • Go Irish!!!

Short And Simple

November 2, 2007

From McStug on Irish Illustrated’s 4 Horseman Lounge.

Everybody Else Is Doing It…Part IV, As In The Best Rocky Movie Ever Part IV

July 10, 2007

The 2007 season continues with Subway Domer’s “Why The Hell Not, 2007 Season Predictions” Part 4 of the epic 5 part series.

Notre Dame (7-1) VS. Navy (8-0) 47-14 IRISH

During the preseason, this game was pegged by some “experts” as an upset special. I suppose after 43 straight wins by the Irish in this series, they should lose sometime…right? Navy came into the game undefeated and had an impressive win at Rutgers (37-13). Well…wrong. This is the Charlie Weis era, and losing to an academy (all due respect) just doesn’t happen. The Irish came out with a balanced attack in the first half, and scored TD’s on its first 5 possessions. Clausen was 14-16 for 210 yards and 3 TDs (Grimes, West, Allen). The other 2 TDs were both runs by Thomas of 3 and 42 yards. The 1st half ended with the score 35-0. The Irish put its reserves in for the entire 2nd half. Navy did score 2 TDs quickly on the opening kickoff, and a fumble by Luke Schmidt that fell into the hands of Clint Sovie for a 28 yard return. Notre Dame’s other scores were a 33 yard bulldozing from Robert Hughes, a 34 yard FG from Walker, and a Safety on a blitz from Ray Herring.

MVP- Jimmy Clausen 14-16 210 yards 3 TDs

Notre Dame (8-1) VS. Air Force (6-4) 38-10 IRISH

In another game versus a Service Academy, the Irish came away with another victory. This was not so easy early on. ND was sloppy in the first half and had 2 fumbles and an interception in the red zone. Air Force was methodical and scored on its first 2 possessions. The first was a 21 yard FG after an apparent TD on a 4th and goal. (Offsetting penalties caused the play to be replayed and AFA took the chipshot that time around). The 2nd was a masterful 93 yard drive directed by Shaun Carney that ended with an 11 yard TD run by Carney on a QB sweep. The half ended with AFA up 10-0. Weis had a few words for the entire team at the half that I believe had something to do with Fudruckers. ND came out in the 2nd half and dominated AFA with physical play on both sides of the ball. Weis benched most of his running backs in the 2nd half and played Jabbie and Schwaap exclusively. Although it was only a 10 point deficit and not eligible for a “Great Comeback” moniker, it was quite impressive…here’s how…

  • Goerge West takes the opening kickoff back 82 yards to the AFA 8.
  • Jabbie Stiff Arms his way in for the first Irish TD.
  • Tommy Z gets an INT and takes it 41 yards for a TD.
  • Walker FG.
  • 72 yard TD reception by Richard Jackson via D. Jones.
  • 11 yard TD reception by Carlson via D. Jones.
  • 94 yard fumble return by Kerry Neal with 30 seconds left.

MVP- Kerry Neal 3 sacks, FR, TD, 13 tackles.

Notre Dame (9-1) VS. Duke (0-10) 42-0 IRISH

This needs no rehashing. It was a blowout from start to finish.

MVP- James Aldridge 20 carries 211 yards and 2 TDs

Notre Dame (10-1) @ Stanford (5-5) 31-28 IRISH

Stanford came into this game on a 5 game winning streak after starting out 0-5, and needed just one more win in their last two games to be bowl eligible for the first time since 2001. They are going to have to get that last win versus Cal. This was a nail bitter for Irish fans. A win would solidify a BCS berth and perhaps, with some luck, a National Championship appearance. It started out all ND in the 1st half. ND went up 21-0 in the first quarter on 3 big plays; 82 yard bomb to Kamara (third play of the game), 67 yard punt return by Zibby, and a blocked punt returned for a TD by McNeil. Stanford did get on track in the 2nd quarter with 2 drives of 81 and 73 yards that both ended with Ostrander to Moore TD receptions. At the half the score was 21-14 with the momentum (and the ball) to Stanford to start the third quarter. Stanford was pinned inside their own 5 to start the half after a bad return and a holding penalty. It took only 3 plays to get to the Irish 20 after strikes to Moore and Bradford. Two plays later, Cardinal fullback Emeka Nnoli carried a few Irish defenders into the endzone for a 16 yard TD run to tie the game. Notre Dame answered right away with a long drive of its own for 80 yards to score a TD on a D. Jones 12 yard pass to Carlson for a TD. And like a yo-yo, Stanford returned the favor with a TD drive that took only a shade over 3 minutes with another Moore TD reception. With 4 and a half minutes ND got the ball back on its 27 yard line. It methodically moved the ball one play after another. 5 yards here, 3 yards here, first down. The big play came on a screen pass to Armando Allen that got the Irish to the Cardinal 22 yard line with 49 seconds remaining. 3 running plays for a net 1 yard and 3 Stanford T.O.s later, Walker set up for a 38 yard FG. NAILED! The ghost of the Skunkbears behind them, the FG unit finally hit a clutch shot. The game ended with a desperation bomb that was intercepted by David Bruton. Let’s Go Bowling!

MVP- Brandon Walker 4-4 PAT 1-1 FG 38 yards.

Next Up: Bowl Game TBD

Ranking: 5 A.P. / 5 Coaches / 4 BCS