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Sep 26, 2010

Recapping Stanford

Finally winning the turnover battle and getting consistency from Te'o were all for naught against a Stanford team that dominated the Irish on both lines.

ND's ends and outside backers failed to generate any pass rush. By contrast, Harbaugh's three-man rush meant trouble for Crist against 8 dropped defenders. Reminiscent of the '08 BC game, the most troubling part was that ND still couldn't run the ball.

Called runs on two of the first three snaps netted a combined 2 yards (which was average yesterday, sadly), showing a willingness to run but failed execution.

Kelly reflected on Sunday. "I'd like to have a little more balance...We have to evolve a little further in running the football."

The offensive ineptitude reversed its previous progression, but the line of scrimmage most importantly revealed just how far ND has to go in terms of physical and mental toughness. Weakness up front likely led to unsound playcalling (throwing on 3rd and 1) and game mismanagement at the end of the first half. Crist will bounce back, but Stanford highlighted our more pressing problems.

ND rushed 23 times against Stanford and an average of 31.3 times in the previous three games. The YPC average was an even wider difference when comparing Stanford to the other opponents, though. Kelly knows we need to run the ball better. While the defense was previously the overwhelming question mark, implementing the rushing goal has joined it as the major keys to the rest of the season.


  1. The running game does needs improvement, but our passing game also seems to be regressing. The additional coverage doesn't help, but Crist thew several incompletions that were just inaccurate passes (i.e. not broken up by DB's). He needs to lead our receivers when he's throwing downfield. There were several instances of throwing behind a running player, which hurts our YAC as well.

  2. I agree with the man on the moon that our passing game dropped off from week 3 to week 4, and not only because we faced a better pass defense. Crist is developing as a starter, and off days are inevitable, but it would be nice to see his receivers help him out a little bit by making the difficult catches and turning routine receptions into big plays (the way GT consistently made Jimmy look good by making ridiculous plays... maybe GT 2.0 can continue the tradition by making some Riddickulous plays...)

  3. Irish Moon...pass game took a huge step back. Stanford's coaching staff did a great job with the 8 dropped defenders and good use of blitzes. Kelly said Stanford hadn't previously played any Cover 3 this year, but hopefully he's aware that Spaziani also preferred dropping 8 against ND the past two years.


2012 Notre Dame Football Schedule

2012 Notre Dame Football Schedule
DateOpponent / EventLocationTime / Result
09/01/12vs. Navy Dublin, IrelandW, 50-10
09/08/12vs. PurdontNotre Dame, Ind.W, 20-17
09/15/12at SpartyEast Lansing, Mich.W, 20-3
09/22/12vs. SkunkbearsNotre Dame, Ind.W, 13-6
Shamrock Series
10/06/12vs. Da UChicago, Ill.W, 41-3
10/13/12vs. TreesNotre Dame, Ind.W, 20-13 (OT)
10/20/12vs. BYU Notre Dame, Ind.W, 17-14
10/27/12at Oklahoma Norman, Okla.W, 30-13
11/03/12vs. Pittsburgh Notre Dame, Ind.W, 29-26 (3OT)
11/10/12at Backup College Chestnut Hill, Mass.W, 21-6
11/17/12vs. Fake Worest Notre Dame, Ind.W, 38-0
11/24/12at U$C Los Angeles, Calif.W, 22-13
1/7/13vs. AlabamaBCS CHAMPIONSHIP
(Miami, Florida)
L, :(