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Offense vs. Defense in the 83rd annual Blue-Gold game

Apr 18, 2012, 5:30 PM EDT

Cierre Wood Pitt

Brian Kelly met with the media after the penultimate practice of spring, and one of his first orders of business was breaking down the rules for the 83rd annual Blue-Gold Game. With the depth chart a bit thin at positions like cornerback and wide receiver, after two seasons of a traditionally formatted game, scoring will be broken down between offense and defense.

“Because we’re short of numbers at the cornerback position, and in particular at the wide receiver position, we do want to protect some guys,” Kelly explained. “If we were to go strictly blue versus gold, you’d have guys like Zack Martin who would have to play four quarters. I’m not interested in that. I know what he can do. Tyler Eifert would have to play a lot. I’m not interested in having him out there the whole game. Manti would have to play quite a bit.”

Still, for those feeling a little cheated with a non-traditional format, this year’s game will actually be the first time in the Kelly era where there’s actually a chance to take stock of what the Irish have. For the first time, all four quarterbacks will be live. The defense is free to send pressure and mix coverages. And while no special teams will be played fully live, the deck will be stacked evenly between both units.

“We’re going to go offense versus defense, and in that system, we’ll try to have it ones versus ones,” Kelly said. So A goes against A, B goes against B, and it’s not ones versus twos. We’re trying to balance it the best that we can. So if it’s A versus A, offense versus defense, it’s not strictly ones versus ones. Then the second offense comes out, it’s not all twos. We’re mixing and matching players.”

After twenty-plus years of spring games, Kelly has decided that simplicity in scoring is the best way to go. The offense will earn points the good old fashioned way — with touchdowns and field goals. The defense will earn theirs through turnovers and stops. For those worried about a complicated formula that necessitates a calculator, there’s no bonus points for sacks or tackles-for-loss, but a simple equation for the defense.

“I’ve really looked at all the scoring systems I’ve used, and we’re going to make this a team scoring system,” Kelly explained. “There will not be individual points for sacks or tackles for loss or pass breakups or any of that stuff. We’re going to talk about stops and turnovers for the defense. Their points are earned by stops and turnovers.”

Special teams will be limited in the game, with punts being fair caught and all drives starting on the 35 yard line. There will be no block attempts on field goals or extra points. The first half will be standard timing, while the second half will feature a running clock. The teams will break 15 minutes for halftime.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the scoring system for the 83rd Blue-Gold game.

6 points for a touchdown (1 point for PAT kicks, no rush allowed).
3 points for a field goal.

4 points for a defensive stop before offense crosses the 50.
2 points for a defensive stop after offense crosses the 50.
7 points for a turnover before the offense crosses the 50.
3 points for a turnover after the offense crosses the 50.
1 point for holding the offense to a field goal.

  1. bernhtp - Apr 18, 2012 at 5:39 PM

    I will be excited to see this. This will be my first BG game in person since I was a student decades ago.

    • poppajohn818 - Apr 19, 2012 at 5:52 PM

      I am a ND fan & live in KY, how can I get the B/G game sat & what time of the day. Please someone

      • bernhtp - Apr 19, 2012 at 6:23 PM

        I’m the wrong person to ask about the TV schedule since I will be watching it live, but I’m pretty good with internet search.

  2. ccad05 - Apr 18, 2012 at 8:18 PM

    See ya Saturday.

  3. Tim's Neighbor - Apr 18, 2012 at 9:16 PM

    The punts will be fair caught.

    Of course they will.

    • alsatiannd - Apr 19, 2012 at 9:04 AM

      Best comment of the entire spring.

  4. gtizzo - Apr 18, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    Interesting, all 4 QB’s will see the field that should help the debate. I don’t normally watch spring games, but I think I will make an exception here. I just hope for zero injuries.

  5. idratherbeinsouthbend - Apr 19, 2012 at 1:05 AM

    About a month ago, somebody on these boards had some crazy talk about Gunner Kiel winning the heisman. If he’s gonna do it, Saturday will have to be his coming out party.

    Obviously, the QB’s will be the big focus, but i’m really curious to see Atkinson and Cierre and the WR’s. I would guess that the backfield will be a two-headed monster with Cierre getting a few more carries than Atkinson, but at the WR position, i don’t have any expectations for any of them. Really, who do you think will come out on top with the receivers? I know Goody’s name has been mentioned repeatedly this spring, but that’s only one guy.

    • runners00 - Apr 19, 2012 at 1:22 PM

      I doubt he has any Heisman shot but he’s a really talented athlete with a great arm. That is why it was great to see him land in South Bend.

  6. nudeman - Apr 19, 2012 at 11:44 AM

    Off topic, but when it comes to Lynch, that’s always an acceptable digression.

    The 4HL Lounge is teeming with Lynch stuff. Sounds like he’s at USF this weekend. My guess is he gets there, has a decent visit, but with facilities, coaches, athletes and an overall program that is inferior to ND, he’ll have a “WTF am I doing?” moment.

    So with that as a prelude, this is a post on the 4HL I found interesting. It is NOT from the editor, but seems to be from someone in the know. TIFWIW.

    1)His mom is still in ND’s corner but she supports her son as she should. Life is about making decisions and living with the consequences. Even if the decision may not be in Aaron’s best interest or one she agrees with he’s still her son plain and simple

    2)Supposedly his GF is on ND’s side and still would be willing to move to South Bend to be near but again she is going to support Aaron with whatever decision he chooses.

    3)There are other resources out there trying to talk with him. Former players, Phillip Daniels, etc.

    Patience is the operative word. I believe Pete stated it was a 10% chance so it’s not something that needs to be asked daily. Lynch has 4-5 weeks to complete the semester so it may be a while before you here anything one way or the other.

    • dmac4real - Apr 19, 2012 at 2:20 PM

      Yet USF beat us. Sigh….

  7. poppajohn818 - Apr 19, 2012 at 5:50 PM

    I wish Mr. Lynch would change his mind. His leaving really hurt ND football. Someone gives his GF a job in SB

  8. ccad05 - Apr 19, 2012 at 5:53 PM

    A usf player tweeted today that lynch is joining them this summer after semester ends here and said welcome aboard. He’s gone forget him. Lewis- moore you’re up buddy. Time to shine.

  9. ccad05 - Apr 19, 2012 at 5:54 PM will be streaming it and I believe it will be televised on nbcsports

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