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Five things we learned: Notre Dame 29, Pitt 26

Nov 3, 2012, 10:36 PM EDT

Everett Golson, oe Trebitz

Make no mistake, this is a football game that Notre Dame finds a way to lose. Yet down 14 points in the fourth quarter, the No. 4 Fighting Irish kept plugging away, failing to let the litany of mistakes they made Saturday afternoon get in the way of a season that seems destined for greatness as they pulled out a stunning triple-overtime victory 29-26.

In the end, it was Notre Dame that spoiled things for the underdog. The Irish pulling out an unlikely victory. And while most Notre Dame fans felt sick to their stomach as they watched the home team commit six penalties and lose the turnover battle 3-0, Brian Kelly’s squad found a way to eke out a triple-overtime win, advancing to 9-0 for the first time since 1993.

“We made uncharacteristically some mistakes turning the football over obviously twice in the end zone,” Brian Kelly said after the game. “Last year that would have been a loss for us.  But our team kept fighting, kept playing.”

Against an undermanned Pitt team that gave the Irish their best shot, Notre Dame did just enough to escape with a win, relying on the late game heroics of Everett Golson, who ended an up-and-down battle when he plunged into the end zone on a quarterback keeper from inside the one-yard line in triple overtime. After surviving a 33-yard field goal attempt that would’ve ended the game with a Pitt victory, the Irish — and fans all across the country — can breathe a sigh of relief as Notre Dame lives to fight another day, their national championship aspirations still intact.

Let’s find out what we learned in Notre Dame’s 29-26 victory.

***

He’s still the ultimate loose cannon, but this is Everett Golson’s offense.

A look at the stat sheet doesn’t explain why Brian Kelly started the second half with Tommy Rees at the helm. But the Irish head coach sent a message loud and clear to his sophomore quarterback, and Everett Golson responded.

After nine games, Golson is no longer viewed as the young talent learning as he goes. He’s now the key cog to an Irish offense that desperately needs Golson to be its best play-maker and decision-maker. And in the first half, Golson wasn’t playing up to the elevated standards Kelly set for the quarterback. He missed open receivers for big gains, like a near-certain touchdown to a wide-open Troy Niklas. He put his head down and scrambled, choosing sandlot rules instead of proper reads. And he failed to capitalize in the red zone, leaving points on the board when the Irish offense was able to move the ball.

“I was a little upset just because of the competitor in me just wanted to be out there,” Golson said of the brief benching. “But I think it was good for me that I actually saw it this time. I think previously in the beginning of the year, I come out and they would end up telling me, but I think that just comes from a lot of film study with coaches.  You know, actually seeing my mistakes and kind of seeing it in the sidelines and seeing what they were doing kind of helped me come back and lead.”

Yet for all the frustrations Golson gives a coaching staff, the youngster proved that he was more than worth the trouble, coming alive late in the game and leading the Irish offense. Sure, he still makes the devastating decision — throwing an end zone pick when two other reads were open. But he also makes his share of magic happen, finding Davaris Daniels deep down field after the play broke down for a 45-yard reception. He capped that drive off with another improvisational wonder, hitting Theo Riddick dragging across the end zone for a touchdown, and then scored the game-tying two-point conversion for good measure, pulling the Irish even with just over two minutes to go.

Golson finished the night 23 of 42, throwing for 227 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He ran for 74 yards on 15 attempts, breaking a huge 27 yard run in the fourth quarter and plowing in for the game’s winning touchdown. And most importantly, he took another step forward, picking himself up off the mat and getting a victory for the Irish when a devastating loss seemed all but certain.

“He knows he didn’t play quite as well, but did when it counted,” Kelly said of Golson.  “He got a chance to go back in there and got the game ball tonight.  So it’s all a process of learning and developing and getting thicker skin, paying more attention to detail and practice.”

***

Notre Dame’s special teams almost cost them the game.

Another Saturday, another wretched performance by the Irish special teams. For a football team with a razor-thin margin of error, Notre Dame is doing itself no favors with its performance in the game’s all important third unit.

Obvious mistakes are probably the easiest to clean up, with Kyle Brindza missing a field goal as the first half expired and a low-snap lead to a pull-hook left that cost the Irish an all-important extra point. But just as costly is another game where the Irish are continually losing the battle for field position.

Pitt returns killed the Irish, with Lafayette Pitts putting together a nice day on kickoffs and Cameron Saddler showing a Notre Dame Stadium crowd that returning punts is possible, ripping off a 31-yarder to set the Panthers up nicely.

Irish specialists had a crummy day, with Brindza also failing to find the end zone on a single kickoff and punter Ben Turk not doing much to help either. Turk’s 41.4 average wasn’t bad, but with the game hanging in the balance and after the offense fighting back to tie the game, Turk barely got his foot on a punt with a minute left, sending a low roller that depended on a fortuitous roll to get 40 yards. No, it didn’t cost the Irish, but after four seasons on the job, you’d expect a veteran like Turk to be an asset not a liability.

It was no banner day for Irish return men either. George Atkinson looked timid as he tiptoed for yardage, getting drilled on the game’s opening kick to set the tone. And Davonte Neal fumbled a returnable punt late in the game while letting another kick roll 56 yards, once again flipping the field.

Brindza came up big in overtime, making a crucial field goal to extend the game. But with difference between winning and losing so slim, the Irish need to find some answers and stability on special teams, or get ready to lose a close football game.

***

Ray Graham was the first running back to expose some weakness in this Irish defense.

It didn’t take long for Notre Dame to realize that the Pitt offense wasn’t all that impressed with the Irish’s lofty defensive rankings or stout run defense. Ray Graham burst off the left side of the offensive line, sprinted by Heisman candidate Manti Te’o, and rumbled for 55-yards before cornerback KeiVarae Russell finally made the tackle.

That was far from all the damage that Graham did for the Panthers, with the senior runner going for 172 yards on 24 carries. He broke loose multiple times, as did the Panthers’ screen game, and Bob Diaco‘s unit had its toughest day at the office of 2012.

Yet when it came down to it, the Irish defense stiffened, holding Pitt to just 21 yards in the fourth quarter and overtime. And while Louis Nix didn’t start after spending two nights in the infirmary this week with the flu, the junior nose guard came up big along the front line, making four tackles from his nose guard spot and taking over the inside spot for Kona Schwenke.

Stephon Tuitt and Kapron Lewis-Moore were both very active for the front line, with Tuitt notching six tackles and 1.5 sacks and Lewis-Moore adding 1.5 sacks of his own and three stops. And after a quiet first half where he made only one tackle, Te’o came up with a huge sack of his own and ended the game with seven stops. Add in another sack from Prince Shembo and two tackles for loss, and the Irish worked their way to five sacks and eight TFLs, rebounding nicely.

We tackled sub-par for us in terms of our defense,” Kelly said. “I know Coach Diaco would not be happy right now. But they found a way to shut them down in the second half, and that is the key. We shut them down in overtime. We took (Graham) and really were able to control him late in the game.”

The Irish showed the first cracks in their armor on Saturday, but came up big when it counted.

***

The Irish ran for 230 yards. And it still felt like they abandoned their running game.

Usually a 230 yard day on the ground means good things for the Irish. But Saturday felt like a lost opportunity for a Notre Dame rushing game that felt got lost in the mix and missed too many blocking assignments. No series of plays comes to mind more than the Pitt goal line stand, where the Irish had three shots at the end zone from two yard line, but each time Theo Riddick was stopped short, with the last two coming after Pitt defenders crashed through the Irish offensive front untouched.

Series like that — not to mention trailing by 14 points late in the game — help explain Kelly’s decision to go away from a ground attack that was still doing a nice job gaining yards. At one point in the second half, the Irish ran 19 straight plays without getting one of their talented running backs involved in the game. It helps explain Golson’s Denard Robinson-like existence, where Golson accounted for almost 75 percent of the team’s total offense in the fourth quarter and overtimes, throwing for 105 yards and running for 59, 164 of the Irish’s 223 yards.

Kelly explained the decision to lean heavily on Golson and go away from the run, crediting Pitt defensive tackle Aaron Donald, who made seven tackles for a Pitt defense that depended on a ton of man coverage.

“They were playing a lot of cover one, moving the front,” Kelly said. “As you know we were having some problems inside blocking No. 97 in particular. We just felt if we could spread him out, that would give us an opportunity to move the football down the field.”

Spreading the Panthers out meant more Riddick in pass-heavy formations for the Irish running game, relegating Cierre Wood to an after-thought for much of the second half, even though Wood once again was having a good game on limited touches. Even with a 60-yard run called back, Wood ran for 5.4 yards a carry, while Riddick once again failed to average four yards a carry.

But Kelly showed why he puts his trust in Riddick as his primary ball carrier, even if he’s a far less dynamic option. With Wood getting his number called in double-overtime, the senior back extended the ball while leaping for the goal line, and fumbled just inches short of scoring, turning himself from hero to potential goat, if Pitt kicker Kevin Harper didn’t bail him out.

Does Wood try to do too much because he’s getting less touches? Was it simply a very good play by a defender and a very risky play by a runner who knows better? Probably somewhere in the middle. But the Irish run game felt like it didn’t do as much as it could on Saturday. And that they still manage to gain 230 yards on the ground means Harry Hiestand‘s troops are being held to a higher standard.

***

You could call it the luck of the Irish. But give Notre Dame credit for pulling out a football game that seemed all but lost.

Things weren’t pretty for the Irish late in the third quarter. With freshman tight end J.P. Holtz rumbling loose through the Irish secondary, it looked like Pitt was going to put the game out of reach when Graham gave the Panthers first and goal at the Notre Dame two-yard line. But the Irish held Pitt out of the end zone, limiting them to a chip-shot field goal and a 20-6 lead. From there on, the Irish scored 14 points, sending things to overtime and eventually winning in dramatic fashion.

“Good teams do what Notre Dame did,” Pitt coach Paul Chryst said after the game. “And that is win the close ones.”

The Irish won’t likely be rewarded by the pollsters for their win, but the dream undefeated season is alive. And it’s still possible thanks to some gutty efforts by some unheralded guys. Like safety Matthias Farley, who played with a cast on his hand just days after surgery in a move even Ronnie Lott would applaud.

“Matthias was operated on Tuesday, he was out cold on an operating table on Tuesday,” Kelly said of his safety now entrenched in the starting lineup after Jamoris Slaughter’s season-ending Achilles tendon injury. “They put two plates and six screws in his hand, put a cast on him, he came back and practiced Wednesday and Thursday you know, did the best he could.”

Kelly also had strong words of praise for Louis Nix, defending his player when an interviewer sounded like he questioned the validity of Nix’s illness.

“The kid was sick all week, and he busted his butt to try to help our football team today,” Kelly said. “So, you know, Louis Nix has got a lot in the bank of trust with me.  He was in the infirmary two nights, and he came out and helped our football team.”

And while Kelly wanted to steer the conversation away from any comparisons to the 2011 team that found ways to lose games like this, it was clear that the mental toughness that’s been preached about daily since December came through and helped this team rally for a season-saving victory.

“I’m proud of how passionate both our offense and defense are,” Golson said after the game. “The defense with their backs up against the wall, and Cierre fumbled, and just to have all the adversity. We had guys on the sidelines just saying, ‘Stay up.  Keep doing what you’re doing. We’re going to be good,’ and stuff like that.  I’m just proud of the character that we have.”

Character won’t help your BCS rankings or gain you points with pollsters looking for ways to differentiate undefeated teams. But it helps you win games, keeping the Irish in the conversation when it seemed they had done everything they could to play their way out of the national title hunt.

But on a Saturday that seemed all too eerily familiar to big game debacles of seasons’ past, Brian Kelly’s squad rallied to win on Saturday. That certainly counts for something.

In this case, a 9-0 record.

173 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. irish4me - Nov 4, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    Is it me, or do the Irish just suck at home? Every home game has been a nail biter no matter how bad the opponent. The Road games are a very different story, we seem to blow out everone no matter how great they are? What;s the answer to this one? At this point I’m much more concerned with Wake Forrest at home than a good USC away.

    • mikemcmack - Nov 4, 2012 at 3:52 PM

      Wake “Forrest”= Forrest Gump. Relax.

  2. mediocrebob - Nov 4, 2012 at 3:06 PM

    Dickasman-

    I live in Columbus, Ohio. Lived all over. One thing that finalized my hatred for the Ohio State fan base was during the Tressel years. Fans that complained about how they were winning. You do realize that’s what you’re doing? Let BK do his thing. The team is getting better. They’ve had down games. But we’ve won. 9-0. Stop complaining about winning.

    • 9irish - Nov 4, 2012 at 3:18 PM

      Bob, yep yep and yep. If OSU goes undefeated they better put Tressel in the witness protection program, because they are never going to stop saying that they are the Nat’l champions, and would be officially if not for him. Ugh.

    • mikemcmack - Nov 4, 2012 at 3:40 PM

      Same here Bob, from zipcode 43065. This ND season is so reminiscent of OSU’s 2002 championship run, in 2 ways:
      1: Win after win after highly-entertaining win, culminating in the “impossible” final triumph over “unbeatable” Miami, the Alabama du jour.
      2. Incessant whining and doom-and-glooming from 70% of the fan base after almost every one of those wins. Even after the Miami game, people were bitching because a few commentators said the Buckeyes were lucky to win it.
      As I’ve said before… if you don’t think 9 and 0 is FUN, you probably don’t have much fun at all.

      • bgnd91 - Nov 4, 2012 at 6:20 PM

        Eric Winston tweeted during the game that this team reminds him of that 02 Bucks team. Great D, spotty O and plays to the level of its competition. That hits the nail directly on the head.

  3. ihatemistate - Nov 4, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    Where is Goodman? Is he out hurt or what? Guess I missed something.

  4. jmfinsd - Nov 4, 2012 at 3:50 PM

    Schedule 2012
    Date Opponent Result
    9/1 Navy W 50 – 10
    9/8 Purdue W 20 – 17
    9/15 10 Michigan State W 20 – 3
    9/22 18 Michigan W 13 – 6
    10/6 Miami (FL) W 41 – 3
    10/13 17 Stanford W 20 – 13
    10/20 Brigham Young W 17 – 14
    10/27 8 Oklahoma W 30 – 13
    11/3 Pittsburgh W 29 – 26

    Doesn’t that look sweet. Who’d a thunk it?

    “I think just maybe taking this week lightly a little bit, thinking that we could play Pitt and not play our A-game, we could play our B-game and get the W,” wide receiver T.J. Jones said (to CSNChicago.com) of Notre Dame’s sloppy play. “It took us a while to kind of catch on and click. But once we figured out that this was going to be a battle, we started to get things rolling.” Other players echoed the sentiment. Hopefully they learn!!

  5. nddan1 - Nov 4, 2012 at 4:07 PM

    can someone tell me why notre dame has no post routes or slants?

    • ndfaithful - Nov 4, 2012 at 4:22 PM

      Post and slant routes are rare, but they are in there. Note the deep post route to Chris Brown on the drive when ND answered the TD that tied up the Oklahoma game at 13.

      Note the slant to TJ Jones that turned out to be the game winner in OT against Stanford.

      I wonder if they call them and Golson just misses them. BK has seemed to indicate that Golson leave a lot of opportunities out there. Perhaps there are a lot more called than you notice because the ball rarely gets thrown there (?)

      • starkruzr - Nov 4, 2012 at 5:09 PM

        I think Golson has a hard time seeing over his OL, which makes it hard for him to see routes that are literally right in front of his eyes. He doesn’t make those short and medium passes to guys wide open in front of him because he *can’t see them*.

    • mayo1010 - Nov 5, 2012 at 1:45 PM

      Ummm….I can recall a pretty good deep Post against OK when it was 13-13. Golson to Brown! What was that? I can recall a pretty good slant pattern Rees to Jones during Stanford OT….What was that? Come on dude!

  6. fitz79 - Nov 4, 2012 at 4:30 PM

    What a comeback! I was prepared for the potential of a loss the week before, but this game, as with the Irish players I suppose, caught me off guard. It really hammers home the old cliche that teams always play above their ability against Notre Dame. Especially in South Bend. Now that we’re back in the top 5, this trend will only get worse. But I trust in Kelly and this squad to learn their lesson from coming out flat footed against Pitt. In college football you have to give it your all each and every week. Especially when you’re Notre Dame and teams treat their game with you as their “super bowl.” I think we come out raring to go against BC and put up some prettier stats. But what this game also points to is the mentality of “just win baby!” Sure, my fingernails are all bit off, but if we finish 12-0, regardless, I will be very, very proud of this team. Kelly’s long term, not only short term, philosophies are clearly coming to fruition. Notre Dame is back and is here to stay!

  7. ndfaithful - Nov 4, 2012 at 4:31 PM

    While the score and game felt like we played ‘flat’ for three quarters, you have to realize that ND played a really good game from the 20 yard line to the 20 yard line when they had the ball. The red zone was very frustrating. Defensively, we looked average or good for three quarters (Pitt can play and had an excellent game plan). In the 4th quarter, I don’t think the Packers could have scored on us. The word around Pittsburgh is that the real ND defense showed up in the 4th quarter and it was breathtaking. The other word is that everyone is pissed about the interference call on 4th down.

    Consider the stats. If you had told me before the game that I could take it or leave it with:

    34 first downs
    522 total yards on offense
    almost 300 yards passing
    231 yards rushing
    51 rushing attempts
    and to win the time of posession by almost 11 minutes

    I would have projected 49 points for the Irish. (I actually DID project 49 pts.)
    BK’s been preaching it and I’m on board more than ever:

    3rd down passing efficiency and Red Zone offense.
    They figured out one of the two. If they can start putting up points when they get to the red zone, the rest of CFB better run and hide.

    GO IRISH!!!

  8. joeschu - Nov 4, 2012 at 4:48 PM

    I finally got to watch the game on the DVR this morning and here are my 5:

    1. We still have no clue what goes through BK’s head when he turns to Rees? What does he think that gives us that we haven’t seen before? I thought the BYU escape proved that, but apparently that was enough evidence for Keith, but not BK. Please stop with the “correct reads” crap too. There were negative runs while he was in the game that he failed to check out of.

    2-4 See #1

    5. Get well soon Nick Tausch. Competition at that spot may be helpful right now.

    It seems so odd to me to bash a guy for his leadership, then praise him for it, then bench him, then publicly call him out again, then stick him in to win the game, than call it all development. Is it that EG doesn’t lead the way BK wants? Too much personality/ego? He seems like a humble kid (Golson obviously, BK can’t even spell humility).

    BK is like a really smart psycho girlfriend. One week he makes it SOOOO easy for you to buy in, and then the next he goes all crazy. The good times are so good that you can’t possibly check out even when she’s irrational.

    I guess the most important thing about this team is the player leadership from guys like KLM and Te’o. They seem to have the hearts and heads in a place where they just refuse to lose, regardless of the circumstance. Funny, aren’t those the same guys BK said “weren’t his?”

  9. cpfirish - Nov 4, 2012 at 5:00 PM

    All I know is that I can’t stand fkn Mike Mayock! He is a complete joke and NBC needs to find someone different. I got sick of all his little lame ass comments!! It’s obvious that he does not want ND to win..

    • joeschu - Nov 4, 2012 at 6:01 PM

      Mayock didn’t have his best week, but he’s SUCH an upgrade vs. Hayden, and a very knowledgable guy. I think the whole thing was off with Hicks vs. Hammond. No one in their right mind LIKES Hammond, but yesterday was a case of Mayock being dragged down by the lack of familiarity there.

      NBC’s best option is Collinsworth, but I’m presuming he’d rather watch his son from the stands, and I’m sure there would be some blowback on having him in the booth.

      • 9irish - Nov 4, 2012 at 7:18 PM

        Eh….I don’t know. All broadcasters can be annoying. Bob Griese called games when his son was at Michigan. They’re alright. Have to remember, this isn’t the Westwood One, Paul Hornung/Allen Pinkett deal…this is nationwide on network TV. Have to say what they think, honestly. Even if they are full of dung.

        Biggest problem I have with Tom Hammond is that he doesn’t seem to know what the hell is going on half the time (where was he, btw?) Countless times he’ll say something and I’ll say, “No it’s not”, then he’ll correct himself. Maybe they have my house bugged.

        Go Irish.

  10. yaketyyacc - Nov 4, 2012 at 7:12 PM

    the mark of a “great” team is winning a game like Pitt. how many this season came up short in such a game. Notre Dame just defeated one, Oklahoma. the great? USC, just ask the preseason prognosticators. has lost three.
    what character this team possesses.
    now, we have our Boston Irish cousins coming in, and they will keep us very focused. against Notre Dame, they will be a more formidable opponent then Pitt. this game will involve a bunch of “fighting Irishmen”. I choose the Fighting Irishmen of Notre Dame. take it to them young men.

    • papadec - Nov 4, 2012 at 10:53 PM

      yakety – and with 3 losses, the voting idiots still have usc in the BCS top 20. BTW – ND is @ BC.

      • 9irish - Nov 5, 2012 at 9:11 AM

        See that’s where that blindfolded pre-season ranking crap still affects things, even this deep in the season. They started out #1 and it’s hard to get them to fall.

  11. nd1975fla - Nov 4, 2012 at 7:17 PM

    I’m not so sure of the comment about Golson’s 6’0″ height being a problem seeing over the middle. Drew Brees is also listed at 6’0″ tall, and he seems to find his receivers when he is in the pocket. But I admit that Brees cranes his neck a lot!

    I think that the college passing offense is very complicated from what Golson was used to in H.S.- he is clearly not used to checking down through his primary, secondary, etc. receivers, nor does he seem to change the play at the line of scrimmage often based on the defensive alignment.

    But I believe that better recognition of the open receivers will come with more time and experience- it seems that the game is still moving too fast for him at times. If we could only download Rees’ knowledge of the offense into Golson’s head. In the meantime, Golson’s ability to extend passing plays when necessary will continue to give the passing game an edge that it hasn’t seen during Kelly’s tenure at ND.

  12. nd1975fla - Nov 4, 2012 at 7:24 PM

    Keith- does ND make flu shots mandatory for its football team? On the surface, it seems like a no-brainer. Two weeks in a row that we’ve had “man down” with flu symptoms. I don’t recall this topic being discussed before in any articles.

    • mikemcmack - Nov 4, 2012 at 7:57 PM

      Right…somebody needs to be fired or benched for allowing a few of the Irish to catch a cold!
      Is Keith giving a prize this week for the most anal-retentive nitpick? If so, this comment wins, hands down.

      • nd1975fla - Nov 5, 2012 at 7:01 AM

        Flu vs. common cold- two very different things. Common cold- an inconvenience; influenza- killed millions worldwide after WW1. Just a year or two ago scores of college age kids- healthy otherwise- were dying from that year’s particular strain of flu virus. Sounds like someone cut some classes when that subject was taught!

        Reasonable question- uneducated response.

  13. frankb51 - Nov 4, 2012 at 7:49 PM

    EG is a great talent, shows poise and promise. I think the mistakes come from inexperience, a little nervousness, and a willingness to make the “world” happy on every play. He is without a doubt, on the biggest college football stage in the country. Dont take this the wrong way, I have been an ND fan since 1961, a part of me thinks a loss by this time would not be the end of the world: especially for the development of EG. Remember, all signs point to BK building a sustainible, powerful football program which has not be around for a long time. Rivals.com is predicting ND could be as high as no.2 in recruiting for next year. So lets look at this as a work in progress, no temporary fixes, (we tried that with the last three coaches), lets invest for the long haul.

    The pressure mounts week by week to the point that the three worst teams on the east coast will probably give ND all it can handle, the first one already did.

    BK as you always say, play to win, and not to avoid losing.
    BK, please teach the kid how to scan the field for the secondary read, the last three games the middle of the field has been wide open for TE’s, etc.

    And as always, in closing, can Devonte Neal please get a touch, other than the pressure cooker of fielding punts as a true freshman!

  14. steincj36 - Nov 4, 2012 at 8:57 PM

    Tom Hammond was on location with the Breeder’s Cup.

    Mike Maalox did a great job of churning my stomach acids. No Mike, this is not fun. Not fun at all.

    • 9irish - Nov 4, 2012 at 10:28 PM

      Ha! yeah, I forgot about the Breeder’s Cup. And yes, I about pulled an Elvis and shot the TV when Mayock kept saying, “This is fun! I love this! I’m going to have to have plastic surgery to have the damned smile removed from my face!”

      ugh.

  15. ctyanker4 - Nov 4, 2012 at 10:40 PM

    My Lord, dude. Are you being paid to write this garbage? “eek” out a victory? “breath” a sigh of relief. debacles of “season’s” past? This would be unacceptable for a junior-high kid.

    You discredit all writers by paying so little attention to the language. Shame on you.

    • Keith Arnold - Nov 4, 2012 at 11:11 PM

      Thanks for the grammatical fixes. Missed them, always appreciate a quick lesson. Glad that two typos was enough to ruin 2,000 words.

      • dillonbigred - Nov 5, 2012 at 12:39 AM

        Yeah Keith, shame on you. All you had to do yesterday was write three articles and handle a 4 hour game blog! Your two errors ruined ND win for me.

  16. alsatiannd - Nov 5, 2012 at 12:10 AM

    Redfield decommitted from USC. They’re blaming his visit to ND. He posted this, “…it is a decision that is crucial for my future athletically, academically, and spiritually.”

  17. dutch31 - Nov 5, 2012 at 12:45 AM

    Keith you shouldnt even respond to those ridiculous gramatical critics. There is just no need, I think u do a great job with your articles, I reallly enjoy them, also love reading the comments.

    Yesterday was my first live game this year and it certainly allows see alot more in terms of watching the route combinations and defensive formations and coverages. TV has its benefits with replays seeing who missed assignments or missed blocks etc…

    However what I did notice is that when BK spread them out with 5 wide empty, he almost never ran any pass routes between the hashes. Seemed to me that crossing routes were available at any time. In the 3rd OT he drug Riddick across the middle at about 8 yds of depth, ended up being a 14 yd completion and set up the game winnning TD. Looked like that pass was there any time he wanted it Has anyone asked BK that and if so let us know what his response. Maybe Im seeing it wrong, would love to know your opinion.
    Also in an earlier post I indicated the 3 times I watched Pitt play I thought they played well. Well I have seen parts of BC games on several times. Cant say the same thing on BCs end, they have been flat out awful!

    See u in Boston ( Chestnut Hill).
    GO IRISH!

  18. hbmichael9 - Nov 5, 2012 at 2:54 AM

    Great article as always Keith.

    I came away with a few questions…
    1.) Where was Manti? About half way through the game one of my buddies said “they are only mentioning him to say they arent mentioning him” and it was absolutely true. Very quiet game from the big man.
    2.) Why does BK keep going to Rees / what is the plan? He isn’t going to give a “spark”, is he just sending a message?
    3.) Who (besides Teo) will be our biggest departures next year? I guess Cave and Martin up front, and KLM on D… do Theo and Cierre both have another year under the golden dome?

    By the way, lots of comments on other articles from Pitt fans about how ND isn’t good and hasn’t beaten anyone…. blah blah… found it funny to realize that on their schedule they have Youngstown State, Gardner-webb, Buffalo, and Temple!!? ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME!!!????

  19. 1historian - Nov 5, 2012 at 6:20 AM

    keeth;

    u due real good

    thanx

  20. norcalirish - Nov 5, 2012 at 7:03 AM

    Joeschu: LMAO! “BK is like a really smart psycho girlfriend. One week he makes it SOOOO easy for you to buy in, and then the next he goes all crazy. The good times are so good that you can’t possibly check out even when she’s irrational.”

    jerseyshore: enjoy the fam! Take nothing for granted!

    Cheers

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