Commits – Gain one Lose one – Elijah Hicks

Elijah Hicks

Elijah Hicks 4 Star DB from California brings the 2017 Class back up to 18 again. He had offers from USC, Michigan, UCLA and Washington. He is considered to be ready to contribute in 2017 – so that’s good.

On the other hand DL Commit Donovan Jeter has re-opened his recruitment. That’s tough since ND has a hard time landing 4 Star DL, and we really need them.

I hope Brian Kelly turns over Kizer to Sanford, for Kelly has ruined every ND QB that he has coached. He mentally screws them all up.

I’ve often wondered where the offense went that got Kelly the ND job in the first place. You know the warp speed uptempo run and gun that worked so well at Cincinnati.

Now I don’t know what Offense he is trying to operate except for the east/west running game. The Cincinnati QB’s got the ball and fired within about 1-2 seconds, then hurry up.

Boy does the rest of this season look bleak.


Stanford 17 Notre Dame 10

Brian Kelly Stanford Press

There is no light at the end of this nightmare. ND lost to a dreadful Stanford team whose best player was sidelined. Going up 10-0 at the half I felt sure we would coast along for at least another 20 points – we got 0.

QB Kizer seems to becoming completely unglued, to such an extent that he was replaced for 3 wasted series by Zaire. Play calling once again inept for ND and in the meantime the Stanford DL ate ours alive.

ND simply cannot block at all whether running or passing. You have to ask yourself whether these guys are any good at all or whether despite their size the are just lacking strength – the TE’s really suck.

So is the Strength coach any good? What about the revered OL coach Hiestand? Can he coach or is he simply a good recruiter who was blessed by Stanley, Watt and the two Martin brothers? I think it’s the latter. Remember Steve Elmer, he started as a freshman, but got worse every year until he just quit. Was he uncoachable?

No reason for ND’s Center not to be replaced. Put the Hoge kid in and lets start building for 2017.

If this meltdown was a business, consultants would be crawling all over the place. Swarbrick needs to have an entire evaluation of each and every football coach on this team. Kelly is now exuding “loser” and seems disengaged to the extent that he looks like he is looking for a way to get the hell out of South Bend.

I would say that the only coach on this team with any appeal is the alleged OC Sanford – he goes right after the season. Kelly should go or if not the entire asst. coaching brigade. You might keep Elston solely for recruiting and nothing else – lots of baggage in this program.

Meanwhile MSU lost again, this time to Northwestern 54-40.

Here are the highlight clips:

Here is the Brian Kelly post game press conference:


Notre Dame Vs Stanford Predictions

Notre Dame Vs Stanford Predictions

Both of these teams are spiraling downward. We all know about ND, but what happened to Stanford? A lot of guys graduated including their starting QB and 3 OL.

Now they lost to injury All American RB McCaffrey, at least for this game. It’s really hard to get a feel for Stanford for they started out great before losing their last 2 games:

  • W 26-13 vs. Kansas State
  • W 27-10 vs. USC
  • W 22-13 vs. UCLA
  • L 44-6 vs. Washington
  • L 42-16 vs. Washington State

With a rebuilt OL and new QB they are just not the dominant team of the last several years with prolific offenses and staunch defenses. Outside of 2 very good DL Solomon Thomas 6’3″ 275 and Harrison Phillips 6’4″ 290 Stanford hasn’t a lot to offer. These 2 guys will give ND’s OL a good workout especially Thomas who’s averaging a sack per game.

So this will favor ND since this is not the old Stanford and if Kizer is on and the play calling is somewhat competent, ND could roll these guys.

ND’s play calling is atrocious despite having Kelly, Denbrock, Sanford and now Jeff Quinn contributing. Quinn moved from analyst to asst. strength coach (so he can coach on the field) and has a ton of experience including OC for Kelly at Cinncy. He also was HC at Buffalo and fired but no one wins at Buffalo.

If ND can give Kizer time he puts up 45 points while the D surrenders 27.

Notre Dame 45 Stanford 27


NC State 10 Notre Dame 3

Brian Kelly NC State Press Conference

The only people dumber than the ND coaches are the idiots sitting in the pouring rain watching a God awful demonstration of football.

Brian Kelly let everyone at home know that it wasn’t him that lost the game but his Center who he lambasted on the sidelines for way too long. Then to prove he was still coaching he called a timeout with 13 seconds to go proving absolutely nothing.

I actually was pleased with our Defense. They certainly hit hard and for the most part played very hard. They continue to have tackling problems – yes #23 and over running plays but overall they are getting better. I think they like playing for the new DC.

The OL continues to be dreadful. They cannot run block and they backslid on pass protection. It was only the rain and sloppy field that stopped State’s DL from decapitating Kizer.

When it rains you should be pounding the ball north/south but ND would rather run east/west and gain that 1 yard.

The ND staff showing off their coaching prowess lined up for a rugby punt with 2 blockers but the punter said the hell with that he’s kicking the old way. It was blocked for the game winning score. He almost kicked his blocker 83 right in the ass.

So Kelly had, once again, a befuddled look during the press conference — sorta like — “what’s going on here, this shit doesn’t happen to a guy as smart as me?”.

The coaching staff did learn one thing. It’s never a good idea to pass in gale force winds and a torrential downpour – put a star next to that in the playbook.

Here is the Brian Kelly post game press conference:


Notre Dame At NC State Predictions

ND vs NC State Predictions

With all of the nail biting about this hurricane, the obvious solution to me is to play at Notre Dame. This situation is just too damn scary to put these kids in jeopardy. My guess is that they don’t play this game, which would be the best outcome for ND.

This game, if played, will mark the start of the slide toward oblivion for this team. NC State is 3-1 with their latest game a 33-16 win over Wake Forest.

They have a steady accurate QB in Ryan Finley who goes about 255 yds per game. They also have a very good RB in Matthew Dayes (avg. 109 yds per game) and a very good receiver in Samuels, who does a little bit of everything. Randy Moss’s kid is coming along as a receiver. So they have players.

On Defense, their strength is the front four plus very good LB’s. Weakness is the secondary.

So NC State will score and if ND is to win, Kizer has to put up monster numbers – he can’t go cold. My biggest problem is the ND OL. I think NC State’s DL completely dominates them and batters and harasses Kizer. The running game will go nowhere. I think NC State will expose this ND team on both sides of the ball.

NC State 48 Notre Dame 35


Notre Dame 50 Syracuse 33

It looked like both teams thought it would be neat to go over 100 combined points. Both defenses were equally bad and both offenses left points on the board, but at least ND won.

Even with all this offense it was a dull and disappointing game. Can’t get jacked with ND when you know down the road someone will blow the doors down.

ND looked like they emptied their defensive bench as just about everybody played.

On offense Kizer went for 471 yards, 3 TD’s and 1 Pick. Adams went over 100 yards rushing. Equanimeous St. Brown is our next receiving star. ND has a big problem in that the OL just cannot get any push when you just need a yard or so.

I just can’t fathom that when you look at what we recruit and the backs we have it’s mostly east/west running. It was very noticeable with all the guys playing that Zaire sat on the bench.

Syracuse has a nice fast offense and those kids played hard, hell they hung just short of 500 yards on ND. Their QB hit for 363 yds and 2 TD’s. If they were luckier they could have won this game.

Kizer is a really good player, but man is he hot and cold – a lot of misses in this game. I wish to hell Kelly would leave him alone. No doubt in my mind he goes PRO.

When we hit the hard part of our schedule we gotta go over 60 points.

Enjoy the clips. Here are the game highlights:

Here is Brian Kelly’s after game press conference:


Notre Dame Vs Syracuse NJ 12:00 PM Noon ESPN

Brian Kelly Crazy

The lunatic is in my head
You raise the blade, you make the change
You re-arrange me ’till I’m sane
You lock the door
And throw away the key
There’s someone in my head but it’s not me.
— Pink Floyd —

Brian Kelly, now 7 years into the job is feeling the insidious need to win. This mindset fried a lot of former ND coaches including Frank Leahy, Ara and Dan Devine – Most of them simply broken by health issues, all related to winning games. 10 years was it for them – Devine bailed early.

Now I direct your attention to a bizarre Brian Kelly presser whereby he just about proclaims himself to be the Caesar of this team.

“I’m in charge!! Both offense and defense – it’s me, my plan, my coaching – the others better just do what I say and follow my plan. I’m going to play just about everybody on the bench. I’m tired of fooling around.

His problem is the Baylor warp speed offense that Syracuse runs – you know the wideouts spread so far out, they look out of bounds.

Dreary day for ND as players are blasted by the uptempo Syracuse offense and their own defensive confusion. Also Kizer has 3 sacks. It really is over now.

Syracuse 35 Notre Dame 30


Brian VanGorder Fired

Brian Vangorder

Brian Kelly axed Brian VanGorder today, which was expected but I thought it would come after this season. However, with 8 games left and everyone averaging 500 yds against ND I guess he had no choice.

Greg Hudson who is currently at ND as an analyst was named the new DC. Hudson played an undistinguished career as a LB in the 90’s and has been in coaching ever since.

His last job was as a DC at Purdue from which he was unceremoniously fired – so don’t go jumping for joy. I really hope this is an interim appointment for his Purdue firing was wildly applauded.

You gotta feel for Montgomery VanGorder, unfortunately he’s only a junior.


Duke 38 Notre Dame 35

Brian Kelly Duke Press Conference

Now that seems very strange to write that header, yet Duke comes in with 2 losses, freshman QB and rolls up 500 yds on ND – actually just shy. QB Jones accounted for 3 TD passes and 1 pick. Duke’s best player injured his knee in the 1st quarter or this score would have been worse.

I think Kelly’s presser says it all, he’s hoping mad at everyone associated with this team except Dexter Williams. Kelly really goes after QB Kizer which seems odd since Kizer has to carry the whole team. Was he sharp? No, but he did account for 381 yds. 2TD 1 Pick and 1 rush TD.

Here is Brian Kelly’s after game press conference:

This is a team that is sinking fast and it’s hard to believe many favored ND to make the Final Four. Now 6-6 would be considered a good finish. Little to add here, but Kelly threatening to bring in Wimbush is absurd and merely a shot at Kizer.

He should be jumping all over the OL for if Kizer was better protected and the running game is blocking better we wouldn’t be having half of these problems. No straight ahead blocking. We still insist on running east-west.

So what else is going on? Well Wisconsin held MSU to 2 first half FG’s and won 30-6. Nevada lost to Purdue and Syracuse edged UCONN so I guess Diaco is on the hot seat there. Syracuse, by the way, runs an uptempo offense.

With Kelly burning down the entire team how does he get anything out of them? The way he’s talking, he’ll have 22 different starters for Syracuse.

Finally, the Defense. Nothing else left to say about them although I did see them more aggressive in tackling. The only problem is that while they were hitting harder all that did for them is bounce them further backward. Also, the DL just cannot work up the energy to play more than 7 minutes or so.

Here are the game highlights:


Notre Dame Vs Duke Predictions

Notre Dame Vs Duke Predictions

Duke currently at 1-2 has played tough in both losses to Wake Forest (24-14) and Northwestern (24-13) and they are coached by David Cutcliffe who has taken them to 5 Bowl Games – I think.

Cutcliffe was set to join Charley Weis as QB coach when he had to bow out due to open heart surgery. They have a 215 lb RB who is averaging 5 yds a carry.

They also have a nice young QB Daniel Jones who averages 266 passing yds per game – that’s 800 yds in 3 games. He has a group of talented receivers who will fight for the ball. So look for a lot of passing as well as the deep ball from Duke.

On defense Duke is decent, they have a good DL and currently rank 3rd in the country in sacks. 14 sacks in 3 games. ND has 0. So these guys will not just come in and give it up.

ND Stadium has long since lost its mystique and scares no one anymore. Too many losses in big games, playing disinterested and uninspired to alleged pushovers. So I fully expect Duke to take it to them.

ND has big problems on both sides of the ball. On offense they just run the same plays over and over which I think makes a defensive co-coordinators game plan easy.

ND must protect Kizer at all costs. Duke will jam the box and put an unrelenting rush on Kizer, they want to be disruptive and deceptive.

So far the ND OL has not looked overly imposing, certainly not impressive. So there is hay to make by Duke if they play aggressive.

Everyone knows the ND defense is basically a disaster. I’ve never seen so many befuddled players on the field at the same time.

That entire defensive coach group really has to step up – this is not all BVG’s fault. Finally, can these guys just play hard for an entire game and not for just a couple of plays.

I expect this to play out as similar past games.

Notre Dame 27 Duke 17