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Notre Dame 34 Virginia 27 | Zaire Out For Season

Better unpack your luggage, you are not going to the Final Four. ND once again displayed a schizo personality and did not carry over or expand on it’s win over Texas.

After a good start ND, once again, had trouble scoring TD’s in the first half which would have led to a blow out in the first half which would have saved Malik Zaire from breaking his ankle late in the 3rd Quarter. Zaire is now out for the season.

This was a game on the schedule where good teams get plenty of playing time for their subs. Experienced backups are vital later in the season. The trick play for the 1st TD is probably courtesy of new OC. It looked like a Boise State play. Kelly wouldn’t have thought of that play if he coached another 25 years.

Offense:

  • Nemesis DC John Tenuta had them pretty much confused most of the game. The strength of this ND team was supposed to be the OL. Wow did they have problems. In fact early in the game Center Nick Martin was knocked flat on his back – so much for strength hey.
  • Zaire had a good day running, but passing was not sharp at all.
  • CJ Prosise is terrific, but Kelly has to get the 2 Freshmen more touches or he’ll be worn out by mid-year.
  • Play of the game was Kizer’s 39 yd TD to Fuller with 12 seconds left.
  • ND was an incredible 0-10 in 3rd down situations.
  • Further, this gigantic OL could not get 1-2 yds when needed.
  • Final thought here – Tenuta just gave future opponents the template to stymie this ND offense.

Defense:

  • Good early start and then unraveled. I thought they were playing a lot like last year.
  • Suggestion – put a Safety 25 yds off the ball and tell him to watch out for anyone running free and then cover him. Much better than playing no Safety’s.
  • A pedestrian Virginia QB Matt Johns actually had 289 yds passing.
  • I’m getting worried about VanGorder and while I detest the Bend/Break defense something is not clicking here.

Stats of the game:

NOTRE DAME     VIRGINIA  
1ST DOWNS Notre Dame 20 Virginia 22
TOTAL YDS Notre Dame 460 Virginia 416
PASS Notre Dame 207 Virginia 289
RUSH Notre Dame 253 Virginia 127
TIME Notre Dame 26 min. Virginia 33 min.

So, what now? Well let’s see. Georgia Tech tuned up by trouncing Tulane 65-10 with 571 total yds. and 439 rush yds on 56 running plays. Migraines are already breaking out already in South Bend.

The only good news is Texas thrashed Rice. Don’t think about USC, you’ll only commit suicide.

Here are some of the video highlight clips of the game:

Here is Brian Kelly’s post game press interview:

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