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2013 NOTRE DAME FOOTBALL PREVIEW

July 7, 2013
INDIANA SPORTS PAGE



Notre Dame Fighting Irish (1964 - Pres)

 

2013 NOTRE DAME FOOTBALL PREVIEW 

Head coach: Brian Kelly
4th year: 28-11
15th year overall: 199-68-2

 

Bob Diaco - Assistant Head Coach/Defensive   Coord./Linebackers

Paul Longo - Director of Football Strength and   Conditioning

Chuck Martin - Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks

Tony Alford - Running Backs/Slot Wide   Receivers/Recruiting Coord.

Scott Booker - Tight Ends/Special Teams Coordinator

Kerry Cooks - Co-Defensive Coordinator/Cornerbacks

Mike Denbrock - Outside Wide Receivers/Passing Game   Coordinator

Bob Elliott - Safeties

Mike Elston - Defensive Line

Harry Hiestand - Offensive Line

Corey Brown - Graduate Assistant (Defense)

David Grimes - Assistant Strength & Conditioning Coach

Josh Reardon - Graduate Assistant (Defense)

Pat Welsh - Graduate Assistant (Offense)

Tim Collins - Video Coordinator

Julie DeBuysser - Senior Staff Assistant-Assistant Coaches

Rob Hunt - Head Football Athletic Trainer

Ernest Jones - Director of Player Development and   Engagement

Chad Klunder - Director of Football Operations

Sarah Lawless - Recruiting Services Coordinator

David Peloquin - Director of Football Development

Beth Rex - Director of Football Administration

Joy Schosker - Senior Staff Assistant

 


Returning Lettermen: 37
Off. 13, Def. 22, ST 1
Lettermen Lost: 18

 

2013 Schedule
8/31 Temple
9/7 at Michigan
9/14 at Purdue
9/21 Michigan State
9/28 Oklahoma
10/5 Arizona St (in Arlington)
10/12 OPEN DATE
10/19 USC
10/26 at Air Force
11/2 Navy
11/9 at Pitt
11/16 OPEN DATE
11/23 BYU
11/30 at Stanford

 

Notre Dame Fighting Irish (1994 - Pres)

 

 

2012 TEAM STATS:

 

TEAM STATISTICS 

ND 

OPP 

SCORING 

335 

166 

   Points Per Game 

25.8 

12.8 

FIRST DOWNS 

281 

221 

   Rushing 

127 

74 

   Passing 

137 

131 

   Penalty 

17 

16 

RUSHING YARDAGE 

2462 

1374 

   Yards gained rushing 

2721 

1719 

   Yards lost rushing 

259 

345 

   Rushing Attempts 

506 

396 

   Average Per Rush 

4.9 

3.5 

   Average Per Game 

189.4 

105.7 

   TDs Rushing 

23 

PASSING YARDAGE 

2896 

2597 

   Comp-Att-Int 

226-388-8 

261-434-16 

   Average Per Pass 

7.5 

6.0 

   Average Per Catch 

12.8 

10.0 

   Average Per Game 

222.8 

199.8 

   TDs Passing 

14 

11 

TOTAL OFFENSE 

5358 

3971 

   Total Plays 

894 

830 

   Average Per Play 

6.0 

4.8 

   Average Per Game 

412.2 

305.5 

KICK RETURNS: #-Yards 

30-588 

45-996 

PUNT RETURNS: #-Yards 

21-46 

11-74 

INT RETURNS: #-Yards 

16-172 

8-25 

KICK RETURN AVERAGE 

19.6 

22.1 

PUNT RETURN AVERAGE 

2.2 

6.7 

INT RETURN AVERAGE 

10.8 

3.1 

FUMBLES-LOST 

19-7 

17-7 

PENALTIES-Yards 

71-550 

67-543 

   Average Per Game 

42.3 

41.8 

PUNTS-Yards 

53-2161 

68-2918 

   Average Per Punt 

40.8 

42.9 

   Net punt average 

38.6 

40.2 

KICKOFFS-Yards 

71-4445 

43-2638 

   Average Per Kick 

62.6 

61.3 

   Net kick average 

52.4 

40.1 

TIME OF POSSESSION/Game 

31:44 

28:16 

3RD-DOWN Conversions 

82/177 

65/178 

   3rd-Down Pct 

46% 

37% 

4TH-DOWN Conversions 

3/6 

6/17 

   4th-Down Pct 

50% 

35% 

SACKS BY-Yards 

34-237 

18-106 

MISC YARDS 

TOUCHDOWNS SCORED 

38 

16 

FIELD GOALS-ATTEMPTS 

24-32 

18-24 

ON-SIDE KICKS 

0-0 

0-0 

RED-ZONE SCORES 

(48-60) 80% 

(26-38) 68% 

RED-ZONE TOUCHDOWNS 

(29-60) 48% 

(13-38) 34% 

PAT-ATTEMPTS 

(33-35) 94% 

(16-16) 100% 

ATTENDANCE 

547641 

303357 

   Games/Avg Per Game 

7/78234 

4/75839 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2012 INDIVIDUAL STATS

 

  Overall Individual Statistics    

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
   

RUSHING 

   
   

GP-GS 

   
   

Att 

   
   

Gain 

   
   

Loss 

   
   

Net 

   
   

Avg 

   
   

 TD 

   
   

Long 

   
   

Avg/G 

   
   

RIDDICK, Theo 

   
   

13-8  

   
   

190 

   
   

943 

   
   

26 

   
   

917 

   
   

4.8 

   
   

   
   

55 

   
   

70.5 

   
   

WOOD, Cierre 

   
   

11-4  

   
   

114 

   
   

766 

   
   

24 

   
   

742 

   
   

6.5 

   
   

   
   

68 

   
   

67.5 

   
   

ATKINSON III, George 

   
   

12-3  

   
   

51 

   
   

378 

   
   

17 

   
   

361 

   
   

7.1 

   
   

   
   

56 

   
   

30.1 

   
   

GOLSON, Everett 

   
   

12-11 

   
   

94 

   
   

415 

   
   

117 

   
   

298 

   
   

3.2 

   
   

   
   

27 

   
   

24.8 

   
   

MCDANIEL, Cam 

   
   

13-0  

   
   

23 

   
   

126 

   
   

   
   

125 

   
   

5.4 

   
   

   
   

19 

   
   

9.6 

   
   

HENDRIX, Andrew 

   
   

3-0  

   
   

   
   

48 

   
   

   
   

41 

   
   

5.1 

   
   

   
   

14 

   
   

13.7 

   
   

TOMA, Robby 

   
   

13-6  

   
   

   
   

28 

   
   

   
   

28 

   
   

7.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

2.2 

   
   

Jones, TJ  

   
   

13-11 

   
   

   
   

   
   

   
   

   
   

8.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

0.6 

   
   

NEAL, Davonte' 

   
   

13-0  

   
   

   
   

   
   

   
   

   
   

7.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

0.5 

   
   

REES, Tommy 

   
   

12-2  

   
   

   
   

   
   

15 

   
   

-13 

   
   

-3.2 

   
   

   
   

   
   

-1.1 

   
   

TURK, Ben 

   
   

13-0  

   
   

   
   

   
   

16 

   
   

-16 

   
   

-16.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

-1.2 

   
   

TEAM  

   
   

8-0  

   
   

15 

   
   

   
   

36 

   
   

-36 

   
   

-2.4 

   
   

   
   

   
   

-4.5 

   
   

Total.......... 

   
   

13  

   
   

506 

   
   

2721 

   
   

259 

   
   

2462 

   
   

4.9 

   
   

23 

   
   

68 

   
   

189.4 

   
   

Opponents...... 

   
   

13  

   
   

396 

   
   

1719 

   
   

345 

   
   

1374 

   
   

3.5 

   
   

   
   

55 

   
   

105.7 

   

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
   

PASSING 

   
   

GP-GS 

   
   

Effic 

   
   

Cmp-Att-Int 

   
   

Pct 

   
   

Yards 

   
   

 TD 

   
   

Long 

   
   

Avg/G 

   
   

GOLSON, Everett 

   
   

12-11 

   
   

131.0 

   
   

187-318-6 

   
   

58.8 

   
   

2405 

   
   

12 

   
   

50 

   
   

200.4 

   
   

REES, Tommy 

   
   

12-2  

   
   

124.1 

   
   

34-59-2 

   
   

57.6 

   
   

436 

   
   

   
   

38 

   
   

36.3 

   
   

HENDRIX, Andrew 

   
   

3-0  

   
   

137.4 

   
   

5-7-0 

   
   

71.4 

   
   

55 

   
   

   
   

23 

   
   

18.3 

   
   

TEAM  

   
   

8-0  

   
   

0.0 

   
   

0-3-0 

   
   

0.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

   
   

0.0 

   
   

GOODMAN, John 

   
   

10-1  

   
   

0.0 

   
   

0-1-0 

   
   

0.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

   
   

0.0 

   
   

Total.......... 

   
   

13  

   
   

128.7 

   
   

226-388-8 

   
   

58.2 

   
   

2896 

   
   

14 

   
   

50 

   
   

222.8 

   
   

Opponents...... 

   
   

13  

   
   

111.4 

   
   

261-434-16 

   
   

60.1 

   
   

2597 

   
   

11 

   
   

53 

   
   

199.8 

   

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
   

RECEIVING 

   
   

GP-GS 

   
   

No. 

   
   

Yards 

   
   

Avg 

   
   

 TD 

   
   

Long 

   
   

Avg/G 

   
   

EIFERT, Tyler 

   
   

13-13 

   
   

50 

   
   

685 

   
   

13.7 

   
   

   
   

38 

   
   

52.7 

   
   

Jones, TJ  

   
   

13-11 

   
   

50 

   
   

649 

   
   

13.0 

   
   

   
   

34 

   
   

49.9 

   
   

RIDDICK, Theo 

   
   

13-8  

   
   

36 

   
   

370 

   
   

10.3 

   
   

   
   

24 

   
   

28.5 

   
   

DANIELS, DaVaris 

   
   

11-3  

   
   

31 

   
   

490 

   
   

15.8 

   
   

   
   

45 

   
   

44.5 

   
   

TOMA, Robby 

   
   

13-6  

   
   

24 

   
   

252 

   
   

10.5 

   
   

   
   

27 

   
   

19.4 

   
   

GOODMAN, John 

   
   

10-1  

   
   

   
   

159 

   
   

22.7 

   
   

   
   

50 

   
   

15.9 

   
   

SMITH, Daniel 

   
   

13-4  

   
   

   
   

47 

   
   

6.7 

   
   

   
   

11 

   
   

3.6 

   
   

NIKLAS, Troy 

   
   

13-7  

   
   

   
   

75 

   
   

15.0 

   
   

   
   

30 

   
   

5.8 

   
   

WOOD, Cierre 

   
   

11-4  

   
   

   
   

25 

   
   

5.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

2.3 

   
   

KOYACK, Ben 

   
   

12-1  

   
   

   
   

39 

   
   

13.0 

   
   

   
   

23 

   
   

3.2 

   
   

BROWN, Chris 

   
   

12-4  

   
   

   
   

56 

   
   

28.0 

   
   

   
   

50 

   
   

4.7 

   
   

MCDANIEL, Cam 

   
   

13-0  

   
   

   
   

41 

   
   

20.5 

   
   

   
   

21 

   
   

3.2 

   
   

ATKINSON III, George 

   
   

12-3  

   
   

   
   

   
   

2.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

0.3 

   
   

FERGUSON, Justin 

   
   

11-0  

   
   

   
   

   
   

9.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

0.8 

   
   

NEAL, Davonte' 

   
   

13-0  

   
   

   
   

-5 

   
   

-5.0 

   
   

   
   

   
   

-0.4 

   
   

Total.......... 

   
   

13  

   
   

226 

   
   

2896 

   
   

12.8 

   
   

14 

   
   

50 

   
   

222.8 

   
   

Opponents...... 

   
   

13  

   
   

261 

   
   

2597 

   
   

10.0 

   
   

11 

   
   

53 

   
   

199.8 

   

 

 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (1994 - Pres) 

 

Notre Dame had a magical football season in 2012.  Not many imagined they would play for a national championship when most people felt the Irish were far from one of the two best teams in college football.  But Notre Dame didn’t listen to the doubters and played a very tough schedule and took care of business.  Unfortunately, Alabama exposed Notre Dame in the championship game on January 7th and the Manti Te’o embarrassment took away from what should be a season to remember.  But all wild stories aside, the whole season was a lot of fun because each week was a big story that mattered. This is what Notre Dame should be doing on a regular basis, and this is what the fan base is going to be expecting from now on. 

Brian Kelly might be the second Kelly invited to coach in the NFL, but until then, Brian has upgraded his talent level by improving the infrastructure on the offensive and defensive lines and by improving the overall team speed and athleticism.  So is Notre Dame ready to take the next step? 

On offense, the Irish had an efficient offense in 2012, not explosive.  Everett Golson provided drama and threw Tommy Rees into the spotlight.   The 6-2, 210-pound QB had a few moments of brilliance over the course of his career and has proved he could come in cold off the bench and shine – completing all four of his passes for 43 yards and a score in the win over Stanford last season – but he’s known just as much for his huge mistakes and bad picks at the worst possible times, throwing 14 interceptions to go along with his 20 touchdown passes two years ago. He hit 57% of his throws last year for 436 yards and two scores with two interceptions, and he has shown the potential to be a special player at times.  Rees has all the tools to make the offense click, but now this team is his and he must produce on a more consistent basis. 

With RB's Cierre Wood and Theo Riddick gone after rushing for over 1,600 yards with nine touchdowns, it’s going to take a lot  to get the running game going. George Atkinson III has been a brilliant KOR, and he ripped off 99 rushing yards and two score and 123 yards and a touchdown against Miami, but he only carried the ball 51 times for 361 yards and five touchdowns on the season, averaging 7.1 yards per carry. 


USC transfer Amir Carlisle ran for 118 yards for the Trojans after coming in as an elite, Parade All-American recruit, but he hasn’t been able to do anything yet for the Irish. Injured, he missed all of last year and he’s trying to get past a broken collarbone.  Also in the equation is junior Cam McDaniel, a 5-10, 195-pound part corner and part running back. While he ran for 125 yards and a score. 

Greg Bryant and Tarean Folston, two true freshmen who’ll be given every opportunity to see time right away. Two fantastic recruits, they’re each four-start talents who could’ve gone everywhere, and now they’re needed. The 5-11, 200-pound Bryant ran for over 3,500 yards with 42 touchdowns over the last two years for his high school in Delray Beach.  The 5-10, 190-pound Folston is also from Florida, but unlike Bryant he’s more of a home run hitter.

The Irish lost tight end Tyler Eiftert, who received all-star honors across the board and was one of the nation’s most dangerous weapons. While he was phenomenal, he caught 50 passes with four scores – as did receiver T.J. Jones. The 5-11, 190-pound senior was steady, good for around four catches a game, topping out with seven grabs for 90 yards in the loss to Alabama, and now he has the experience to do even more as a No. 1 target.


6-2, 190-pound junior DaVaris Daniels has a world of big upside with great size and dangerous deep ball potential averaging 15.8 yards per pop catching 31 passes for 490 yards. Also looking to step in and do far more is 6-4, 215-pound senior Daniel Smith, a local product with a phenomenal high school résumé and great size. 


Sophomore Chris Brown is a promising young target who saw time in every game as a true freshman, but he only caught two passes for 56 yards. An elite speedster, the 6-2 172-pounder might be the team’s fastest and most athletic player. 


There’s talent in place, but the true freshmen are the real stars to get excited about with James Onwualu, Torii Hunter, Corey Robinson and Will Fuller all phenomenal talents who’d each be the highlight of just about any receiving recruiting class. The 6-1, 180-pound Fuller is the best prospect of the bunch with good size and a physical style. The 6-0, 180-poun Hunter, the son of the baseball star of the same name, has to get back from a broken leg, but when he’s right, he has gamebreaking ability. At 6-5 and 190 pounds, Robinson, the son of former NBA superstar, David Robinson, is big and ultra-productive, catching 67 passes with 20 touchdowns as a senior. Onwualu is in the mix right away, likely to push Smith for a job, with 6-2, 210-pound size and the all-around ability to be used as a running back and a returner. If needed, he could be moved to defensive back.

Trying to do the impossible, 6-7, 260-pound junior Troy Niklas will replace Eifert, but he’ll be more of a big blocker than a receiver. The former outside linebacker made 20 tackles as a true freshman, and while he has the size and athleticism, he’s not going to be an elite target. 6-4, 250-pound senior Alex Welch has a little bit of experience, but he’s trying to come back healthy after missing all of last year with a knee injury.

Durham Smythe and Mike Heuerman. The new haul of talent for the receiving corps is getting all the press – and rightly so – but as a factory for tight ends, Notre Dame was able to get two phenomenal talents in Smythe and Heuerman, who might be part of the equation right away.

The offensive is led by senior Zack Martin, an all-star and the team’s top offensive lineman over the last three seasons. The 6-4, 304-pound left tackle has 39 straight starts under his belt, and while he’s not massive, he’s strong, sound and athletic.


Next to Martin is 6-3, 321-pound senior Chris Watt, who started every game over the last two years after getting past a foot injury.  While Watt is the team’s star guard, 6-5, 309-pound junior Conor Hanratty is a decent prospect who’ll get a long look at right guard.


It’ll be a fight for Braxston Cave’s starting center job. 6-5, 291-pound junior Matt Hegarty was a decent recruit two years ago who saw time as a special teamer last season. However, he’ll battle with a few other options including Nick Martin, Zach Martin’s younger, smaller brother with 6-4, 294-pound size and decent ability.


6-5, 309-pound senior Christian Lombard might not be Zack Martin as a talent, but he’s a good, sound right tackle who started every game last season and showed the potential to do even more.


The 6-5, 300-pound Steven Elmer, 6-5, 300-pound Colin McGovern, 6-7, 287-pound Hunter Bivin and 6-7, 280-pound Mike McGlinchey are four of the nation’s top tackle prospects in a phenomenal haul in this year’s class, but the 6-5, 305-pound John Montelus is the team’s best recruit for the line.

For all the accolades and attention heaped on Manti Te’o, insiders were quick to say that it wasn’t crazy to suggest that 6-6, 303-pound junior Stephon Tuitt was the team’s best defensive player for a long stretch. He stepped in as a superstar recruit and was every bit as good as advertised considering he was a spot starter, and then he blew up last season making 47 tackles with 12 sacks, 13 tackles for loss and a 77-yard fumble return for a score in the opener against Navy.


Senior Louis Nix is the key to the defensive front.  A huge-bodied run stuffer, he finished with 50 tackles with two sacks and 7.5 tackles for loss. A power player, he could also see a little time as a blocking fullback in power packages. He’ll be backed up by senior Kona Schwenke, a 6-4, 290-pound former end.   


Taking over for Kapron Lewis-Moore on the outside is 6-2, 286-pound sophomore Sheldon Day, who stepped in as a true freshman and was a huge part of the rotation making 23 tackles with two sacks.  He’ll be backed up by senior Tony Springmann, a 6-6, 300-pound tackle who made 11 tackles with a sack and three quarterback hurries in the rotation.


Isaac Rochell, a 6-5, 265-pound end out of Georgia who worked in high school as both an offensive and defensive tackle.

 

No one is expected junior Jarrett Grace to be another Manti Te’o in terms of leadership or all-around playmaking ability, but he showed this offseason that the talent is there to be a top tackler.  With 6-3, 240-pound size and decent range.   He’ll be backed up by senior Kendall Moore, a 6-1, 242-pound senior who saw enough time to make ten tackles last year. 


 Also back is Senior Dan Fox , who came up with 63 tackles with a sack and two tackles for loss. A solid, steady starter, he has good 6-3, 240-pound size and fantastic instincts.  Also working in the mix is 6-1, 245-pound senior Carlo Calabrese, who got past his off-the-field issues of last season with 48 tackles and three tackles for loss as a spot starter and excellent reserve.


6-2, 248-pound senior Danny Spond started 11 times last year after missing the first two games finishing with 39 tackles with a pick.  6-5, 240-pound junior Ben Councell was a tremendous recruit out of North Carolina, but he has yet to shine making just ten tackles last season after not doing anything in his first year.


Senior Prince Shembo went from being a decent spot starter to a key part of the tremendous run defense starting all 13 games making 51 tackles with 7.5 sacks and 10.5 tackles for loss with a team-leading 12 quarterback hurries. The 6-2, 250-pounder is quick off the ball and almost like an extra defensive end.  Also like another defensive end is junior Ishaq Williams, a huge recruit for the program as the 2010 Gatorade New York Player of the Year. 


Jaylon Smith. The best of the great haul of new recruits, the nation’s best outside linebacker prospect has it all with 6-3, 220-pound size with jaw-dropping athleticism, speed and fluid quickness.   

If the secondary could survive last season’s problems with injuries and inexperience, this year’s group should be far better with several of the key parts back. Senior Bennett Jackson came through with 64 tackles with four picks and four more broken up passes. The 6-0, 185-pound former wide receiver has great athleticism and speed, and now he’s a proven tackler.  5-11, 182-pound sophomore KeiVarae Russell will start gig at one corner. The 13-game starter made 59 tackles with two picks in a fantastic true freshman season.   


Lo Wood is back after missing last year with an Achilles heel injury. The 5-11, 195-pounder was one of the team’s top recruits three years ago with tremendous speed and good skills, but he still has to prove himself with just ten career tackles with one interception.   


5-11, 200-pound junior Matthias Farley started 11 games and finishing with 49 tackles to go along with a 49-yard pick against Stanford. The starting safety filled in when injuries hit the secondary, and while he’s not a huge hitter, he’s athletic and moves extremely well. Also back is senior Austin Collinsworth, the 6-1, 202-pounder missed all of last year with a shoulder injury.


Sophomore Nicky Baratti will push hard for a starting safety job after seeing time throughout last year as a key special teamer while making eight tackles with a pick on defense. At 6-0 and 206 pounds he has decent size and tremendous athleticism.  6-0, 198-pound sophomore Elijah Shumate is lightning fast, he could work as a corner if absolutely needed but he’ll stick around at safety.   


Max Redfield. A few strong corner prospects are coming in, but the best new defensive back on the lot should be the 6-2, 195-pound Redfield, an excellent safety option with fantastic smarts and great athleticism. 

This season will be successful if the Irish get back to a BCS game. They’re not going to get the same breaks twice and they’ll be on the wrong side of a close game here and there, but the defense and offensive line are too good, and there’s too much potential on offense, to hope for anything worse than 10-2, which would likely get it done for a BCS bid. Considering the program doesn’t have a set bowl tie-in, either it makes it to a big money game, or some bowl will have to break a contract to make it happen.

 

Notre Dame Fighting Irish (1994 - Pres)

 

 

 


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