Subway started this whole Irish Gathering thing and now he’s ending it – assuming the world ends after this week. Otherwise I don’t see much reason we can’t do it all again next year.
- Regardless of what you may have heard and what may happen, what do you think should be the fate of Charlie Weis? Please give an explanation in detail along with a possible replacement if you said… FIRED. No Urban Meyer bullshit here. He’s not coming. Get over it.
Not to continue the rather insane comparisons I keep seeing to Faust, but it would be a thing of beauty if he’d step down. I’m convinced the guy loves ND. I want ND to love him back. Weis has done the program a tremendous service in both upping the quality of recruiting for the Irish and in putting the Irish in the BCS twice in the last 3 years. Let’s not forget that the Irish hadn’t seen the inside of a BCS bowl since Bob Davie until Weis got here. I think there are major steps to rebuilding the Irish program that Weis has already taken, and somebody, be it him or his replacement, will get to enjoy some serious fruits from all of that tireless labor. So in a perfect world, according to script, Weis should step aside. Then we could have him at the bookstore all the time for autograph signings as well! If he doesn’t step down, which I don’t expect him to do, then I think he’ll get one more year to show off what he can do with his harvest of all that talent. And really, I’ll be cheering for him because I’ll be cheering for the Irish. I want the guy to succeed, and if he’s here in 2009, I’d give him a 50/50 shot of doing so.
- Recruiting. Colin Cowherd has been murdering the recruiting services and Notre Dame. He thinks that the recruiting services rank Irish recruits higher than what they should be because of a marketing plan. Everyone else on the outside is falling in line with this thought. What are your opinions? Please explain and provide a solution.
Colin Cowherd wouldn’t know a well expressed thought if it beat him over the head with a brick and left him in a desert to die, but wouldn’t you love to see it anyway? I digress. Coherd’s contentions may have been true at one point, but now it’s just as easy to look up who else is actually recruiting these kids as it is to look up their star rating. I think if Urban Meyer is doing all he can to “poach” many of our commitments, or Poodle Pete is visiting our commitments as often as he can, then it’s a safe bet these guys have talent – lots of talent. Also, this had better be the last time I ever have to even give a moment’s thought about what Cowherd says or someone’s going to lose a knee cap.
- I made a comparison in a poorly written post about this team mirroring the 2004 team. I generally don’t like doing comparisons to other years, but I felt it was valid. What is your take? Is the 2008 version of ND like the 2004 team, and do you think the 2009 team could have similar results to the team in 2005?
Well, I seem to recall that everyone “knew” that in 2004 Darius Walker should be the starting tailback over Ryan Grant. Why I bring this up is that even though Armando Allen seems to have broken out as the #1A tailback for this edition of the Irish, I’m not sure “everyone” would come to a real consensus as to whether or not that’s the best course of action for the Irish. So when you try to extrapolate that into what we might be able to expect from the 2009 edition, I have to pause and wonder what it means that we still don’t have a tailback who makes me go “wow.” I see 3 tailbacks with plenty of potential for such wow-ness, but I’ve yet to actually be wowed this year. If 2009 wants to look like 2005, then 2009 will need someone to fit the Darius Walker mold: Almost super-human vision, ability to move a pile, awesome pass protection blocking, excellent pass catching ability, great ability to run screens, and more endurance than an Iron Man contestant.
- Is Michael Floyd the Notre Dame team MVP? Why? If not, who then? House Rock Built’s recent post on the “progress” of the Irish offense would certainly seem to indicate so, but I’m going to give the honor to everyone’s favorite special teams specialist, Mike Anello. The guy’s so amazing that I’m sure there’s a movie producer wondering if they can name a movie “Mike.” Could be a tough sell, but for the Irish, this kid has made some tremendous plays to help either keep momentum in the Irish’s hands or swing it back their way. This isn’t meant to take anything away from Mike Floyd, of course. I just think Floyd will have the opportunity to win MVP multiple times in the future, so let’s give it to Anello for now. That said, I’ve been mystified why so many of Anello’s tremendous plays haven’t helped fuel a “fire” in this Irish squad. Either something else on the sidelines is dousing the flames, or there’s something really wrong with the players’ ability to feed off of his inspiration. Momentum for this Irish squad never seems to snowball in their favor. It might swing in their favor, but it never just takes over in favor of the Irish. And that’s really, really strange for a college football team.
- What is Notre Dame’s biggest problem schematically and mentally?
The offensive line. I figure there must be 2 problems here: 1) The players on the OL still seem quite confused about which bodies they’re supposed to be blocking. For example, nobody ever seemed to even notice Syracuse’s nose tackle last weekend. 2) The attitude I’d been hoping to see from the Irish OL this year has been nearly non-existent except when they face vastly inferior squads like Michigan (sucks!) or Purdue. Then they just sort of behave like bullies. But as soon as they go up against anyone competent, they also behave like your typical bully and curl up in a fetal position until it’s all over. Also, the entire squad seems to get lazy as soon as the offense gets anywhere near the opposition’s 20 yards line, or, as I like to call it, “Krypton.” Maybe the shadow of the goal-posts, lurking so near, blocks out enough of Earth’s yellow sun to render the OL powerless. It also apparently renders them highly susceptible to unbelievably stupid penalties.
- Notre Dame is a 30 point underdog to U$C. It’s safe to say that none of us thought that ND would ever be that big of an underdog in this rivalry game. Your thoughts and please include a prediction for the game.
Honestly, I’m just surprised SoCal wasn’t favored by at least that much last year, but I guess they were going through various QB questions and if I recall correctly, they’d just lost to Stanford 2 weeks prior. And they were ranked #14 versus their current #5 ranking, so they probably weren’t really worried about “style points” to get back into National Championship contention. I think Vegas odds-makers figure if SoCal can take control of this game, they’ll do all the “campaigning” they can in the form of scoring. Still, I expect ND to play like a hungry team. I expect them to be prepared. I expect them to make plays. I expect them to win 30-28 after a last-second 45 yard field goal by Walker because wouldn’t that be a freaking great way to end the season for this kid?