South Bend Tribune:
That’s why Walls refused to flinch when the Irish stared another November collapse in the face. Losses to Navy and Tulsa didn’t necessarily write the season off as a failure. But, they could have.
“I was trying to get the other guys to see that,” Walls said, imploring his mates to finish what they had started. “‘This really isn’t nuthin’; we’ve got so much ahead of us. If we just keep believin’ and keep goin’ after it every day, it’ll work out.’”
Then came wins over Utah, Army and Southern Cal.
“The guys, especially the seniors, they didn’t want to have another season where we coulda, woulda, shoulda,” Walls said. “There (were) a lot of games we could have won and should have won (last season), but that’s not how it went. We had a chance to make a run here and get into a good bowl game against a good team.
“Our confidence level has risen, and our belief and faith in the coaching staff.”
Chicago Breaking Sports:
But for now, Stephon Tuitt remains in the fold, even after the gem of the Irish’s 2011 recruiting haul visited national-title game participant Auburn over the weekend. Rivals.com’s No. 2 defensive end and No. 26 prospect overall told AuburnSports.com that he has wandering eyes but not yet a change of heart.
“I’m still committed to Notre Dame, but I am looking around,” Tuitt told the Web site. “A school would have to sweep me off my feet. If they did that, I have a feeling I’d move them to the top.”
Apparently, the Irish will have to sweat out one more Tuitt visit to a potential suitor.
“Right. One thing me and Manti want to do is we want to strike fear in our opponents,” Smith said. “Not by other things, other antics, but we want to strike fear in our opponents by smash-mouth football. We want to come downhill and hit you in the mouth. … If we can do that and force Miami to beat us with throwing the ball, I feel like we’ll have a good opportunity to win this game.”
No matter the outcome against the Hurricanes, Smith is pleased with how he edited his final chapter in South Bend.
“It means a lot,” he said. “I love Notre Dame … from the bottom of my heart. I was joking with the guys in the linebacker room, talking about committing and all that, and I said I was committed to Notre Dame when I was 4 years old. I made my verbal commitment that day. I love this place and just to leave it in better shape then when I came in, it’s a great feeling.”