Nov. 17, 2012; South Bend, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish linebacker Manti Te

Wake Forest-Notre Dame: The Positives

Everett Golson Continues Development

Golson led the Notre Dame offense against Wake Forest to a 38-0 score that resulted in a career passing day for Everett. He completed 20 of 30 passes (66.6%) for 346 yards 3 touchdowns and 1 interception. Golson’s best throws of the day were to T.J. Jones on an out and up route for a touchdown and a fade to Tyler Eifert in the endzone. Even though Everett didn’t have any yards rushing, he didn’t need to run simply because he had so much time to throw in the pocket. The only running he did is when he scrambled a little bit to give himself extra time on occasion, but he seemed more comfortable back there. The progressions are smoother from 1st option to 2nd option in the passing game and he doesn’t seem to panic if the 1st option isn’t there. Golson is in a good stage of his development, but needs to bring his A+ game to USC for all 4 quarters.

Cierre Wood Runs Wild

Last year, Wood was a 1,000 yard rusher for the Irish and due to his suspension he missed two games and hasn’t carried the ball much yet this season. Riddick has been getting the majority of the carries, but Cierre was on a mission Saturday gaining 150 yards on 11 carries, which is 13.6 yards per carry average and a touchdown. In my opinion the most complete back out of all of the running backs, who can use his speed, agility, or strength to make guys miss. If Theo is featured in the pass game more and more then look for Wood to get many of the carries and big plays.

Defense, Defense, Defense

After the shut out of Wake Forest, Notre Dame is still the number 1 scoring defense in the entire nation. Not only that, but they have only given up 9 touchdowns this season (ranked first) and Alabama has given up 14 touchdowns (which is ranked second). I thought the defense tackled very well and the defensive line had a lot of pressure on the quarterback at all times. As the season went on you can really see how the secondary has improved overall. The beginning of the year was very bad, missed assignments, confusion, missed tackles, but now they look like a united group that refuses to give up big plays. It will be exciting to watch how they do against two very good receivers from USC.

Manti Te’o in His Last Home Game

Manti had a season low 6 tackles against Wake Forest, but that didn’t matter. When the PA announcer introduced Manti Te’o for the last time at Notre Dame Stadium everyone was filled with emotion. Leis were being waved around by all that had them, people were crying, and I got chills just watching it. All Irish fans will miss Te’o the Hawaiian Hitman, but we still have two more games, with the first being USC, which was where Manti was supposed to go. With Kansas State and Oregon losing, Manti’s Heisman hopes are very realistic now. He just has to keep doing what he does best and things will fall into place.

Tags: Football Notre Dame Fighting Irish

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