After the National Championship game when many Irish fans let their heads fall in disappointment, and there are many factors involving their loss, but you have to give credit to Alabama for their performance. Alabama showed their supremacy on their first drive, which was an 82 yard drive that only took 2 minutes and 57 seconds and was capped off by a Lacy touchdown run. The “best defense in the country” looked like the old Notre Dame defenses of the Charlie Weis era. The Irish defense played out of character and missed more tackles than we have seen all year, but adding to that they were simply outplayed by a better Alabama team.
Alabama’s blocking scheme in this game was almost perfect, even if they didn’t block the backside linebacker there was someone in his way at all times. Manti got caught up in traffic many times, which was unavoidable at times. Tuitt was almost non-existent, but I will tell you one thing Louis Nix III played pretty well, but did pick a side every now and then, but then again that was probably part of the defensive call and the linebacker just didn’t fill. The arm tackling drove me insane; I have seen better form tackling out of middle school kids. What I want to know is why? Why did Notre Dame play like they did? The fact that Alabama is better I will give them that, but missed tackles, missed assignments, and they played scared. It had to be the nerves or the fact they hadn’t played a game in 44 days. There is no excuse for the way they played, but they now know what it takes to be the best.
They started behind and all Irish fans know that we have trouble scoring quickly and that showed Monday. I think we came out throwing not because they were down, but because Coach Kelly knew it would be next to impossible to run the ball effetely all night. Golson did some growing up and didn’t have a bad game, but the offensive line didn’t play to their potential and the play calling didn’t make much sense to me. For example on the 4th and 5 that Notre Dame went for, why would you run 3 streaks and one underneath route when they had been keying on the running backs out of the backfield all night? Notre Dame now knows they have to get that much better, since 32 yards rushing won’t get it done against Alabama.
Overall, Notre Dame weren’t themselves they played scared and looked tense. It was a terrible end to a great season. We can all say as fans that this year was great and Notre Dame is on its way back to where it needs to be. Coach Kelly will work harder than ever and he will keep the Irish relevant as long he is the head football coach at Notre Dame.