Notre Dame’s Pitt Hangover


Hangover’s are real and in a lot of cases, severe. They are, in essence, a corrective reaction of the body. So what kind of hangover will Notre Dame fans experience now that the Irish are firmly entrenched in the College Football Playoff discussion- and are now going on the road and destroying opponents like Pitt 42-30 (that score doesn’t do the beatdown of points justice).

Let’s have a little hair of the dog as we look back to move forward. Please don’t be offended as this is entirely offensive.

DeShone Kizer The Magnificent

It’s a story that’s so good, it’s hardly believable. It’s a story that comes off as so natural, it has to be the truth. DeShone Kizer was Notre Dame’s 3rd string quarterback, a little more than 5 months ago. After the departure of Everett Golson, he naturally ascended to second string behind Malik Zaire.

Nov 7, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish quarterback DeShone Kizer (14) runs the ball against the Pittsburgh Panthers during the second quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Fast forward to Pitt… DeShone Kizer throws for 5 touchdowns and just for laughs, he also gets himself a rushing touchdown. WHAT IS THIS KID DOING? Doesn’t Kizer realize that the entire Notre Dame fanbase was in Malik Zaire’s corner? How will we survive another offseason quarterback battle? (You know one is coming, right?)

Kizer is a star. The “in the making” part is long gone after a couple of 4th quarter comebacks, record setting plays and performances, winning, and putting the Irish in place to contend for a national championship in the month of November. Kizer is magnificent, and he’s only getting started.

Running Wild, A Cautionary Tale

Do you follow recruiting? Perhaps a better question would be, do you like be wrong most of the time about the futures of a couple dozen 18 year old kids each year? Recruiting, for the majority of fans is nothing more than star-watching, or star-collecting to be more precise. WHAT IS THE STAR AVERAGE OF THIS CLASS? HOW MANY 5 STARS DID WE SIGN? WHY ARE ALL THE DEFENSIVE ENDS ONLY 3 STARS.

Nov 7, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish running back C.J. Prosise (20) runs the ball past Pittsburgh Panthers defensive lineman Ejuan Price (5) during the first quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

And on and on.

Nothing confounds the star-watching of recruitniks more than what is happening at Notre Dame right now- which feels a lot like the DeShone Kizer story (also known as things that happen after injuries). Go on back to spring ball again. Notre Dame had a 1,2 punch of Tarean Folston and Greg Bryant at running back. The two were 4 and five star players out of Florida and Folston was the returning leading rusher for the Irish. Folston was primed to have a big year and the expectations for Bryant might have been even bigger given the discussions with “experts.” Brian Kelly moved CJ Prosise over to running back as the Irish have a plethora of other slot receivers, and despite not having ever played running back at any level, Prosise would give the Irish a little more depth.

This depth would help until a couple of freshman were to arrive in June. One, was a highly touted, 4 star running back from Florida in Dexter Williams. The other, was a 3 star running back from Pennsylvania that most thought might make a contribution sometime after about 3 years. His name is Josh Adams.

Here we sit, and we all damn near choked when we saw CJ Prosise leave the Pitt game with an injury. Then, we all stood up and shouted in glee as we watched Josh Adams run for 147 yards on 20 carries. Those were two former 3 star kids from Pennsylvania and Virginia that we watched on Saturday- and all year now. Adams is averaging over 7 yards a carry this year and has been a surprise to everyone but the coaching staff. His performance against Pitt, was better than good as it showed everything we want out of a running back. Speed and power.

Don’t be scared- but do be warned. Recruiting rankings are important but also ridiculous and right now, the Irish are running wild.

Full On Fuller

Will someone please make some t-shirts or something for Will Fuller? With out using his likeness of course. I just feel like we need to do something to pump him up in front of the country. Fuller has 900 yards and 12 touchdowns this season (152 yards and 3 touchdowns were against Pitt) and it still seems like no one outside of the Notre Dame bubble gives a crap.

If he were two inches taller or if his recruiting ranking coming out of high school would have been higher, maybe the rest of the country would give him the respect he deserves. Hell, he at least deserves the hate that Notre Dame stars generally get from the rest of the country. Right now it is more like apathy- and that’s just wrong on any level.

Not even Fuller is all that full of himself. His quiet way of doing business is too quiet. We need a riot as this star continues to shine and win games. He has a chance to end his career at Notre Dame with better stats than Floyd, Tate, and Samardzija. Think about that for a minute, and then go and tell your neighbor.