Online Now 795

Week 5 Opponent Recaps

Notre Dame's strong schedule once again looks a bit more manageable after a disappointing week for the 12 teams on its schedule. Stanford fell to No. 18 in both polls after losing to Washington on Thursday night. There are no undefeated teams left on the Irish slate.

Wake Forest receiver Michael Campanaro broke his hand in a 34-27 loss to Duke.

Overall, Notre Dame's opponents went 3-5 in the final weekend of September with four teams taking an early bye week. That brings the overall record for those teams this season to 30-21. The Stanford loss allowed an idle Irish team to bump one spot higher to ninth and 10th in the AP and Coaches' polls, respectively.

Navy (1-3)
Head coach Ken Niumatalolo said his team was “as low as you can be” after losing 12-0 to San Jose State in a touchdown-less game. Navy failed to score for the first time in six years and had their second-lowest offensive output in a decade (144 total yards). Junior quarterback Trey Miller was yanked during the fourth quarter and might lose his starting job when the Midshipmen face Air Force next week.

Purdue (3-1)
Purdue had no problem scoring points in a 51-41 shootout win over Marshall. Quarterback Caleb TerBush threw four touchdown passes and the Boilermaker defense returned two interceptions for scores on a day that rewrote several records in West Lafayette. Marshall attempted (68) and completed (45) more passes than any opponent in Purdue’s history. Ricardo Allen and Josh Johnson’s pick-sixes on back-to-back drives in the second quarter proved to be the difference.

Michigan State (3-2)
The Spartans lost 17-16 to Ohio State to open Big Ten play on Saturday. Buckeye coach Urban Meyer described the close game as “two sledgehammers going at each other.” Ohio State quarterback Braxston Miller, shaken up twice in the game, ran for more than 100 yards and completed a 65-yard pass to Devin Smith in the third quarter for what was the game winning score. Michigan State’s Dan Conroy added a 48-yard field goal in the final quarter, but missed an important 42-yarder earlier in the game.

Michigan (2-2)
The Wolverines were idle a week after visiting South Bend. They will play at Purdue next Saturday.

Miami (4-1)
The Hurricanes restored a bit of their South Florida swagger with a second straight last-second victory. Junior Stephen Morris connected with sophomore Phillip Dorsett for a 62-yard score to clinch a 44-37 win against N.C. State in the final seconds. Morris set an ACC record with 566 passing yards a week after throwing for 436 yards to beat Georgia Tech in overtime. N.C. State turned the ball over six times to help the ‘Canes.

Stanford (3-1)
The Cardinal never found an offensive rhythm in their first loss of the season Thursday night, 17-13 to Washington. The Huskies finished the upset by completing a 35-yard touchdown pass with less than five minutes to play. Stanford ran for only 70 yards against an underwhelming Washington front seven and several key dropped passes kept the air attack in check.

Brigham Young (3-2)
BYU rolled to a 47-0 win over Hawaii Friday night behind a defense that has not allowed a point in its past nine quarters of play. Freshman quarterback Taysom Hill threw for 112 yards and ran for 143 while replacing Riley Nelson, who has a back injury. As a team the Cougars racked up 396 rushing yards and allowed only 41 in a game that got out of hand in the third quarter.

Oklahoma (2-1)
The Sooners did not play one week after losing to Kansas State on their home turf. They play Texas Tech on the road next Saturday.

Pittsburgh (2-2)
Pitt also took their bye this weekend after back-to-back wins evened out a dismal start to the year. They play Syracuse on Friday night this week.

Boston College (1-3)
The Eagles offense did enough to hang with No. 17 Clemson through most of their game Saturday, but eventually Boston College fell 45-31 to the visiting Tigers. Chase Rettig threw for 341 and three touchdowns, but the Eagles weren’t able to establish a complementary running game. DeAndre Hopkins had 11 catches for 197 yards to lead the Tigers offense.

Wake Forest (3-2)
Duke broke a 12-game losing streak to Wake Forest with a 34-27 win in Winston-Salem. The Blue Devils set up two fourth-quarter touchdowns with turnovers to break a 20-20 tie and then held on in the final minutes. The bigger loss for Wake Forest, though, was probably wide receiver Michael Campanaro, who missed most of the game after breaking a bone in his right hand. He is expected to miss the next 3-4 weeks.

Southern California (3-1)
USC did not play Saturday. They will face their third Pac-12 opponent of the season on Thursday night in Salt Lake City against Utah.

  • I'm surprised it hasn't happened to this point, but at some point haters are going to point to an "easy schedule" as a key to ND's success. Which is fine since when that happens ND is usually major bowl bound.

    Navy is not holding up their end of the bargain as they have in recent years. Purdue may really end up the strong team ND fans hoped they would be after our close win. MSU and UM are both now unranked (such weak opponents, if you don't mention they were each top 10 at one point lol). The "weak teams" (Pitt, BC, Wake) have embarrassing losses to their credit to discredit ND but enough good performances (Pitt beats VaTech, BC hangs with Clemson) to keep ND fans aware. Stanford, OU, and USC have shown to be strong, but losses have dropped their cachet from potential showdowns.

    The end result is still this being one of the toughest schedules in the nation, no matter what spin is put on the ball moving forward. SEC love seems to have pushed perception past us for Florida being the world-beaters with LSU, UGA, and So Carolina, currently 4, 5, 6.

  • Agree ^^. Our daunting schedule has looked more manageable every week.

    The one thing that jumps out at me is the passing completed against a Purdue defense that really put ND's offense in a jam. I know our offense is weak. But after the Purdue game, several thought we just possibly played against the best Defense in the B1G. Then several said the same thing after MSU.
    Now, I am beginning to see that the offense really has started slowly, and underperformed against not very good defenses. I am hoping it all gels sooner rather than later. We have such great talent on the offense. Looking for a real break out one of these weeks.
    Miami's defense might just be the cure we need for our Offense's malaise.

    "Having the right to do something doesn't mean it's right to do it." -- Chief Justice Warren Burger

  • Teams that are good always seem to have "weaker" schedules. Teams that are not so good always appear to have "tougher" schedules.

    "The schedules wouldn't look so difficult if we were better."
    — Lou Holtz shortly after taking the Notre Dame job.

    So elementary, but so true.

  • I love that Lou Hotz quote.
    You can use that every week, as far as i'm concerned.

    "Having the right to do something doesn't mean it's right to do it." -- Chief Justice Warren Burger

Already have an account? Sign In