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With a couple of pretty good but frustrating seasons the past 2 years, back to back strong recruiting classes and an almost magical start to the 2013 class. Is Notre Dame one program changing victory away from turning the corner to a BCS caliber team? When I look at our schedule this year it looks ridiculously difficult and probably is. I'm going to assume that we find a way to beat Navy and Purdue. More for peace of mind than anything. I'm not even getting into the QB and DB situation. This takes us to East Lansing. Is Notre Dame going to face "Super Bowl Sparty", That loves to ruin Notre Dame's promising starts to a season? Or will we possibly face the Spartans whose season started off with a disappointing loss to Boise St. at home and won't be as amped to play ND? MSU plays only 2 prime time games this season and the Irish will most likely get "Super Bowl Sparty", if I had to guess. MSU had a lot of key loses and questions but what team doesn't.
Michigan...I don't care if they lose to Bama by 70 in the first week, or beat them. I hate calling a game a "must win" but this year's UM is as close of a must win game as there is. Bottle up Denard for all four quarters and final possession, especially the last one. I believe we have more talent than Michigan, I believe our coaches are equal or better than Michigan. As of right now I just don't know that Notre Dame's coaches and players believe they can beat them. That can easily be changed and should be, considering the Irish should be going for 4 consecutive wins and not Michigan. Losing 3 games in a row in the same fashion on the final drive is a disturbing pattern but not an irreversible one. The Irish just need to believe they can win. I'm not saying that ND will run the table nor do I have any pipe dreams of a national title this year. This program just needs to get the belief or swagger back somehow someway. It only takes one year to regain that power of belief back, Michigan is a perfect example of how the whole perception of a program can be changed in just one season. Every regime post Holtz has had a "Return to Glory" season at least once. I believe this program is stronger and better coached than that of any in the Davie, Willingham, or Weis era's. This year I can easily see Notre Dame going 6-6 just as I can see them going 10-2. It all comes down to believing and the momentum will follow. If somehow this Notre Dame team can find a way to "overachieve" or play to it's highest potential in September the sky is the limit. Most Irish fans believe that 2013 is the year that the Turning Point or the stars align for the Irish and that very well may be the case. This program needs to BELIEVE that this year is the turning point not next year. The most important game since the 1993 FSU game was in 2005 against USC. it only takes one game of momentum, or one BCS caliber season to possibly right the ship and get that winning attitude back. Will that "Program Changing" game like 2005 USC game come in 2012 or 2013? It comes every single season and it only take one game to change it.
2005 USC game
The Bush push game. I felt for 10 seconds that Notre Dame had indeed finally returned. When the clock hit 0:00 it was pure elation for 10 seconds. I still wished one coach on the ND sideline would've called timeout before the sneak. Weis called a great game on offense. I remember on a few different occasions Quinn sneaking it up the middle for some 4-5 yard gains on 1st and 2nd down plays. I've never seen that before or since. Fasano's fumble after the long gain at SC's 25 cost us and DJ Fitzpatrick missing the 35 yard field goal, that would've extended the Irish lead to 6 late in the 4th.
I will never understand how on USC's 4th and 9 play, how the ball seemed to disappear right through Ambrose Wooden's body. The coverage was almost there.
Corey Mays delivered one of the best hits I can remember in Notre Dame history, on Leinart's scramble toward the pylon," the play before the Bush push". According to the laws of physics, Leinart should've made it into end zone. Corey May's shear will and determination won over those laws on that play.
I think it's interesting to look back on the 2005 regular season. After Notre Dame lost to SC, Texas finished the season 12-0 and was a lock for the National Title game. Notre Dame went on to run the table in the regular season. Only 2 other teams finished the 2005 regular season with one loss, Penn St and West Virginia. Penn St. was ranked one spot below Notre Dame at number 10 in the rankings, when they were upset by the Wolverines (same week as #9 Notre Dame lost to SC). West Virginia just shot into the rankings at number 18 that week. If Wooden knocks that ball down... if the ball bounced in the field of play, instead of out of bounds on Corey Mays goal line stand on Leinart.... If the Notre Dame Defense could have stonewalled the"Bush Push" ....... Notre Dame would have played Texas in the BCS National Title Game... Kind of hard to Imagine.
Would Notre Dame have won? Probably 1 out of 10 games played against Vince Young and Texas. I was born in 1984. ND and SC in 2005 was one game.... One game that could have brought Notre Dame Football back from the dead. That "one game" or "one play" was the most important moment in Notre Dame football since Gordon's kick knuckle balled through the uprights in 1993. I just hope whenever the next time, that one play or one game arises again, whether it be 2, 5, or however many years from now. I hope her "Loyal Sons" in the future can find a way to "WAKE UP THE ECHOES" and I'll be there to see it when it happens.
This post was edited by arahop on 6/1/2012 at 3:26 PM
Good post. I, for one, believe that we will have a big time season, unless Rees plays then we will suck. It has to be Golson.
I always start off feeling pessimistic about the upcoming season. QB issue, CB issue, no Floyd like receiver and a tough schedule. But I always end up being a bit more optimistic. More appropriate QB in Golson ( hopefully), Spread the ball to more wide receivers, not just Floyd. CBs are new, but quick, and have a blue collar kind of attitude. Defense great, OL great, Deep at running back and tight end. I foresee Golson starting, a two tight end set most of the time and smash mouth football for first game or two. Gradually spreading the offense, slowly getting Golson to pass more. A few wins under our belt builds confidence and we shock a few people with some lopsided wins. A few hiccups along the way and finish 9-3. JMO. Maybe just overly optimistic.
I find it hare to believe a 10-1 Irish team would have made it to the NC game with a loss to an unranked MSU. USC probably would have jumped in the rankings again with dominate wins against 2 top 25 teams. It would have probably been 93 all over again
This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by 19BlueAndGold85 on 6/1/2012 at 9:12 PM
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