Monday, September 10, 2012
Notre Dame weekend rewind
By Matt Fortuna
Here's one last look back at Notre Dame's 20-17 win over Purdue:
The good: Notre Dame is 2-0 for the first time since 2008. Remember, the Irish were 0-2 a year ago. They are Nos. 20 and 19 in the AP and coaches' poll, respectively. They overcame a number of injuries to pull out a tight win that, frankly, they probably don't finish last season. Tommy Rees proved he wasn't rattled by the offseason, or outside distractions, either.
The bad: Those injuries made things difficult. Among those to leave the game were Kapron Lewis-Moore, Sheldon Day, Ishaq Williams, Jamoris Slaughter, DaVaris Daniels and Tyler Eifert. Manti Te'o got banged up, too, and Nick Tausch missed the game with a groin injury. All should be good to go Saturday.
The ugly: Eight penalties after a flag-less performance against Navy was not what anyone had in mind. Notre Dame having to burn all of its timeouts with more than 11 minutes left in the fourth quarter was probably not part of the plan, either.
Biggest personnel change not involving a QB: Carlo Calabrese returned from suspension and played inside, with Dan Fox, who usually starts there, moving to the dog, where Ben Councell would be. Coach Brian Kelly said afterward that he wanted Councell "to see the game from the sideline," adding that the game plan for Navy was different a week earlier.
Next up: Notre Dame travels to East Lansing, Mich., to face rival Michigan State. We all know what happened last time the Irish walked into Spartan Stadium. And we all remember how the Irish took care of business last year. As will be the case with most games this season, the spotlight will be on each quarterback and the Irish's offensive line play, as Sparty brings in a very talented defensive line.