Friday, September 9, 2011
Week 2: Did you know?
By Matt Fortuna
Here are some notes on Notre Dame and Michigan before they take the field at the Big House this Saturday. As always, thanks to ESPN Stats & Information for many of these nuggets.
Both Notre Dame and Michigan enter this game unranked for the fourth time in the past five years. Before 2007, they never played each other when neither was ranked during the poll era (since 1936). Before then, the last time they played each other and neither was ranked was in 1909.
Notre Dame and Michigan rank second and first, respectively, in all-time winning percentage among FBS schools (Notre Dame .732, Michigan .735). They rank third and first in all-time wins among FBS schools (Notre Dame 845, Michigan 885).
Brian Kelly and Brady Hoke faced each other three times as head coaches in the MAC, with Kelly's Central Michigan teams going 3-0 against Hoke's Ball State teams from 2004-06.
Michigan defensive coordinator Greg Mattison was a Notre Dame assistant from 1997-2004, serving as the Fighting Irish's defensive coordinator from 1997-2001 before becoming the defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator from 2002-2004.
Though this will be Michigan Stadium's first night game, the Wolverines have played the Irish three other times under the lights, losing in South Bend, Ind., in 1982, 1988 and 1990.
Michigan is seeking its third straight win over Notre Dame. The Wolverines won the first eight series meetings from 1887-1908 but haven't won three straight against the Irish in the past 30 meetings.
Michigan has won five of the past six meetings with Notre Dame in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Michigan has won its past 10 September games, while Notre Dame has lost its past four September games.
Michigan's defense has surrendered 211 plays of at least 10 yards since the start of 2010, the fourth-most of any FBS team during that stretch.
Denard Robinson's 58 runs of at least 10 yards is the most of any FBS player since the start of the 2010 season.
Robinson is 45 yards away from becoming the ninth player in Michigan history to amass 5,000 yards of total offense.
Since the start of 2010, Robinson has completed 63.3 percent of his passes inside the pocket for an average of 8.7 yards per pass. Outside the pocket, Robinson has hit 54.9 percent of his passes for 7.6 yards per pass.
Notre Dame quarterbacks were 2-for-2 passing to Michael Floyd in the red zone last week and just 2-for-6 when targeting anyone else.
In third down passing last week, Dayne Crist completed 1-of-5 throws for no first downs and tossed an interception. Tommy Rees, meanwhile, was 3-for-4 with three first downs.
Crist was 1-for-6 with an interception last week during throws of 6-14 yards. Rees was 10-of-10 with one touchdown and one pick.
Last week against South Florida, Floyd was the target of three of Crist's throws, catching two for 37 yards in the first half. Floyd was the target of 12 of Rees' throws, catching 10 for 117 yards and two touchdowns in the second half.
Among active FBS players, Floyd ranks sixth in receptions (183), third in receiving yards (2,693) and second in touchdown catches (30).
Notre Dame has allowed just five offensive touchdowns in its last six games.
ESPN's Desmond Howard, the 1991 Heisman Trophy winner, will be honored at halftime by Michigan and the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame.