In the midst of "Tommygate" and the aftermath of all that is to follow the events of early Thursday morning, we here at One Foot Down will try to go about our business as normally as we possibly can by rolling out a non-Tommygate referenced version of Five Wide Fullbacks. If you are still feeling the need to debate the problem of binge-drinking on college campuses, how uncool the SBPD is, what Carlo really meant by "My people will get you!" and whether the mystery vigilante cabbie was actually Batman, feel free to fulfill those needs here. As for this week’s 5WF, I’ll do my best to keep calm and carry on.
Questions and answers after the jump
You just landed a top-secret role as chief consultant to Notre Dame, specializing in all football-related affairs. You are allowed to change one thing concerning the program, no questions asked. What is it & why?
As you know I’m usually the basketball guy around here (like my moniker suggests) so I’ve been watching a lot of NBA Playoff basketball lately and couldn’t help but notice how almost every arena has everyone in the same color coded t-shirt thus leading to a unified and even more intimidating home court advantage. Check out this pic from Oklahoma CitySeminoles vs Fighting Irish coverage.
Issues like the jumbotron and field turf have been beaten to death on every ND forum imaginable, including ours, and seems to have no consensus but I would think that having Adidas provide everyone with the same colored shirt would not cause the Harumphers to get all riled up about it. We have a unique advantage this season in that the color of "The Shirt" is the same color as our home jersey so instead of feeble and failed attempts at "Green Outs," with about a $100,000 worth of t-shirt sponsorship per home game (so $600,000 total per season – a price that Adidas combined with Coca Cola, Xerox and other companies associated with Notre Dame would be happy to pay to have their logo on the back) Notre Dame Stadium can have a united color for every home game and I would not cringe at every bird-eye view of the stadium captured by the blimp this season.
If 20,000 people in Oklahoma City willingly do it 40+ times a season, I’m pretty sure 80,000 in Notre Dame stadium would be willing to do it six times a year. Let's just make sure most of the shirts are L-XXL so folks can wear it above what they came in wearing.
Each player has a unique way of touching the "Play Like a Champion Today" sign on their way to the field. Tell us how you would personalize your touch.
I’ve done this before (senior year when we were allowed into the locker rooms to take pictures and stuff) and I would do it as my personal pre-game touch.
1. Lightly punch the word "Champion"
2. Hit the top left corner of the sign then drag fist down the left side and then side punch the left hand corner twice
3. Feel like a badass
You're the producer of a new 30 minute pre-game show on NBC Sports and are tasked with creating a handful of recurring features each week. What would you incorporate into the broadcast?
For the only college football program with a national television contract, Notre Dame sure as hell doesn’t do a great job of showing off the university to the rest of the country. Much of the University is still shrouded and unless mystery and intrigue was the concept Notre Dame was going for, a few shots of the golden dome, Touchdown Jesus and a "What Would You Fight For?" video at halftime does not do Our Lady’s University justice.
I would use those six segments to introduce a different side of the university. One week I'd feature the Spiritual side of the university with beautiful shots of the Grotto and the Basilica - inside and out - interview a few of the more charismatic priests and talk about the community service that the students participate in. Another week I would showcase some of the other Irish sports programs that don't get as much press such as the elite fencing and lacrosse programs. Yet another week I would focus on the academic side of the university: feature all of the different colleges - Arts and Letters, Mendoza, Kellogg and Kroc, Engineering and Science - and the classroom setting. Notre Dame has a top 20 academic program (and according to independent research by U.S. News and some other scholars would have a Top 8 academic program if they were to give up Division 1 sports) and a segment like that would sure grab the attention of parents and young students all across the country.
Most assume Davonte Neal will see significant playing time as a freshman. Give us your prediction of his stats as freshman, how many touchdowns he’ll score, and how many of those scores will be on special teams.
After watching some of the new new offense and personnel in person a few weeks ago, I no longer believe that Neal will see "significant" playing time as a freshman. Maybe he'll be in on a few "Go" routes ala Golden Tate during his freshman season, but as a whole I don't see him beating out John Goodman, DaVaris Daniels, Robby Toma, TJ Jones or even Theo Riddick to see many snaps at WR. Having said that I do believe that he and GA3 will be the kick returners and has a great chance at being the main punt returner all season.
As for actual stat predictions, I'll go with a little over 200 yards receiving (a few "Go Balls Deep" catches and a couple more late game catches against Purdue, BYU and BC) with 2 TDs as a receiver, 2 TDs as a kick returner and 1 TD as a punt returner. Wait, a punt return for a touchdown? I must be crazy.
Name one player who isn’t a star that will have a breakout season in 2012.
Last I checked, Everett Golson was not a star. (Still not sleeping on him)