Here's a profile of the quarterback position. And by profile, FIDM means a few clips of quarterbacks warming up coupled with an interview with
head clipboard holder quarterbacks coach Peter Guy Matt Mario Lemeiux LaFleur:
And a quasi-goosebump-inducing 2014 Football pump up video. I wish they would not include "highlights" from losses in highlight videos. How are they ever highlights? Man I am full of criticism today. Disreputable and unaccomplished gentlemen are given to unfair and unjustified criticism motivated by schadenfreude, I suppose. Or so the adage goes. Love ya, Fighting Irish Digital Media:
And finally, a press conference with newly named starter Everett Golson. Most notably, when asked about what he was doing to help get Malik Zaire ready, Golson was indignant: "It's not my job to get him ready to play...It's his job. I'm not obligated one bit to help anyone." No. Not true at all. That was Brett Favre who said that. EG claims--to the shock of Notre Dame fans everywhere--that he is "trying to get better every day." Interesting approach. Hope it pans out.
We covered Coach Kelly's chat with the media yesterday in the comments section, but here are a few eminently extant thoughts:
We'll be seeing both 3- and 4-man fronts on defense. Andrew Trumbetti has passed Romeo Okwara and is the starter at weak side defensive end. Sounds like we'll be looking more at Trumbetti on first and second downs and guys like Jhonny Williams, Anthony Rabasa (yes, Anthony Rabasa), and Kolin Hill on third downs. Ishaq has had a solid camp and will be our strong side end. Jonathan Bonner is in the two deep at defensive tackle (the three-technique, or non-nose guard position). He does not play like a freshman. Isaac Rochell has been "a beast." No word yet on whether Kelly was using the term "beast" to describe Rochell or Rochell's mode, such as it is. If I had my druthers, I would take a "beast" over someone who is simply in "beast mode."
Here's the comment of the day for me:
All of these guys [the defensive line] I'm watching them every day, I'm going against them every day and I'm like, you know, I know when you have holes. I've been around long enough. I know when you look at it and go, oh, that's not very good.
Now they're young. We may cut a gap loose. We may be in the wrong gap, but it's not because we're not rip and roaring up the field. It will be fun, but they'll cause a few moments of Coach VanGorder throwing his hat on the ground, I'm sure of that. But the thing is it's a physical group. It's a physical group.
Kelly also remarked that freshmen nose guard Daniel Cage is "a load." Kelly is pretty zen about the D-line situation. They will make mistakes, but even with freshmen providing depth, we have the raw meat to make the steak sizzle. He seems okay with interior D-line depth so I will stop lying awake at night pondering our defensive line's implosion at the hands of the smaht kids of Stanford.
And the D-line sounds like it's coming together nicely even without a bona fide speed rushman, to use the parlance of our more old school readers. We have "big speed" and "power rushers." I'm okay with this. Beat 'em up with the power rush, then, once their just bracing to get knocked in the head on every play--then we twist and blow right by 'em. Seems like I've heard of this before.
James Onwualu will not be asked to two-gap Andrus Peat against Stanford. Councell will play more against power teams. I think that this is just good common sense, true, but it also underscores BVG's recognition of the need for versatility, adaptation, substitution, hybrid defenders. ND plays a national schedule against old school power teams, various iterations of the spread, and option offenses. Of course we can't get caught in bad personnel groupings against up tempo teams, but I think BVG realizes that a one-size-fits-all approach is just not going to cut it.
BVG is also getting the young talent involved at linebacker. In the mix at Sam are Onwualu, Councell, and John Turner. Nyles Morgan and Joe Schmidt are it at Mike, though it sounds like Jaylon Smith has purchased and will own a pretty nice chunk of real estate between the tackles. This news comes in the wake of ND's decision to abandon the 10-1 defense because of its potential metaphysical and space-time-continuum implications.
Nyles Morgan reportedly has no idea what he's doing, but he runs around like a crazy person so he'll play. He's also reported to be quite chippy. When was the last time we had a middle linebacker who was just mean? Also, the uber non-ELITE recruit, Greer Martini, has forced his way into the two deep behind Jaylon.
Kelly says that VanGorder gives the young guys simple responsibilities and just lets them get after it. This will come as a relief for everyone who was frustrated that Bob Diaco didn't get young talent involved on defense. The relief will subside when a freshmen defender gives up a touchdown. In its place will burn rage as intense as the fire of a thousand suns.
Kelly didn't mention Grace when discussing the two-deep at linebacker, which makes me wonder how close he really is to seeing action. I'm kind of wondering if Grace will be "a couple weeks away" all season.
Starting secondary will be Russell and Riggs (corners) and Collinsworth and Redfield (safeties). Elijah Shumate is alive, and will be an in-the-box player. The rumors of his demise have been greatly exaggerated. I think he'll be a small, fast, hybrid-type defender who punches above his weight, like Jamoris Slaughter.
Golson is our starter. Dings and dents have kept the offensive line in a state of flux, with putative starters sitting out the odd day here and there. Yawn. They'll still be pretty good. So will the skill position players. Really not that much news about offense. I think it's because of the whole "shiny new thing" fascination with all the freshmen that will be playing defense. It just doesn't seem like there will be many offensive reps for freshmen.