The Notre Dame Fighting Irish keep rolling along. They overcame an early blocked punt for a touchdown by the N.C. State Wolfpack to win 35-14. It was a very solid performance from every phase of the team. Heck, the defense only let up 7 points themselves and it was on a very impressive catch in the end zone from an NC State receiver. The Irish look got many important contributions. Again, it was hard to choose only 3 to highlight, but it is a good problem to have when you’re winning.
With Alize Mack now sidelined with a concussion, this performance becomes even more important. Durham Smythe had his best game of the season. He finished the game with 3 catches for 52 yards and a touchdown. This group of tight ends is not making explosive plays down the field. They are not taking the top off the defense. But it seems they are Brandon Wimbush’s security blanket. That is still a very important part of the offense. Smythe has reliable hands that Wimbush can look for when he gets in trouble.
Yes I know, a lot of the touchdowns caught on Notre Dame’s defense have happened with Love in coverage. I would argue that it is nice to see a Notre Dame cornerback in the correct position to make a play every single time. All defensive backs will get beat. That is part of the game. Julian Love has quietly had one of the best and most consistent seasons of anyone on this team. He yet again had another game changing pick 6. This time in the 3rd quarter and pushed Notre Dame’s lead to 28-14. Did you know Julian Love has 11 pass breakups? That ranks 4th in the entire country.
I have been leaving Josh Adams off this list almost every week. His incredible performances have become the norm. He ran for a smooth 202 yards and 1 touchdown. Adams has been too good for too long for me not to highlight him. He is the driving force for the offense. He is finally getting some national recognition as well. I am all aboard the Josh Adams for Heisman bandwagon. If Notre Dame runs the table and goes 11-1, there is no doubt in my mind that he will be the most deserving player for college football’s most notable award. Keep on running, Josh.
Notre Dame will welcome Wake Forest to South Bend next Saturday. The Demon Deacons are coming off a big win against Louisville and look to an improved football team. It won’t be Notre Dame’s toughest game left, but they sure have to show up and play a good game to get a win.