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Notre Dame Football: Reasons Why I’m Excited for the 2021 Season

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Outside from the obvious, I have some things to be absolutely psyched out of my mind about for 2021

NCAA Football: Notre Dame Blue-Gold Game Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Just Under 2 Months Away

People...we’re getting close. I, for one, am excited to look forward to the fall. I’m getting sick of the insane heat and humidity - it’s time for some crisp air again. Also, I am so looking forward to another college football season. The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have a full, normal schedule, and they will welcome a full Notre Dame Stadium each home game this coming year. Man that is incredible to type. Besides football being truly back, I have some other points for why I am excited for this season (and you should be, too). So, let’s get into it.

EXCITEMENT

1. Marcus Freeman.

I, along with just about everyone in the fanbase, are JACKED to have Marcus Freeman as the defensive coordinator. He has been balling out since he was hired back in January. Brian Kelly got him from Cincinnati while basically poaching him from LSU, which was incredible. Additionally, he has brought a no-nonsense attitude on the field while keeping a tight community on the team among the players. Also, he has just been absolutely KILLING the recruiting game. The recruits that have committed in 2021 have been high-caliber. I super pumped to see him lead the defense that has some experience, some room to grow, and oh yeah has KYLE HAMILTON.

I am excited for him, but I am cautiously optimistic about his success. I do feel that he will be a rockstar as the DC, but I am not as quick to anoint him just yet. I don’t want us to fall into a situation like I saw with Jim Harbaugh where UofM fans treated him like he was the best thing since Bear Bryant without having coached a game yet. That’s my only hang up here. I want him to be just amazing and a candidate to take over for BK whenever he retires, but I’m just holding myself back a bit so I don’t get burned. He should be just dynamite for the defense and the team, overall.

Syndication: Cincinnati Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC

2. Jack Coan

This might be somewhat of a hot take to be excited instead of a bit apprehensive about the new starting QB (he is going to start on Sept. 5, we might as well just have it be announced), but that is where I stand. I’m glad to have a QB that has done generally well and one that led Wisconsin to a Rose Bowl two seasons ago. I believe that Coan’s experience will be valuable going into this season with an inexperience offensive line and wide receivers that need to develop. He was brought to compete and win, and I think he will look to be successful in his last season of college football before trying for an NFL spot. Of course Coan is no Ian Book, and it is tough to follow the guy that won the most games in program history and was universally loved by his last season with his grit and game managing abilities. But. I’m looking forward to seeing how he comes into the offense.

NCAA Football: Notre Dame Blue-Gold Game Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

3. Independence

We’re back, baby! The Irish are independent again. The fun, national, and generally strong schedules come back with a vengeance. A big thank you to the ACC for letting us go undefeated in our one and only regular season as a member, but it’s time to go back to what got us here. I am so pumped not to be tied to a conference anymore. Back, like we never left.

NCAA Football: Notre Dame Blue-Gold Game
No ACC patches!
Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports