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Notre Dame Football: Marcus Freeman updates media ahead of Tennessee State game

Some quick hitters

Notre Dame v Navy - Aer Lingus College Football Classic Photo By Ben McShane/Sportsfile via Getty Images

Notre Dame Fighting Irish head coach Marcus Freeman met with journalists Thursday after starting the season in style with a 42-3 victory over the Navy Midshipmen. The Irish coach gave injury updates and noted the historic significance of Notre Dame’s upcoming matchup against the Tennessee State Tigers.

On Jadarian Price’s recovery and 19-yard touchdown in the Navy game, Freeman said, “For me, I was extremely happy for him, because it’s been a long process from when he tore his Achilles last summer to actually getting back out there on the field. There was such high hopes last year after spring ball for him as we entered last year’s season. I was so excited for him to have that reward. These guys work so hard to be able to play in a game like that, and then, to be able to score a touchdown. I was really happy… I’ve seen the behind-the-scenes work that he’s put into rehab and then once you’re cleared, it’s the confidence of being able to do it at a high level. There’s one thing, doing it in practice, but for him to do it in a game was extremely rewarding for me because I wanted it for him.”

As for the status of Irish tight end Eli Raridon following an ACL tear, Freeman said, “Eli will not go this game. He hasn’t been fully cleared yet. He’s still working his way back… Being cleared to truly play in a game… Hopefully, in the next few weeks, he’ll be at that point.”

The coach went on to note the significance of the team’s first game against an HBCU and said, “It’s great for college football to have an FCS school come to Notre Dame Stadium and play a game and the first HBCU ever to play here... I’m looking forward to being across the field from Eddie George... somebody that I looked up to as a young person from Ohio.”

On Tobias Merriweather’s growth and transition to the new season, Freeman said, “He’s been really good in practice, to me he’s been dying to have more of a role after last season. He’s done a great job in the preparation and I know he didn’t score a touchdown, but he did some really good things in the game and sometimes the stat sheet doesn’t show that but we were pleased with what he did in the game and we really look forward to him having a great opportunity to have a big game this week.”

On the identity of the offense, Freeman said, “I think it’s a process of looking at what gives your team the best opportunity to succeed against your opponent. We thought versus Navy, we were gonna be heavy in twelve, twelve and probably eleven was the next biggest personnel grouping you were gonna see. This week, we’ll present a couple different other things. What, within our team, what gives us the best opportunity to succeed versus Tennessee State? I think you’ll see multiple different personnel groups this week. I don’t know if I want to give away everything we’re gonna do, but you will see some personnels maybe that you haven’t seen in the past that we look to really create some mismatches and try to put ourselves in a matchup where we feel really favorable.”

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