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    Daily Dish - 10.24.11

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    kfriltennis.jpg - SI.com selected a 2011 Midseason All-America team and put Notre Dame's Manti Te'o as a second-team linebacker.

    - Notre Dame's "Dig Pink" match certainly lived up to its name ... the Fighting Irish scooped 62 shots - including a match-high 20 digs by Kristen Dealy - during Sunday's 3-0 (25-23, 25-17, 25-19) BIG EAST Conference volleyball win against USF in front of 1,460 fans at Purcell Pavilion ... Dealy was one of three Irish players with double-digit digs as senior Frenchy Silva (17) and sophomore Andrea McHugh (10) helped anchor a defensive effort that held USF to a .107 hitting clip. Notre Dame partnered with Dig Pink, a national initiative devoted to promoting breast cancer awareness spearheaded by the Side-Out Foundation, to help raise money for the Secret Sisters Society of South Bend.

    - A career-high two-goal effort from Harrison Shipp led the way as the No. 15 Notre Dame men's soccer team defeated Pittsburgh, 3-1, on Saturday evening in BIG EAST Blue Division play at Ambrose Urbanic Field in Pittsburgh ... Notre Dame jumped on top in the 33rd minute on an own goal and Shipp gave the Irish a 2-0 lead in the 44th minute.

    - Women's tennis senior co-captains Kristy Frilling and Shannon Mathews punched their ticket Sunday to the championship of the ITA Midwest Regionals doubles draw, which will take place today at the Ohio State Varsity Tennis Center in Columbus, Ohio ... the Irish duo recorded a pair of victories on the day to put them in the title matchup ... after opening up with a decisive 8-1 opening match against Belinda Niu and Brittany Wowchuk of Northwestern, Frilling and Mathews found themselves in a semifinal matchup against RachelWhite and Melissa Kopinski of Illinois ... the Irish tandem jumped out to a quick 4-1 advantage in their semifinal tilt but saw the Illinois team win the next two games to close the margin to one game ... Frilling and Mathews were undeterred, however, claiming four of the next five games to pull away for an 8-4 victory.

    - Notre Dame four boat, in its first taste of competitive action on the season, earned a fifth-place finish in the championship four race at the Head of the Charles Regatta on the Charles River on Sunday ... the Irish finish also represented the second-best result amongst collegiate boats in the race ... the Head of the Charles is an extremely reputable race worldwide, as it is the second largest two-day regatta in the world, with more than 8,900 athletes rowing in around 1,750 boats in 56 events ... the Irish boat, comprised of coxswain Abby Meyers, along with Molly Bruggeman at stroke, Olivia Kacsits at the third seat, Erin McConnell at the second seat and Courtney Gaberino at bow concluded the race in a time of 18:40.01 to secure the fifth-place result by more than 11 seconds over Yale, who crossed in 18:51.45.

    Student-Athletes Volunteer In Alabama

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    ndmurphbama.jpg AL.com - A group of University of Notre Dame student-athletes and administrators wrapped up a week of volunteering in tornado relief Thursday on a fall break service trip organized by Notre Dame and the University of Alabama.

    The trip, called Fight for Tide, brought 24 students and six administrators to Tuscaloosa to work in collaboration with Project Team Up, an initiative to rebuild communities partnered with Nick Saban's foundation Nick's Kids.

    Students representing the Notre Dame baseball, cross country, cheerleading, fencing, men's golf, women's lacrosse, rowing and track and field teams were selected for the trip based on essays they wrote.

    Sarah Smith, program coordinator for student athlete welfare and development at Notre Dame, said the idea to help Tuscaloosa began with a former Notre Dame employee who currently works in the ticket office at Alabama. He emailed the athletics office at Notre Dame and asked them to collect relief supplies that Alabama would pay to ship.

    Smith, who is originally from a town an hour away from Joplin, Missouri, began to come up with an idea of a service trip when students started talking over the summer about going to down to Tuscaloosa to help.

    "I just kind of ran with the idea and started calling people to see if it would be a possibility, and people started wanting to support it and make it happen," Smith said.

    After arriving Saturday, the group has worked at two sites in Alberta City, clearing storm debris on lots where new houses are planned to be built. They also met with Alabama athletics director Mal Moore and went on the field at Bryant-Denny Stadium, had dinner with Notre Dame's Alabama alumni club at Dreamland, attended Mass with students at the St. Francis of Assisi Parish on the Alabama campus and toured the baseball and softball facilities.

    On Thursday, at a site just off University Boulevard on 21st Avenue East, Alabama softball coach Patrick Murphy and several players joined the group from Notre Dame in clearing debris from destroyed houses and carrying limbs to the street.

    Notre Dame baseball player Tommy Chase said the experience changed his perspective on the important things in life.

    "I look at this as a great opportunity to help where there's a need," Chase said. "We get caught up at school doing a lot things for ourselves, whether it's in sports or in the classroom. Those are all great things, but it's revolved around our own needs and goals. Being able to come down here and help others is really important for my own personal development, but also I want to hopefully inspire this community in some way."

    Notre Dame sophomore cheerleader Erin Garfield took time away from her team to travel to Tuscaloosa because the fall break gave her time to join the service trip. On Saturday night, she'll be cheering on the sidelines as the Irish face USC in South Bend.

    "It's just been a great experience all around, hearing all these stories from people who experienced the tornado and getting to meet all these amazing people, Garfield said.

    Alabama sophomore softball player Ryan Iamurri said she was glad to share the experience of volunteering in Alberta City with the students from Notre Dame.

    "When you live here, you kind of get back in your normal routine, and if you don't cross this bridge (to Alberta), you forget what it's like," Iamurri said."It was so nice of them because we realize there's still so much more to do. To come out here with them is special."

    Tradition at Notre Dame

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    How We Do What We Do

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    typewriter.jpgWhen you consider all the technology available today, it's downright amazing to think how archaic athletic communications were just a few short years ago.

    Need the latest University of Notre Dame football statistics? They'd be calculated and typed by hand on a manual typewriter (eventually the "big innovation" IBM Selectric typewriter came along), reproduced and mailed on Sunday nights and maybe you'd receive them via ordinary mail by Thursday.

    Need them quicker than that? The hit commodity in technology in the 1970s was the Xerox Telecopier (a facsimile machine) that required either four or six minutes (depending on how clear you wanted the type to read) to send a single page of copy to another Telecopier on the other end.

    If a media representative out of town needed your entire news release, depth chart and stats, it might take an hour or more to send it all.

    Breaking news happening on one of the Irish athletic fields? There was no simple way to communicate it. Pick up the telephone and dictate. Call media outlets one at a time to alert them about a hiring or press conference.

    Three technology advances changed everything in the sports information world everywhere - cell phones, the Internet and e-mail.

    For years the joke around the Notre Dame athletic offices was that the Irish quarterback on a given day might break his leg and - given that practices were closed to the media - there was some chance no one would find out until the next day.

    There was no texting, no Facebook - maybe no way for the word to get out other than old-fashioned word of mouth.

    The World Wide Web prompted the offering of athletic sites like und.com that debuted in 1995. In the beginning sites like Notre Dame's offered strictly the basics - mostly what was available via traditional press releases. There was no video in the "early days," and media members weren't yet routinely carrying computers or laptops. So, quite often, the plea to media to utilize school sites for time-sensitive items like statistics went unheeded.

    About that same time, cell phones changed the face of telecommunications. When current athletics staffers consider all the detailed scheduling and adjustments that go into, for example, a weeklong stay for a postseason bowl game, it's hard to imagine how those events ever occurred without cell phones. The Orange Bowl provided some new contraption-style portable phones to Notre Dame reps one year, but they looked more like walkie-talkies than the current variety and they didn't exactly fit in your pocket.

    For Your Viewing Pleasure

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    annual.report.jpg

    Click HERE
    (or on the sweet women's soccer national championship trophy in the photo above)
    to view the 2010-11 Notre Dame Athletics Annual Report

    Daily Dish - 9.26.11

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    5669346.jpeg - No. 20/24 Notre Dame put together a pair of stirring second-half comebacks to force overtime, but No. 14/15 Marquette scored the match-winner 18 seconds into the extra session, defeating the Fighting Irish, 3-2 in BIG EAST Conference cross-divisional women's soccer action on a rainy Sunday afternoon at Valley Fields in Milwaukee.

    - Notre Dame stumbled out of the gate and never fully recovered during Sunday's BIG EAST Conference volleyball match with Villanova ... while hitting .094 with 11service errors, Notre Dame fell to the Wildcats, 3-1 (25-18, 15-25, 25-19, 25-19) during the nationally televised contest on ESPNU with 1,337 fans on hand to watch at Purcell Pavilion.

    - Here are some of Brian Kelly's comments from Sunday's media teleconference:

    "Tommy (Rees) is 6-1 as a starter. He's led two very huge drives for us late in the games against Michigan and Pittsburgh. He's obviously not a finished product yet, nobody is. He'll continue to get better and better and we'll continue to help him in terms of play-calling and getting him in the right kind of situation so he can be successful."

    "We felt our recruiting efforts and everything we have done since we have been here is to put together a championship defense and then we'll catch up on offense. I think you have to start with building your defense first and the line of scrimmage. We are not there yet but we are on the right road."

    - Looking for a key matchup this week in the Notre Dame-Purdue football game? It's Notre Dame's rushing defense (ranked 25th nationally and allowing 93 yards a game) against Purdue's rushing attack that's rated 11th nationally at 258.67 yards per contest.

    - Michael Floyd is now eighth nationally in receptions at 8.75 per game.

    - The Irish football squad has outgained all four opponents in first-period total yardage, amassing a combined 464-156 edge.

    - Notre Dame's defense now has permitted only two opponent rushing scores over its last nine combined games - and both those were one-yard quarterback sneaks.


    Daily Dish - 9.19.11

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    atkinsonmsu.jpeg

    Weekly Sports Schedule - 9.19-9.25

    - Melissa Henderson posted her second hat trick of the season and fifth of her stellar career, leading No. 12/14 Notre Dame to a clinical 4-1 BIG EAST Conference women's soccer win at Cincinnati on Sunday afternoon before a sellout crowd of 1,400 fans at Gettler Stadium ... Henderson netted two goals less than nine minutes apart midway through the first half after the Fighting Irish spotted the Bearcats an early lead ... she then completed her three-goal day with a key insurance score in the 65th minute ... Lauren Bohaboy opened her goal-scoring account with a tally in the final three minutes, while Elizabeth Tucker dished out two assists.

    - A goal from Harrison Shipp in the 54th minute was all the 16th-ranked men's soccer team needed to defeat Michigan State, 1-0, on Sunday afternoon at DeMartin Stadium ... Notre Dame now has a four-game unbeaten streak, which includes three straight victories ... Shipp had a game-high three shots on goal ... Will Walsh made five saves for Notre Dame to earn his second shutout of the season ... Walsh has all seven decisions this season for the Irish.

    - Notre Dame stayed focused in front of a raucous crowd of 3,410 at the Wisconsin Field House to sweep the host Badgers, 3-0 (25-22, 25-22, 25-23), in volleyball action Saturday night ... the win was the first ever for the Irish volleyball program on Wisconsin's home floor and snapped the Badgers' six-game winning streak heading into the contest ... Notre Dame was led by InnTowner Invitational MVP Kristen Dealy, who connected for eight kills and a pair of solo blocks with nine digs in the finale ... Hilary Eppink (nine kills) and Frenchy Silva (14 digs) were named to the all-tournament team.

    - The men's golf team jumped two more spots on the final day of the Olympia Fields Invitational at Olympia Fields Country Club in Chicago, Ill., finishing Sunday in a tie for eighth amongst a deep 15-team field ... the Irish closed with a final day 294 (+14) to conclude the 54-hole tournament at 883 (+43) ... Stanford held on for the tournament title, finishing up the event with a score of 849 (+9) for a full 16-shot victory over both Auburn and Oklahoma State who finished tied for second at 865 (+25) ... in addition, with Notre Dame's tie for eighth, the Irish posted victories over three teams which appeared in last season's NCAA Championship final four: Augusta State, Duke and Ohio State.

    - The men's tennis team managed a pair of singles victories in a rain-shortened final day at the Illini Invitational in Chicago on Sunday ... Casey Watt earned his first victory of the weekend, taking down California's Riki McLachlan in straight sets, 7-5, 6-3 ... Blas Moros closed out the weekend with a 2-2 singles record after dropping Alabama's Stuart Kenyon, 6-3, 6-4.

    - Former Irish assistant football coach Urban Meyer will be one of the color commentators on ABC Sports Saturday for the noon Notre Dame-Pittsburgh telecast ... he'll join Dave Pasch and Chris Spielman.

    - Former Irish baseball player Steve Sollmann is back on campus working as an academic counselor in the Academic Services for Student-Athletes department ... Sollmann played second base and was a 10th-round draft pick of the Milwaukee Brewers in 2004 ... he had a .360 career average at Notre Dame and earned All-America honors in 2003 and was a two-time Academic All-American.

    - Notre Dame fans are lining up to attend winter sports ... led by a near 300 percent increase in hockey sales, all three winter sports season (hockey, men's and women's basketball) ticket sales are on pace to exceed their 2010-11 season-ticket totals.

    - Brian Kelly comments from his Sunday media teleconference included these tidbits:

    "I think right now he (Aaron Lynch) shows himself very well as a guy that can get after the quarterback. He's relentless and he's very, very physical. He doesn't beat you with speed off the edge, he beats you with power."

    "I got a chance to shake hands with every one of the 1966 players (in town for the national championship team's 45th reunion) as they came off the stage for our pep rally on Friday and our team got a chance to interact with them as well. It was a great way to mix our team with Ara Parseghian and his championship team."

    "If we can control the line of scrimmage, take care of the football, play better pass coverage, especially at the end of the game, we're probably sitting here with a different record."

    "They're not going to forget the fact that they've let two games slip away. You want that feeling of: We're not going to let this happen again. Enough is enough. If that's what they do the rest of the year that's a good place to be."

    - Kicker David Ruffer is Notre Dame's 2011 nominee for the National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete program ... offensive lineman Chris Stewart was a winner of that award a year ago ... Ruffer was a first-team Academic All-American in 2010 with his 3.9 GPA.

    - The connection Saturday with NASCAR driver Kurt Busch attending the Notre Dame-Michigan State football game is former Irish football walk-on defensive back Chris Ham, who works with Busch in the marketing area ... a 1995 Notre Dame graduate in business, Ham lives in Winston-Salem, N.C., and is president of his own consulting form as well as director of motorsports for Lennox Motorsports.

    - Army quarterback Trent Steelman, Notre Dame cornerback Robert Blanton, and Notre Dame running back/kick returner George Atkinson III have been named FBS Independent Players of the Week, for games through Sept. 17 ... Blanton was instrumental in Notre Dame's inaugural win of the season, a 31-13 home decision over No. 15 Michigan State ... Blanton thwarted a late Spartan rally when he secured an interception deep in Notre Dame territory and returned it 82 yards, setting up a game-sealing field goal for the Fighting Irish ... Atkinson tallied 142 yards on four kickoff returns, highlighted by an 89-yard scoring scamper, in Notre Dame's win over Michigan State ... Atkinson is the first Fighting Irish freshman to return a kickoff for score since Raghib Ismail in 1988.

    - Quarterback "hurries" are an inexact football statistic since they are not kept routinely in college press boxes and are not considered official by the NCAA ... still, Aaron Lynch's six hurries Saturday against Michigan State are more than any single Irish player had in all of 2010.

    - Notre Dame's fall slate for men's lacrosse includes an Oct. 8 home game against Air Force (10 a.m. at Arlotta Stadium on the morning of the Notre Dame-Air Force football game) and an Oct. 15 road date at Navy (noon at Miller Field in Annapolis, Md.).

    - Michael Floyd's 31 receptions after three games (10.33 per game) rank him fourth nationally (USC's Rob Woods has 33) ... Floyd also is fourth in receiving yards per game at 132.33 each.

    - Notre Dame's football schedule this week ranks 28th by the NCAA in degree of difficulty, with Irish opponents standing 15-9 (.625) ... Irish opponents still unbeaten include South Florida, Michigan, USC and Stanford.

    - Looking way ahead to Notre Dame's next home football game Oct. 8 vs. Air Force - the featured event of the weekend will be dedication of the Dan Devine sculpture.

    - Tickets remain on sale to the public through the Purdue ticket offices for the Oct. 1 Notre Dame-Purdue football game in West Lafayette.

    - The women's tennis team and head coach Jay Louderback have announced their 2011-12 schedule.

    Notre Notes - 8.24.11

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