NBC national telecast with Tom Hammond (play-by-play), Mike Mayock (analysis), Alex Flanagan (sideline), Rob Hyland (producer) and David Michaels (director).
ISP Sports is the exclusive national rights-holder for Irish football radio broadcasts. ISP manages, produces and syndicates the Irish national football radio network. Notre Dame games will be broadcast by Don Criqui (play-by-play), former Irish great Allen Pinkett (analysis) and Darin Pritchett providing pre-game, sideline and post-game reports. This broadcast can be heard live on SIRIUS Satellite Radio (channel 159) and XM Satellite Radio (channel 117).
All Notre Dame home games may be heard in South Bend on Sunny 101.5 FM and NewsTalk 960 WSBT-AM.
Saturday is the 215th consecutive sellout at Notre Dame Stadium. Since 1966, every home football game for the Irish has been a sellout except one - a 1973 Thanksgiving Day game vs. Air Force. Notre Dame has now played in front of sellouts in 263 of its last 264 home games.
Notre Dame (UND.com), Stanford (GoStanford.com)
Live in-game statistics will be provided through CBS College Sports Gametracker via each school's respective official athletic website.
Notre Dame enters the matchup with Stanford unranked, but is receiving a vote in the Associated Press poll. The Cardinal are ranked No. 16 in the AP poll and No. 17 in the coaches poll.
Notre Dame leads the all-time series versus Stanford (17-7), including a 10-2 edge when the scene shifts to Notre Dame Stadium. The Irish have won 11 of the last 15 games in the series by an average margin of 11.2 points per game. Notre Dame is averaging 31.6 points per game in those meetings, while surrendering 20.4 (more on the series history on pages 26-31).
WHAT TO WATCH FOR SATURDAY
Notre Dame looks to snap its 10-game overall losing streak to ranked opponents and four-game slide against ranked foes in Notre Dame Stadium.
Stanford enters this weekend's contest ranked No. 16 in the AP, which is the highest ranking ever by the Cardinal in the series history with Notre Dame in Notre Dame Stadium.
ON THIS DATE
Notre Dame has played nine previous games in its history on Sept. 25. The Irish are 8-1 all-time on this date. The Irish were ranked in the top 25 on five of the occasions and played a top 25 opponent twice.
Sept. 25, 1965: In a seesaw battle, Purdue scored the winning touchdown late in the game, snapping a 12-game unbeaten streak by Notre Dame. Bob Griese set a Notre Dame opponent record by completing 19 of 22 passes, a record that stood until 1991, when Michigan's Elvis Grbac topped it.
Sept. 25, 1954: Notre Dame senior quarterback Ralph Guglielmi had maybe the greatest opener by an Irish player when No. 2 Notre Dame blanked No. 4 Texas, 21-0. Guglielmi intercepted a school record three passes, completed 6 of his 10 passes for 125 yards and a touchdown (to Dan Shannon) and also scored the other two TDs on three-yard runs. Texas committed seven turnovers while the Irish had only two. The victory elevated Notre Dame to No. 1 after just one game into the Terry Brennan era.
Sept. 25, 1943:Frank Leahy wins the season opener with a 41-0 pasting of Pittsburgh. The Notre Dame quarterback was Angelo Bertelli, who won the Heisman Trophy that year after playing in only six games. He was drafted and ordered to report to active duty. This was after he beat Navy, but conveniently for the Cadets, he was ordered to report for duty just before the Army game.
HISTORIC NOTRE DAME STADIUM
The 2010 football season marks the 80th year of Irish football in fabled Notre Dame Stadium. The Irish have played 414 games in the facility to date and own a 307-102-5 (.748) record in the "House that Rockne Built." The most wins in a season by the Irish at home is seven by the 1988 national championship team and the longest home winning streak in Notre Dame football history is 28 games (from 11/21/42 through 9/30/50).
HOW DO THEY STACK UP?
Average weight of the offensive and defensive lines:
Notre Dame OL 306.8 lbs. vs. Stanford DL 287.0 lbs.
Notre Dame DL 291.0 lbs. vs. Stanford OL 300.8 lbs.
Average height of the receivers and the secondaries:
Notre Dame WR/TE 6' 1 3/4" vs. Stanford DB 6' 1"
Notre Dame DB 6' 0 1/4" vs. Stanford WR/TE 6' 2 1/3"
A WIN THIS WEEK WOULD...
Even the Irish record at 2-2 for the first time since 2000.
Snap Notre Dame's 10-game losing streak against top 20 foes.
Give the Irish a victory against their highest ranked opponent since Sept. 10, 2005 when Notre Dame knocked off No. 3 Michigan, 17-10.
Give Notre Dame a victory against its highest ranked opponent in Notre Dame Stadium since Sept. 11, 2004 when the Irish defeated the No. 8 Wolverines, 28-20.
Be the first victory for Notre Dame over a top 20 opponent since No. 19 Penn State (41-17) on Sept. 9, 2006.
Be the first victory for Notre Dame over a top 20 opponent at Notre Dame Stadium since No. 19 Penn State (41-17) on Sept. 9, 2006.
Extend Notre Dame's winning streak over Stanford at Notre Dame to eight games dating back to 1992.
Give the Irish victories in eight of their last nine meetings with the Cardinal since 2002.
Improve Notre Dame to 18-7 (.720) in the all-time series with Stanford.
Improve the Irish to 11-2 (.846) in the all-time series with the Cardinal in Notre Dame Stadium.
Improve Notre Dame to 83-44-6 (.647) all-time against the Pac-10 Conference.
Improve the Irish to 47-16-1 (.742) all-time against the Pac-10 Conference at home.
Improve an unranked Notre Dame squad (post 1932) to 6-5 (.545) all-time against Stanford.
Improve an unranked Irish squad (post 1932) to 4-0 (1.000) all-time against the Cardinal in Notre Dame Stadium.
Improve an unranked Notre Dame squad (post 1932) to 1-2 (.333) all-time against a ranked Stanford squad.
Improve an unranked Irish squad (post 1932) to 1-0 (1.000) all-time against a ranked Cardinal squad in Notre Dame Stadium.
Improve Kelly's record to 173-59-2 (.742) overall, 55-24 (.692) at the FBS level and 35-8 (.814) over the last four seasons.
Improve Notre Dame's all-time record to 839-292-42 (.733).
Improve Notre Dame's all-time record at Notre Dame Stadium to 308-102-5 (.748).
Improve Notre Dame to 70-41-5 (.625) all-time against schools from the state of California.
Improve Notre Dame's all-time record against opponents ranked by the AP to 143-128-10 (.527).
A LOSS THIS WEEK WOULD...
Drop the Irish record to 1-3 for the first time since 2007.
Extend Notre Dame's losing streak against top 20 foes to 11 games.
Snap Notre Dame's seven-game winning streak over Stanford at Notre Dame Stadium.
Drop Notre Dame to 17-8 (.680) in the all-time series with Stanford.
Drop the Irish to 10-3 (.769) in the all-time series with the Cardinal in Notre Dame Stadium.
Drop Notre Dame to 82-45-6 (.639) all-time against the Pac-10 Conference.
Drop the Irish to 46-17-1 (.727) all-time against the Pac-10 Conference at home.
Drop an unranked Notre Dame squad (post 1932) to 5-6 (.455) all-time against Stanford.
Drop an unranked Irish squad (post 1932) to 3-1 (.750) all-time against the Cardinal in Notre Dame Stadium.
Drop an unranked Notre Dame squad (post 1932) to 0-3 (.000) all-time against a ranked Stanford squad.
Drop an unranked Irish squad (post 1932) to 0-1 (.000) all-time against a ranked Cardinal squad in Notre Dame Stadium.
Drop Kelly's record to 172-60-2 (.739) overall, 54-25 (.684) at the FBS level and 34-9 (.791) over the last four seasons.
Drop Notre Dame's all-time record to 838-293-42 (.732).
Drop Notre Dame's all-time record at Notre Dame Stadium to 307-103-5 (.746).
Drop Notre Dame to 69-42-5 (.616) all-time against schools from the state of California.
Drop Notre Dame's all-time record against opponents ranked by the AP to 142-129-10 (.523).
Notre Dame played before a sellout for the 74th time in its last 85 games road games. In fact, the Irish have played in front of sellout crowds in 220 of their previous 254 games, including 95 of their last 106 dating back to the 2001 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl (the '01, '03, '05 and '07 games at Stanford, the '04 game vs. Navy at the Meadowlands, the '05 and '08 games at Washington, the '07 game at UCLA, the '08 Hawai'i Bowl and the '09 games at Purdue and in San Antonio against Washington State were not sellouts).
Notre Dame's defense was whistled for its first penalty of the season midway through the second quarter when sophomore S Zeke Motta was flagged for a horse collar tackle.
Junior WR Michael Floyd has caught a TD pass in each of his three career games against Michigan State.
Notre Dame limited the Spartans to seven points in the first half. The Irish had not held Michigan State to fewer points in an opening half since Sept. 20, 2003 (the Spartans totaled six points in the first half).
Notre Dame played in its first overtime contest of 2010 last Saturday night and fourth over the last three years.
The Irish and Spartans have played in two overtime contests in series history.
Notre Dame drops to 3-8 all-time in overtime games and 0-2 against the Spartans.
The Irish extended their streak of consecutive games with at least 20 or more first downs to 16 (dates back to the Hawai'i Bowl victory over Hawai'i in 2008). Notre Dame finished the game with 28 first downs -- the most ever against the Spartans.
Notre Dame recorded a pair of turnovers (a Michael Floyd fumble and Dayne Crist interception) in the first half inside the Michigan State 20-yard line. The Irish have three such turnovers over their first three games.
Notre Dame did, though, force a Spartan turnover inside the Irish 20-yard line. Motta collected his first career interception in the end zone.
Notre Dame committed three turnovers for the second straight week.
Last Saturday night marked the sixth time in the last seven meetings that the winning team in the Michigan State-Notre Dame series scored 30 or more points.
Over the last 11 meetings (dating back to 2000), the Notre Dame-Michigan State game has been decided by a touchdown or less on nine different occasions, with the game-winning score coming late in the fourth quarter or overtime in eight of the 11 meetings. Here's a breakdown of the nail-biting heroics:
2000: Herb Haygood 68-yard TD pass from Jeff Smoker with 1:48 left in the 4th quarter (MSU 27-21). 2001: Charles Rogers 47-yard TD pass from Ryan Van Dyke with 7:51 left in the 4th quarter (MSU 17-10). 2002:Arnaz Battle 60-yard TD pass from Pat Dillingham with 1:15 left in the 4th quarter (ND 21-17). 2003: Greg Taplin 40-yard INT return with 6:55 left in the 4th quarter (MSU 22-16). 2004: Notre Dame builds a 28-7 third quarter lead before MSU rallies with 17 points in 31-24 ND win. 2005: Jason Teague's 19-yd TD run in the first overtime gave the Spartans a 44-41 victory in Notre Dame Stadium. The Irish had rallied from a 21-point deficit to force overtime. 2006: Notre Dame CB Terrail Lambert intercepts Michigan State quarterback Drew Stanton and returns it 27 yards for the go-ahead touchdown with 2:53 remaining as the Irish rallied from a 16-point fourth quarter deficit for a 40-37 victory. Lambert added another interception on the Spartans final drive to ultimately secure the triumph. 2009: Notre Dame SS Kyle McCarthy's interception at the 4-yard line with 57 seconds sealed Notre Dame's 33-30 win after Jimmy Clausen threw for 300 yards, including the game-winning score on a 33-yard touchdown to Golden Tate with 5:18 left.
2010: Michigan State punter and holder Aaron Bates found tight end Charlie Gantt for a 29-yard TD pass on a fake field goal in overtime to give Michigan State a 34-31 victory.
With his sixth reception against Michigan State, senior RB Armando Allen, Jr. moved into first place all-time on the Irish receptions record for running backs with 110 career catches. He bested the previous school record of 109 held by Darius Walker (2004-06). Allen's 18-yard reception in the first quarter was his longest of the season.
Junior QB Dayne Crist set career-highs in completions (32), attempts (55), passing yards (369) and touchdown passes (four) against the Spartans. No Notre Dame quarterback has ever thrown for more touchdown passes in his first career start on the road. Crist's 32 completions, 55 attempts and four touchdown passes rank tied for fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively, in Notre Dame single-game history.
Crist registered a 24-yard touchdown pass to Floyd with 13:20 to go in the fourth quarter to give the Irish a 28-21 lead. The TD pass was Crist's fourth of the game, seventh of the season and eighth of his career.
Crist eclipsed 300 yards passing for the first time in his career. He went 12 for 14 for 149 yards and two touchdowns in the third quarter alone. Crist registered a 15-yard touchdown pass to Riddick with 1:29 to go in the third quarter to tie the score, 21-21. He was 7 of 8 for 75 yards on the scoring drive.
Crist connected on a 10-yard TD pass to Rudolph with 12:25 to go in the third quarter to tie the score, 14-14. He was 5 for 6 for 74 yards and a touchdown on the opening scoring drive of the fist half. Crist connected on a seven-yard TD pass to Floyd with 5:28 left in the first quarter to give Notre Dame a 7-0 lead. He completed 11 of 18 passes for 116 yards and one touchdown in the opening 15 minutes.
Junior WR Michael Floyd has registered a touchdown pass against Michigan State in each of the last three years. He has also now recorded four career multi-TD catch games. Floyd registered a 24-yard TD reception with 13:20 to go in the fourth quarter to give the Irish a 28-21 lead. The TD catch was his second of the game, second of the season and 18th of his career. With 18 career touchdown catches, he is now tied with Maurice Stovall (2002-05) for sixth on the Irish all-time touchdown receptions list. Floyd hauled in a seven-yard touchdown reception from Crist with 5:28 left in first quarter to give Irish a 7-0 lead.
Sophomore S Zeke Motta registered his first career interception in the Irish end zone with 12:10 to go before halftime to stop a Michigan State drive. He also established a new career-high in tackles with a team-best 11.
Sophomore WR Theo Riddick entered the Michigan State game with four receptions for 52 yards, but finished the contest with a career-high 10 catches for 128 yards and one touchdown. He registered his first career 100-yard receiving game. Riddick posted two grabs for 42 yards on Notre Dame's opening scoring drive of the second half (an 18- and 24-yard grab). He hauled in a 15-yard touchdown pass from Crist with 1:29 to go in the third quarter to tie the score, 21-21. The TD reception was Riddick's first career TD reception.
Junior TE Kyle Rudolph hooked up with Crist for a 17-yard reception in the first quarter. He moved past Dean Masztak (1978-81) into fourth place on the all-time receiving list for Irish tight ends on the grab. Rudolph hauled in a 10-yard touchdown pass from Crist with 12:25 to go in the third quarter to tie the game, 14-14. It was Rudolph's second touchdown catch of the season and seventh of his career.
Sophomore LB Manti Te'o eclipsed the 10 tackle mark for the second consecutive week and fourth time in his career.
Senior walk-on K David Ruffer connected on a 33-yard field goal in overtime to give the Irish a 31-28 lead. The successful attempt was his 10th consecutive field goal. Ruffer is a perfect 10 of 10 on field goals. The 10 straight field goals ranks as the second-longest streak to open a career and tied for the third-longest such streak overall.
CRIST QUICKLY MAKING A NAME FOR HIMSELF
Junior QB Dayne Crist has made only three career starts and entered this season following reconstructive knee surgery. The signal caller has completed 60.4% of his passes (64 of 106) for 851 yards and seven touchdowns. Crist has registered a passing efficiency of 145.83. He is ranked among the top 20 FBS quarterbacks in total passing yards (t-13th, 851), passing yards per game (t-15th, 283.67/game) and total offense yards per game (14th, 294.67/game).
There is not a quarterback in the FBS ranked ahead of Crist in any of the NCAA recognized passing categories that has started fewer games than the Notre Dame junior.
Here is a comparison between Crist and the more notable quarterbacks in Notre Dame history over their first three career starts.
Crist hooked with freshman TJ Jones for 53 yards with 12:42 to go in the third quarter against Michigan to bring the Irish with seven points, 21-14.
The 53-yard completion was the longest of the season for Notre Dame until Rudolph's 95-yard grab late in the fourth quarter.
Crist served as the quarterback for nine of Notre Dame's 17 possessions in the game against Michigan. The Irish offense totaled 363 of their 535 yards in those series. Notre Dame also scored all 24 points of the contest in those series and averaged 8.9 yards per play compared to zero points and 4.8 yards per play in other eight series without Crist.
Crist passed for 277 yards with two touchdowns and one interception in slightly more than one half of football against the Wolverines.
CRIST'S REKINDLES QUARTERBACK FIRST-START MAGIC AGAINST PURDUE
Junior signal caller Dayne Crist snapped Notre Dame's four-game losing streak with a first-time starting quarterback under center.
Since 1975, the Irish are now 18-10 under a first-time starting quarterback. Interestingly enough, Notre Dame is 12-4 under a first-time starting quarterback when playing in Notre Dame Stadium (also since 1975).
Crist's completion percentage of 73.1% was the highest of any first-time starting quarterback with more than eight pass attempts since 1975.
Crist's 19 completions are the second-most by a first-time starting Irish quarterback since 1975. Brady Quinn completed 29 passes against Purdue on Sept. 23, 2003. His 205 yards passing are the third-most by a first-time starting signal caller since 1985. Quinn threw for 297 yards against Purdue on Sept. 27, 2003 and Ron Powlus had 291 yards against Northwestern on Sept. 3, 1994.
Crist was the first junior quarterback to make his starting debut since Arnaz Battle in 2000.
From 1985-98, Notre Dame was victorious in nine straight games in which an Irish quarterback was making his first career start, including four coming in a season opener. Those openers were won by Rick Mirer (No. 1 Notre Dame def. No. 4 Michigan 28-24 in '90), Kevin McDougal (No. 7 Notre Dame def. Northwestern 27-12 in '93), Ron Powlus (No. 3 Notre Dame def. Northwestern 42-12 in '95) and Jarious Jackson (No. 22 Notre Dame def. No. 5 Michigan 36-20 in '98).
Notre Dame's nine-game, first-start winning streak ended in the 10-0 loss at USC on Nov. 28, 1998, when Eric Chappell started in place of the injured starter Jackson (then-freshman Arnaz Battle also played a large chunk of that game).
Following the snap of the nine-game winning streak under first-time starters, the Irish won three consecutive games under first-time signal callers. In fact, all three came during the same season, 2000, and occurred over the year's first five contests. Arnaz Battle (Notre Dame def. No. 24 Texas A&M, 24-10), Gary Godsey (Notre Dame def. Purdue, 23-21) and Matt LoVecchio (No. 25 Notre Dame def. Stanford, 20-14).
Carlyle Holiday dropped his first career start on Sept. 29, 2001 against Texas A&M, but senior walk-on Pat Dillingham was victorious against Stanford on Oct. 5, 2002.
Notre Dame used a trio of first-time signal callers in 2007, including one in each of the first two games of the season. Demetrius Jones (Georgia Tech def. Notre Dame, 33-3), Jimmy Clausen (No. 14 Penn State def. Notre Dame, 31-10) and Evan Sharpley (No. 13 USC def. Notre Dame, 38-0) all failed to walk away with a victory.
Last 28 starting debut games by Irish quarterbacks (Notre Dame is 18-10 in those contests).
Dayne Crist, junior (Notre Dame vs. Purdue, Sept. 4, 2010, first game of season) ... win, 23-12 ... 19 of 26 passing, 205 yards, 1 TD.
Evan Sharpley, sophomore (Notre Dame vs. No. 13 USC, Oct. 20, 2007, eighth game of season) ... loss, 38-0 ... 17 of 33 passing, 117 yards, 1 INT.
Jimmy Clausen, freshman (Notre Dame at No. 14 Penn State, Sept. 8, 2007, second game of season) ... loss, 31-10 ... 17 of 32 passing, 144 yards, 1 INT.
Demetrius Jones, sophomore (Notre Dame vs. Georgia Tech, Sept. 1, 2007, first game of season) ... loss, 33-3 ... 1 of 3 passing, 4 yards, 2 fumbles ... 12 rushes for 28 yards.
Brady Quinn, freshman (Notre Dame at No. 22 Purdue, Sept. 27, 2003, fourth game of season) ... loss, 23-10 ... 29 of 59 passing, 297 yards, 4 INT, TD ... 8 rushes for 25 yards.
Pat Dillingham, sophomore (Notre Dame vs. Stanford, Oct. 5, 2002, fifth game of season) ... win, 31-7 ... 14 of 27 passing, 129 yards, 2 TDs.
Carlyle Holiday, sophomore (Notre Dame at Texas A&M, Sept. 29, 2001, third game of season) ... loss, 24-3 ... 6 of 13 passing, 73 yards, 2 INT ... 12 rushes for 23 yards.
Matt LoVecchio, freshman (No. 25 Notre Dame vs. Stanford, Oct. 7, 2000, fifth game of season) ... win, 20-14 ... 10 of 18 passing, 100 yards, 2 TDs ... 13 rushes for 36 yards, TD.
Gary Godsey, sophomore (Notre Dame vs. Purdue, Sept. 16, 2000, 3rd game of season) ... win, 23-21 ... 14 of 25 passing, 158 yards, INT ... 7 rushes for 3 yards, TD.
Arnaz Battle, junior (Notre Dame vs. No. 24 Texas A&M, Sept. 2, 2000, 1st game of season) ... win, 24-10 ... 10 of 16 passing, 133 yards ... 12 rushes for 50 yards.
Eric Chappell, junior (No. 9 Notre Dame at USC, Nov. 28, 1998, 11th game of season) ... loss, 10-0 ... 0 of 3 passing, 2 INT ... 7 rushes for 33 yards.
Jarious Jackson, senior (Notre Dame vs. No. 5 Michigan, Sept. 5, 1998, 1st game of season) ... win, 36-20 ... 4 of 10 passing, 96 yards, 2 TDs, INT ... 16 rushes for 62 yards.
Tom Krug, junior (No. 8 Notre Dame at Air Force, Nov. 18, 1995, 11th game of season) ... win, 44-14 ... 8 of 13 passing, INT ... 3 rushes for 13 yards ... started due to Powlus' collarbone injury, in previous week versus Navy.
Ron Powlus, sophomore (No. 3 Notre Dame at Northwestern, Sept. 3, 1994, 1st game of season) ... win, 42-15 ... 18 of 24 passing, 291 yards, 4 TD ... 2 rushes for 6 yards.
Kevin McDougal, senior (No. 7 Notre Dame vs. Northwestern, Sept. 4, 1993, 1st game of season) ... win, 27-12 ... 6 of 8 passing, 135 yards ... 5 rushes for -16 yards.
Paul Failla, freshman (No. 8 Notre Dame at Purdue, Sept. 28, 1991, 4th game of season) ... win, 45-20 ... 1 of 1 passing, 10 yards ... 2 rushes for 11 yards ... started in place of Mirer due to team policy of "no practice, no start" (Mirer had pulled rib cartilage during the week) ... Mirer replaced Failla beginning with the second series.
Rick Mirer, sophomore (No. 1 Notre Dame vs. No. 4 Michigan, Sept. 15, 1990, 1st game of season) ... win, 28-24 ... 14 of 23 passing, 165 yards, TD, INT ... 10 rushes for 12 yards, TD.
Kent Graham, freshman (No. 9 Notre Dame vs. Boston College, Nov. 7, 1987, 8th game of season) ... win, 32-25 ... 6 of 8 passing, 11 yards, INT ... 3 rushes for 7 yards.
Tony Rice, sophomore (No. 11 Notre Dame at Air Force, Oct. 17, 1987, 5th game of season) ... win, 35-14 ... 1 of 5 passing, 10 yards, INT ... 9 rushes for 70 yards, 2 TD ... played due to Andrysiak's broken collarbone injury, in previous game at Pittsburgh.
Terry Andrysiak, sophomore (Notre Dame vs. Mississippi, Nov. 9, 1985, 8th game of season) ... win, 37-14 ... 4 of 8 passing, 60 yards, TD ... 2 rushes for -7 yards.
Rick Slager, senior (#9 Notre Dame vs. Boston College, @Foxboro, Sept. 15, 1975, 1st game of season) ... win, 17-3 ... 7 of 12 passing, 72 yards.
Joe Montana, sophomore (#8 Notre Dame vs. Michigan State, Oct. 4, 1975, 4th game of season) ... loss, 10-3 ... 2 of 5 passing, 19 yards, 1 INT.
Rusty Lisch, sophomore (#3 Notre Dame vs. Miami, Nov. 20, 1976, 10th game of season) ... win, 40-27 ... 5 of 11 passing, 102 yards, 1 TD ... 15 rushes for 9 yards, 3 TD.
Tim Koegel, sophomore (#5 Notre Dame at #17 Purdue, Sept. 22, 1979, 2nd game of season) ... loss, 28-22 ... 6 of 18 passing, 81 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT ... four rushes for 0 yards.
Blair Kiel, freshman (#7 Notre Dame vs. #13 Miami, Oct. 11, 1980, 4th game of season) ... win, 32-14 ... 4 of 17 passing, 35 yards ... 11 rushes for 28 yards, 1 TD.
Ken Karcher, sophomore ... (Notre Dame at #1 Pittsburgh, Nov. 6, 1982, 8th game of season) ... loss, 31-16 ... 2 of 4 passing, 21 yards, 1 INT ... 1 rush for -10 yards ... replaced by senior Jim O'Hara in second quarter.
Steve Beurelein, freshman (Notre Dame vs. Colorado, Oct. 1, 1983, 4th game of season) ... win, 27-3 ... 8 of 12 passing, 133 yards.
Scott Grooms, senior (Notre Dame vs. Air Force, Oct. 13, 1984, 6th game of season) ... loss, 21-7 ... 12 of 35 passing, 117 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT ... 12 rushes for -9 yards.
RETURN OF THE MACK (EY) AWARD SEMIFINALIST
Junior TE Kyle Rudolph's return for the 2010 season makes him the only member of the eight announced semifinalist's for the 2009 Mackey Award to come back for another year. Rudolph was named John Mackey Tight End of the Week on Sept. 15 following his record-setting performance against Michigan.
Rudolph, who is just nine receiving yards shy of becoming the fourth Irish tight end in school history to eclipse 1,000 career receiving yards, backed up his record setting day against Michigan with another top-notch effort at Michigan State. He matched his career-high of eight catches (established one week earlier) for 80 yards and one touchdown.
Rudolph hooked up with Crist for a 17-yard reception in the first quarter. He moved past Dean Masztak (1978-81) into fourth place on the all-time receiving list for Irish tight ends on the grab. Rudolph hauled in a 10-yard touchdown pass from Crist with 12:25 to go in the third quarter to tie the game, 14-14. It was Rudolph's second touchdown catch of the season and seventh of his career.
Rudolph's 95-yard touchdown catch in the fourth quarter against Michigan was the second-longest reception in Notre Dame history. The school record pass play was a Blair Kiel to Joe Howard connection against Georgia Tech in 1981. It also was the longest by a Notre Dame tight end, breaking the previous mark of 78 by Mike Creaney versus Pitt in 1970.
Rudolph equalled his career single-game high in receptions with eight and receiving yards with 164 against the Wolverines. He set a single-game school record for receiving yards by a tight end and fell one catch shy of the tight end record for catches in a game. Rudolph's total surpassed Anthony Fasano's previous mark of 155 yards in a 41-16 loss to Purdue in 2004. Ken MacAfee's nine catches (154 yards) in a 1977 victory at Purdue is still the Irish single-game record among tight ends.
Rudolph recorded three receptions on Notre Dame's opening scoring against Michigan drive alone and two resulted in first downs. In fact, both first down grabs came on critical third down conversions.
Rudolph hauled in five catches for 43 yards in the victory over Purdue. Three of his receptions gave Notre Dame a first down.
Last season, Rudolph had racked up 364 yards and three touchdowns on 33 receptions before suffering a shoulder injury against Navy and not recording a catch in the team's final three games (only one of which he suited up for).
While junior WR Michael Floyd did not play in enough games in 2009 to be eligible for the NCAA season rankings, he is listed on the NCAA FBS active career charts in receiving yards per game, receiving yards per catch, receptions per game and receiving touchdowns. Floyd's 83.0 yards receiving per game ranks third in the nation among active players, while his 5.1 catches per game ranks seventh. He also ranks seventh in career receiving yards per catch among active players at 16.3 yards per grab and 10th on the active career chart for receiving touchdowns with 18.
Floyd has registered a touchdown pass against Michigan State in each of the last three years. He has also now recorded four career multi-TD catch games. Floyd registered a 24-yard TD reception with 13:20 to go in the fourth quarter to give the Irish a 28-21 lead. The TD catch was his second of the game, second of the season and 18th of his career. With 18 career touchdown catches, he is now tied with Maurice Stovall (2002-05) for sixth on the Irish all-time touchdown receptions list. Floyd hauled in a seven-yard touchdown reception from Crist with 5:28 left in first quarter to give Irish a 7-0 lead.
Floyd has now recorded a reception in 11 straight games (excluding games he missed due to injury). Floyd has a reception in 20 of the 21 games he has suited up for the Irish. The only game he failed to make a reception came against Navy in 2008 when he was injured early in the first quarter blocking down field.
Floyd had five catches for 66 yards in the loss to Michigan.
Floyd had five receptions for 82 yards in the victory over Purdue.
Floyd has played in 21 career games, and in two of them (at Navy in 2008 and vs. Michigan State in 2009), he missed most of the action following an injury. Yet, Floyd has nine career 100-yard receiving games over the other 19 games played.
Floyd has 18 career receiving touchdowns in just 21 games for Notre Dame. He is tied with Maurice Stovall (2002-05) for sixth on the all-time Notre Dame receiving touchdowns list. His nine receiving touchdowns in 2009 rank tied for eighth-best in single-season Irish history.
Had Floyd met the NCAA requirement of playing in 75 percent of the team's games in 2009 his 113.6 yards per game would have ranked sixth nationally. Floyd and Golden Tate would have been the only receiving tandem to rank top 10 nationally in that statistic. His 18.1 yards per catch would have also earned him 12th place on the NCAA season leader list as well.
Floyd led all FBS wideouts in the nation with a 29.09 yards per catch average and was tied for the nation's lead in receiving touchdowns with four (among NCAA qualifying receivers) before suffering a broken collarbone in the second quarter of Notre Dame's 33-30 victory over Michigan State in 2009.
Floyd recorded four catches for 189 yards and three touchdowns in the 35-0 rout of Nevada in last season's opener. He averaged 47.3 yards per reception, which broke the previous school record of 41.6 yards per catch by Jim Morse against USC on Nov. 26, 1955.
Floyd became the fourth Irish wideout to ever post two career receptions of over 70 yards and the first to ever accomplish the feat in the same game. Nick Eddy had 74 and 91 yard catches during the 1964 season, Tim Brown had 84 and 77 yard receptions in 1986 and Jeff Samardzija had 73 and 80 yard grabs during 2005.
Floyd set a career-high for longest reception when he raced 88 yards for a touchdown with 10:12 left in the third quarter against Nevada in 2009. The 88-yard reception is the fourth-longest in Notre Dame football history and was the longest since Nov. 7, 1981 when Blair Kiel found Joe Howard for a school record 96 yards.
Floyd not only became the first Irish freshman to register a touchdown catch in a season opener (2008), but also became the first freshman to register Notre Dame's first points of a season by TD. Floyd had 48 receptions for 719 yards last year. He established new school records for receptions (48), receiving yards (719) and receiving touchdowns (7) by an Irish freshman. He also set a freshman record with 10 receptions against Pittsburgh on Nov. 1, 2008.
Floyd was the fourth different rookie in the last 20 years whose first career catch was a TD. The others were Raghib "Rocket" Ismail and Derek Brown in 1988 and Derrick Mayes in 1992 - mighty impressive company for Floyd to join.
Notre Dame senior RB Armando Allen Jr. has been one of the most versatile running backs in Irish history. Allen Jr. has not only rushed for 1,883 yards in his career, but hauled in 110 receptions for 774 yards, added 1,247 yards on kickoff returns and another 113 yards on punt returns. In all, Allen Jr. has totaled 4.017 all-purpose yards in his career, which ranks eighth-best in school history.
Allen Jr. has led the Irish in rushing in each of their first three games.
Allen totaled 141 all-purpose yards against Michigan State. He rushed 13 times for 71 yards (5.5/carry) and collected six catches for 70 yards. Allen became the eighth player in the history of Notre Dame football to eclipse 4,000 career all-purpose yards.
With his sixth reception against Michigan State, Allen moved into first place all-time on the Irish receptions list for running backs with 110 career catches. He bested the previous school record of 109 held by Darius Walker (2004-06). Allen's 18-yard reception in the first quarter was also his longest of the season.
Allen Jr. recorded a career-best 29-yard run in the third quarter against Michigan. It bested his previous career-long rush of 26 yards against Connecticut on Nov. 21, 2009.
Allen Jr. ranks eighth on the all-time Notre Dame all-purpose yards list with 4,017 and sits 48 yards behind Darius Walker (4,065, 2004-06) for seventh all-time.
Allen Jr. also ranks in the top 20 among all active players in all-purpose running plays (ninth, 581), all-purpose running yards per play (ninth, 6.91), all-purpose running yards (12th, 4,017) and all-purpose running plays per game (17th, 16.1).
Allen Jr. rushed for a team-high 89 yards on 15 carries in the loss to Michigan. He added a nine-yard reception and nine-yard punt return.
Allen Jr. needs just 391 yards rushing to move into the top 10 all-time at Notre Dame.
Allen Jr. rushed for a game-high 93 yards on 18 carries in the victory over Purdue. He also added a career-best 38-yard punt return.
Allen Jr. did not participate in enough games in 2009 to qualify (missed the Purdue, Washington State, Navy and Stanford games due to an ankle injury), but would have ranked among the top FBS running backs in the nation in rushing yards per game (87.1, 41st) and yards per rush (4.91, t-66th). He would have also ranked 70th in the nation in all-purpose yards per game (114.1).
Allen Jr. became the second running back in Notre Dame history to eclipse 100 career receptions. His 110 career receptions rank atop the all-time list for Notre Dame running backs. He eclipsed Darius Walker's (109, 2004-06) previous school record. Allen Jr. also ranks tied for fifth all-time in career receiving yards by an Irish running back.
Senior walk-on PK David Ruffer has converted 10 consecutive field goals. The 10 straight field goals ranks tied for the third-longest streak in school history, but even more amazing is the fact that the streak has opened Ruffer's collegiate kicking career. He is a perfect 10 of 10 on field goals since attempting his first career field goal against Pittsburgh last season.
The 10 consecutive field goals to open a career is the second-longest such streak. Mike Johnston made the first 13 field goal attempts in his career (was the school record for consecutive field goals until sophomore PK Nick Tausch broke in 2009) during the 1982 season.
Ironically enough, Johnston was also a senior walk-on.
Ruffer connected on all three field goal attempts in the victory over Purdue, including a career-long kick of 46 yards. He added a 24-yard field goal in the loss to Michigan.
Ruffer was true from 33 yards in overtime against Michigan State.
TAUSCH, RUFFER SOLIDIFY IRISH KICKING GAME
The kicking tandem of Tausch and Ruffer put together one of the most accurate kicking seasons in Notre Dame history in 2009. Tausch connected on 14 consecutive field goals - a Notre Dame school record. The previous school record was held by Mike Johnston, who made 13 straight during the 1982 season. He not only equaled the school record for field goals in a game with five against Washington, but became the first place kicker to register five field goals in a game without a miss.
Tausch finished the season 14-of-17 on field goals. He finished in a tie for fifth in single-season history for field goals made.
Ruffer served as the Irish place kicker over the final three games of the 2009 season and converted all five of his attempts, including a pair of then career-long 42-yard kicks at Pittsburgh and Stanford.
The two combined to hit 19-of-22 field goals on the season.
TE'O MAKING IRISH OPPONENTS SAYING UH-OH
Notre Dame sophomore LB Manti Te'o leads the Irish total tackles (33), tackles on running plays (20), solo tackles (18), assisted tackles (15) and tackles for loss (3.5). He ranks tied for 15th in the FBS in tackles per game (11.0) and only three sophomores have made more tackles in 2010. Te'o registered the third-most tackles ever by a freshman in 2009. The only two players to register more tackles in their rookie campaign were future All-Americans Bob Golic (82, 1975) and Ross Browner (68, 1973).
Te'o has eclipsed 10 or more tackles in each of the last two games. He set a single-game career-high in tackles with 13 against Michigan. Te'o's previous high was 10 tackles against Washington on Oct. 3, 2009.
WILLIAMS, NEAL IN INK
Senior NG Ian Williams and senior LB Kerry Neal each played in their 40th career game last week. They are the only two Irish players to see action in every game since 2007.
THE JACKSON FIVE
Freshman WR Bennett Jackson has already registered a team-leading five solo tackles on special teams. He recorded four solo stops in his Irish debut against Purdue and added another tackle against Michigan.
Freshman WR TJ Jones was the first Irish freshman wideout in school history to catch touchdown passes in each of his first two career games.
Jones hauled in a 53-yard touchdown pass from Crist with 12:42 to go in the third quarter against Michigan to bring the Irish with seven points, 21-14. He recorded a five-yard touchdown reception with 10:20 left in the third quarter against Purdue to give Notre Dame a 20-3 lead.
Jones had already became the second freshman wideout in Notre Dame history to register a touchdown in the Irish season opener.
IRISH DEFENSIVE EFFORT AGAINST MICHIGAN BETTER THAN THE NUMBERS SHOW
Notre Dame held Michigan scoreless for 31:24 of game action from the second quarter until the last drive of the game. The Irish allowed 4.8 yards per play in 2nd half after allowing 9.2 yards per play in 1st half.
Prior to final drive, Notre Dame's defense had limited the Wolverines' offense to 125 yards on 39 plays (3.2 yards avg.) after halftime.
The Irish held Michigan to just 3-for-16 on 3rd down, forced 10 punts and registered five 3 & Outs.
Michigan's 10 punts last week were the most by a Notre Dame opponent since Rutgers punted 10 times against the Irish on Nov. 23, 2002.
Notre Dame limited Michigan's running backs to 30 yards on 13 carries (2.3 yards per carry).
In the first half, Michigan rushed for 189 yards on 17 carries, good for 11.1 yards per rush. The Wolverines totaled 296 yards in the first half, good for 9.2 yards per play. Notre Dame's defense limited Michigan to 44 yards on the ground on 11 rushes (4.0 yards per carry), 75 total yards and only 3.8 yards per play in the third quarter.
NOTRE-DAME MICHIGAN SERIES A NAILBITER
Ten of the last 20 Notre Dame-Michigan games have been decided by five points or less.
Seven of the last 25 games in the series have seen the winning points come in the final two minutes (1980, '88, '90, '94, '99, '09 and '10), including four that were decided in the final seconds ('80, '94, '09 and '10).
Michigan scored the winning touchdown with 27 seconds remaining in the game. It marked the fourth meeting between the two rivals where the deciding points were scored with less than 27 seconds to go in the contest. The Wolverines have captured each of the last two meetings decided so late into the contest. In 1994, Remy Hamilton kicked a field goal with two seconds left to secure a 26-24 victory in Notre Dame Stadium. Last season, Greg Matthews caught a five-yard TD pass from Tate Forcier with 11 seconds remaining to give Michigan a 38-34 win.
IRISH-WOLVERINES CHURNING THE STICKS
Notre Dame totaled 381 yards passing and 535 yards of total offense, both single-game highs in the all-time series with Michigan.
The 535 yards of total offense was the most for a Notre Dame team since Oct. 31, 2009 when the Irish rolled up 592 yards against Washington State.
The teams combined for 1,067 total yards, which is the most in the series between the Irish and Wolverines. The 2009 figure of 920 total was the previous high.
IRISH GO DOWN TO THE WIRE
Since the start of the 2008 season, Notre Dame has played 17 games that have been decided by seven points or fewer. The Irish are 6-11 in those games including a 34-31 overtime defeat at Michigan State last week.
Ten of Notre Dame's 12 games in 2009 were decided in the fourth quarter. The Irish won four games decided by a TD or less and lost six times by seven or less.
Notre Dame has already played two games in 2010 decided by seven points or less. In fact, six of the last seven and 12 of the last 14 games for the Irish have been decided by a touchdown or less.
Notre Dame played in its first overtime contest of 2010 and fourth over the last three years last week against Michigan State.
The Irish and Spartans have played in two overtime contests in series history.
Notre Dame drops to 3-8 all-time in overtime games and 0-2 against the Spartans.
DEFENSE STILL LOOKING FOR CONSISTENCY
Notre Dame registered 4.0 sacks against Michigan State, the second time in three games that the Irish have recorded 4.0 or more sacks. In fact, the Irish have already sacked the opposing quarterback eight times, which is nearly halfway to their entire sack total of 20.0 in 2009. Notre Dame also picked up 8.0 tackles for loss. It was the highest single-game total for the Irish against the Spartans since they registered 9.0 in the 2005 meeting. Notre Dame also forced Michigan State into four three-and-outs.
The Irish continue to win the battle on third down. Notre Dame limited the Spartans to 6 of 17 on third down, including denying Michigan State on each of its final five third-down plays. Even more impressive, the Spartans average length on its 17 third down plays was nine yards.
The Irish have limited their first three opponents (Purdue, Michigan and Michigan State) to just 28% on third down (14 for 50). In fact, over the last two outings, Notre Dame's third down defense held the Spartans and Wolverines to a combined 27% (9 of 23).
Notre Dame's rush defense was truly better than the final numbers indicate. If you remove Edwin Baker's 56-yard touchdown run, the Irish allowed 147 yards on the ground on 42 carries (3.5 yards/rush). Michigan State entered the contest averaging 7.8 yards/rush. In fact, the Spartans had 19 carries in the game for two yards or less.
KELLY'S SPREAD ATTACK PRETTY EFFICIENT
The Irish extended their streak of consecutive games with at least 20 or more first downs to 16 (dates back to the Hawai'i Bowl victory over Hawai'i in 2008).
Notre Dame totaled at least 20 first downs in each of its 12 games last season. The Irish had never gone through an entire season (of at least 12 games) with 20 or more first downs in each contest.
Notre Dame ranked tied for fourth in the FBS in first downs per game in 2009 (24.42).
IRISH OFFENSE, DEFENSE UNITS PENALTY FREE AGAINST PURDUE
Notre Dame committed just two penalties in its victory over Purdue. The Irish were not whistled for a single penalty on offense or defense. The two penalties both came on special teams.
The Irish have not completed a game with fewer than two penalties since Nov. 26, 2005. In a 38-31 victory at Stanford, Notre Dame was called for one penalty.
SPREAD ATTACK OPENED RUNNING LANES FOR ALLEN JR., WOOD AGAINST PURDUE
Notre Dame rushed for 153 yards and average 4.2 yards per carry in the victory over Purdue. The tailback tandem of senior Armando Allen Jr. and sophomore Cierre Wood totaled 151 yards on 25 carries. Allen Jr. averaged 5.2 per rush and Wood posted 8.3 yards per carry.
Allen Jr. (four) and Wood (four) also combined for eight rushes of 10 or more yards.
Allen Jr. gave the Irish a 7-0 lead with a 22-yard touchdown run at 2:01 of the first quarter. The touchdown was his eighth overall and seventh on the ground in his career. The scamper was the longest scoring run of his career.
Wood ripped off 16 and 15 yards on the ground in consecutive rushes, the first two carries his career. He added another 15-yard rush on Notre Dame's initial scoring drive of the afternoon. Wood totaled 41 yards on four carries on the drive (41 of the 84 yards on the drive came via the legs of Wood). He added a 38-yard kickoff return to set up great field position for the Irish early in the fourth quarter. Notre Dame started the drive at Purdue 41-yard line, but went three-and-out.
Notre Dame averaged just 128.2 yards rushing in 2009, which ranked 84th in the FBS. The Irish also managed only 3.84 yards per carry.
IRISH DEFENSE DEFINITELY BROUGHT THE HEAT AGAINST PURDUE
Notre Dame registered 4.0 sacks and 5.0 tackles for loss in the victory over Purdue. The 4.0 sacks were the most by the Irish since they picked up 5.0 against Washington State on Oct. 31, 2009.
The 4.0 sacks also ranked eighth-best by an NCAA FBS school in the opening week. In fact, only three of the seven schools that finished with more sacks than Notre Dame in its opener faced an FBS opponent and only two played a BCS conference foe.
The Irish also registered two interceptions (both inside their own 20-yard line), four pass break-ups and three quarterback hurries.
Notre Dame recorded only 20 sacks over its 12 games in 2009. The Irish averaged just 1.58 sacks per game, which ranked 89th in the FBS. With its 4.0 sacks in the season opener and 4.0 more against Michigan State, Notre Dame has already recorded 40 percent of the total output in sacks from a year ago.
IRISH DEFENSE CONTROLLED THE BIG PLAY IN SEASON OPENER
It was just one game, but Notre Dame's new defensive scheme seemed to get pretty solid revues in the opener. The Irish limited the Boilermakers' offense to only 10 points and allowed just 3.2 yards per carry (compared to 3.8 yards per rush in 2009).
Notre Dame forced Purdue into a trio of three-and-outs.
Purdue completed 31 passes on the afternoon, but the longest went for just 16 yards. The Boilermakers averaged just 5.2 yards passing per attempt and 7.1 yards per completion. By comparison in 2009, the Irish allowed 8.7 yards per pass attempt and 12.9 yards per completion.
Notre Dame also limited Purdue to 4.4 yards of total offense (322 yards on 74 plays) per play. Irish foes averaged 6.4 yards of total offense per play last season.
Notre Dame limited Purdue to three points in the opening half. It was the fewest points allowed by the Irish against Purdue in a half since the opening 30 minutes of the 2005 contest (Notre Dame led 28-0 at intermission).
The 23 points by Notre Dame were the fewest by the winning team in the Irish-Boilermaker series since 2003 when Notre Dame beat Purdue, 20-14.
Purdue finished with 12 points, which is the fewest for the Boilermakers in the series with Notre Dame since 1996 when the Irish blanked Purdue, 35-0.
Senior DB Gary Gray registered eight tackles, seven solo, in the first half alone. The eight tackles equaled his career-high and seven solo stops surpassed his previous career-high. Gray finished with a game-high tying and career-best nine tackles. He also got credit with a pass breakup on senior NG Ian Williams interception on Purdue's fourth down play from the Irish five-yard line.
Senior DB Darrin Walls picked up his third career interception at 4:27 of the first quarter. It was his first interception since picking up one against Purdue in last year's meeting.
Since 2007, Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly has compiled the seventh-most wins of any active NCAA FBS coach. Kelly has gone on to win 34 contests (34-8 overall) to tie him with Gary Patterson of TCU over that span. The only coaches ahead of Kelly in that time frame are Chris Peterson of Boise State (38), Mack Brown of Texas (38), Urban Meyer of Florida (38), Jim Tressel of Ohio State (35), Kyle Whittingham of Utah (35) and Nick Saban of Alabama (35).
Along with being near the top in outright wins, Kelly also sits tied for seventh place with Patterson in win percentage amongst FBS coaches. With his 34-8 mark, he holds a .810 winning percentage over the past four years. Peterson (.905), Brown (.905) and Meyer (.864) rank one, two and three respectively. Tressel (.833), Whittingham (.833) and Saban (.818) sit just ahead of Kelly.
Here is a look at the top 10 winningest active coaches since 2007:
Notre Dame once again played one of the nation's toughest schedules in 2009, as it faced eight teams that appeared in bowl games (Nevada, Michigan State, USC, Boston College, Navy, Pittsburgh, UConn and Stanford).
This season could prove to be just as tough as the Irish face seven teams that went to bowl games in 2009, including 2008 undefeated, Sugar Bowl champions and second-ranked Utah. Notre Dame also will play three teams that finished in the AP Top 25 (No. 15 Pittsburgh, No. 18 Utah, No. 22 USC). The following is a list of 2010 Notre Dame opponents and how they fared last week:
Being left out of the preseason poll is not always a bad indicator for Notre Dame or first-year head coach Brian Kelly, especially in recent years. Three times in the last 10 years (2000, 2002 and 2005) the Irish have been ranked in the final top 25 after not being ranked in the preseason poll. Only Boise State (five), Clemson (four), Boston College (four) and Oregon State (four) have had more final top 25 rankings without a preseason top 25 in the last 10 years.
Interestingly enough, Cincinnati has also been ranked in the final top 25 after not being ranked in the preseason poll on three seperate occasions and each came under Kelly's guidance (2007, 2008 and 2009).
As Brian Kelly continues his first season with the Irish, here are a few notes on Notre Dame's head coaches in their inaugural year.
The previous 28 head football coaches in Notre Dame history have combined to amass a 177-63-12 (.726) record in their first year at the helm. Since 1913, Jesse Harper's first season, Irish coaches have compiled a 112-44-5 (.711) in their initial campaign, including interim coaches Hugh Devore and Ed McKeever.
Since 1913, five Notre Dame coaches - Layden, Parseghian, Holtz, Willingham and Weis - have taken over a program the year after his predecessor turned in a .500 or worse record. All but Holtz, who went 5-6 in 1986, posted a winning record in his first season and the quintet had a combined 39-16 (.709) record in such seasons. The 2009 Irish went 6-6 under Weis.
Kelly was the first Irish coach to begin his Notre Dame tenure with the first two games inside Notre Dame Stadium since Terry Brennan in 1954 (21-0 victory vs. No. 4 Texas, 27-14 loss vs. No. 19 Purdue). Elmer Layden (1934) and Frank Leahy (1941) also opened their respective Notre Dame coaching careers with back-to-back home games. Layden split contests against Texas and Purdue, while Leahy upended Arizona and Indiana. Jesse Harper (1913) also opened his career with consecutive home games (87-0 rout vs. Ohio Northern, 20-7 victory over South Dakota).
The last Notre Dame coach to post a winning record in his first season with the Irish was Weis, who went 9-3 in 2005. The last Irish coach to turn in a sub - .500 season in his first year was Lou Holtz, whose 1986 team finished 5-6.
The longest winning streak for a Notre Dame head coach to begin his career with the Irish is nine games, by Harper (1913-14) and Parseghian (1964).
Kelly was the first Notre Dame coach to face Purdue at home in his first game with the Irish.
OPENERS AN INDICATOR?
Notre Dame is 102-15-5 in season openers, but have they been foretelling of the season ahead? Take a look:
The 101 seasons Notre Dame has won its opener, the Irish went on to post winning records 92 times (91.1%), with four losing seasons and five .500 records.
The 15 seasons the Irish lost their opener, the Irish posted winning records six times and a losing mark eight times (with one .500 season).
The five seasons Notre Dame registered a tie in its opener, the Irish had four winning records and one losing record.
NOTRE DAME IN SEPTEMBER
Notre Dame is 127-51-4 (.709) all-time during the month of September.
The Irish are 81-19-2 (.804) in September home games.
Notre Dame has an all-time mark of 41-30-2 (.575) in road games during September.
The Irish have gone 3-1 in September each of the last two seasons. (2009: Nevada, W, 35-0; at Michigan, L, 38-34; Michigan State, W, 33-30; at Purdue, W, 24-21). Notre Dame was 0-5 in the first month of the season in 2007.
WE'VE BEEN HERE BEFORE
Last weekend's game between Notre Dame and Michigan State marked the 21st time in school history the Irish have faced the Spartans the week following the Michigan game.
Notre Dame is 8-3 against the Spartans following a victory over the Wolverines, 5-4 following a defeat and 1-0 following a tie.
The Irish have knocked off Michigan and Michigan State in consecutive weeks eight different times (1980, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1993, 2002 and 2004).
Notre Dame has dropped both rivalry games four times (1986, 2003, 2007 and 2010).
Overall, the Irish are 14-7 against the Spartans the week after playing Michigan.
Notre Dame has faced Michigan 38 times in the series history and 15 of the meetings have come during the second week of the regular season. The Irish are 6-8-1 all-time when playing the Wolverines in week two.
Notre Dame has opened its season with Purdue on eight occasions. The Irish hold a 7-1 record in those season-opening meetings with the Boilermakers. Only two other programs, Michigan and Northwestern, have opened against Notre Dame more often that Purdue.
Here are the top five programs in terms of season-opening opponents for the Irish.
This year's opener with Purdue was the first opener with the Boilermakers since 1984. Notre Dame agreed to move the contest from Notre Dame Stadium to the newly opened Hoosier Dome. Future Heisman Trophy winner and College Football Hall of Fame honoree Tim Brown, then just a freshman, fumbled the opening kickoff to setup a Purdue touchdown. The Boilermakers would upset the No. 8 Irish, 23-21.
The most famous season opener with Purdue came during the 1966 season. Both teams were ranked in the top 10, Notre Dame at No. 6 and the Boilermakers at No. 8. Purdue was led by All-American Bob Griese, but quarterback Terry Hanratty and wide receiver Jim Seymour stole the show. The duo hooked up 13 times for 276 yards, including touchdowns of 39, 84 and seven yards, en route to a 26-14 Irish victory. Seymour's total of 276 receiving yards remains a single-game Notre Dame record. Notre Dame went on to capture the national title, while the Boilermakers captured their first and still only Rose Bowl title in school history.
FIRST-YEAR HEAD COACHES OPEN STRONG
When Notre Dame defeated Purdue in its season opener Sept. 4, head coach Brian Kelly continued a long trend of success among Irish mentors. Dating back to 1896, Irish skippers are 26-3 (.897) in their debut contests. Only Frank E. Hering in 1896 (4-0 loss to Chicago Physicians & Surgeons), Elmer Layden in 1934 (7-6 loss to Texas) and Lou Holtz in 1986 (24-23 loss to Michigan) failed to win their first game at Notre Dame. This record includes two wins by interim head coaches -- Ed McKeever in 1944 (58-0 win at Pittsburgh) and Hugh Devore in 1945 (7-0 win over Illinois) spelled Frank Leahy while he was off serving his country in World War II.
IRISH DEFENSE FULL OF YOUTHFUL ENERGY
Notre Dame first-year defensive coordinator Bob Diaco entered the 2010 season as one of the youngest coordinators in FBS football. Diaco, who was born Feb. 19, 1973, opened the campaign at 37. He ranks as the 24th-youngest coordinator in all of the FBS and eighth-youngest coordinator from a BCS conference institution.
There are only six defensive coordinators in the FBS that are younger than Diaco. Of those six, only one (Kirby Smart, Alabama) coaches at a BCS conference school.
IRISH DEFENSE SWITCHES TO 3-4
Brian Kelly and defensive coordinator Bob Diaco have 18 returning monogram winners on defense to work with in their first season and, of those 18, 13 players have starting experience for the Irish. Ten returning players started at least seven games in 2009 -- and nine players have started at least 10 games in their Notre Dame careers.
The Irish switch back to a 3-4 defense, featuring three down linemen, in 2010. That means players who made the transition to a 4-3 last year will resort back to the defensive front used in 2007 and 2008. Notre Dame will start a nose guard sandwiched between two defensive ends, but it won't be uncommon to see at least one outside linebacker walk up to the line of scrimmage, giving the Irish four or five players along the line.
DON'T FORGET THE ANNIVERSARY
The 2010 football season marks the 80th anniversary of the opening of fabled Notre Dame Stadium. The Irish have played 414 games in that facility to date and own a 307-102-5 (.748) record in the "House that Rockne Built."
The Irish were 4-3 in Notre Dame Stadium in 2009, running their home record to 111-43-1 (.719) over the last 25 years.
The most wins in a season by the Irish at home is seven by the 1988 national championship team and the longest home winning streak in Notre Dame football history is 28 games (from 11/21/42 through 9/30/50).
In 1955, the stadium's 25th anniversary, Notre Dame went 8-2 on the season for coach Terry Brennan, including a 4-0 home record. The Irish turned in a 9-2-1 overall record, and a 5-0 home mark, to commemorate Notre Dame Stadium's 50th anniversary in 1980. In 2005, the stadium's 75th anniversary, the Irish went 9-3 overall, participated in the Fiesta Bowl and went 4-2 at home.
Senior OG Chris Stewart will attempt the rarest of double duties this fall by playing college football while also undertaking the rigors of life as a law school student. He is believed to be the first football player in Irish history to suit-up for games on Saturday and attend graduate law classes during the week. According to a survey of FBS sports information directors, Stewart, who graduated cum laude in December '09 with a degree in history and two internships in immigration and labor law, is the only football player who will be enrolled in law school this fall.
Stewart is enrolled in Contracts, Criminal Law, Legal Research and Legal Writing I.
WALK-ON PLAYERS JOIN THE IRISH SQUAD THIS FALL
Eight walk-ons were added to the 2010 fall roster: junior P Mike Grieco (Glen Ellyn, Ill./St. Ignatius HS), junior S Chris Salvi (Lake Forest, Ill./Carmel Catholic HS), senior LS/DL John Belcher (Cheyenne, Wy./Cheyenne Central HS), sophomore DE Joe Marek (St. Paul, Minn./Cretin-Derham HS), sophomore OL Matt Tansey (Berkely Heights, N.J./Governor Livingston HS), junior LB Jonathan Frantz (Avon Lake, Ohio/St. Ignatius HS), sophomore WR Nick Fitzpatrick (Mishawaka, Ind./Marian HS) and freshman DB Joe Romano (River Forest, Ill./Fenwick HS).
Seven returning veterans have changed jersey numbers for the 2010 season. Junior DE Ethan Johnson will don No. 90, sophomore WR Robby Toma will sport No. 19, junior DE Hafis Williams will wear No. 94, sophomore WR Theo Riddick will don No. 6, senior TE/FB Bobby Burger will sport No. 41 and senior K Brandon Walker will wear No. 96. Senior K David Ruffer changed to the No. 97 two weeks into fall camp after wearing No. 48 during the 2008 and 2009 seasons.
Notre Dame sophomore OT Zack Martin and sophomore WR Robby Toma each had their first names incorrectly listed in 2009. Martin's first name is correctly spelled Zack (not Zach) and Toma's first name is correctly spelled Robby (not Roby).
A trio of Irish players underwent position changes during spring practice. Sophomore WR Theo Riddick moved from running back and senior LB Steve Paskorz returned to the position after two years at fullback. Senior OT Lane Clelland opened spring practice at defensive end, but has since returned to his original position.
THREE STUDENT-ATHLETES APPROVED FOR FIFTH YEAR
Three seniors on the University of Notre Dame football team were approved to return for a fifth year by the school's Faculty Board on Athletics.
C Dan Wenger, OG Chris Stewart and CB Barry Gallup Jr. have already graduated. Wenger and Gallup are enrolled in the graduate studies program, while Stewart is a first-year law student at Notre Dame.
RECRUITING CLASS OF 2010 FINISHES AT 20
Twenty high school seniors will have their names added to the University of Notre Dame's football roster and begin playing for the Irish in 2010.
The 20 student-athletes represent 11 different states - California (two), Colorado, Florida (three), Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois (two), Indiana, Kentucky (two), New Jersey, North Carolina (two) and Ohio (four).
Notre Dame is one of just four NCAA FBS programs to have not faced a non-FBS opponent since the current setup was established in 1978. The three other remaining schools that have yet to play a non-FBS opponent are USC, UCLA and Washington.
IRISH IN THE BRIGHT LIGHTS AND BIG CITY, TWICE
Notre Dame will play a pair of games in the greater New York City metropolitan area in 2010. The Irish will travel to the $1.3 billion dollar New Meadowlands Stadium on Oct. 23 to face Navy. Notre Dame and the Midshipmen met five times in the previous Meadowlands Stadium, including 2004. The Irish will also participate in the first football game inside the New Yankee Stadium on Nov. 20 against Army. Notre Dame and the Cadets have a long history of playing in New York. They met 22 times at old Yankee Stadium, facing each other annually from 1925-46, except for 1930, and again in 1969 in the 100th anniversary of college football. They also played at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn (1923), the Polo Grounds in Manhattan (1924) and Shea Stadium in Queens (1965).
Notre Dame has never played multiple games in the NYC area in the same season.
NOTRE DAME FOOTBALL-A FAMILY AFFAIR
The Golic family is one of just several father-son combinations who have played for Notre Dame represented on the 2010 Irish roster. Mike Sr. earned four monograms at Notre Dame from 1981-84, while Mike Jr. is a junior OL and Jake is a sophomore TE. In addition to their father, Mike and Jake's two uncles also played for the Irish. Bob was not only a four-year monogram winner from 1975-78, but he was a two-time All-American and helped the Irish to the 1977 National Title. Greg earned a pair of monograms in 1981 and 1983.
Irish junior QB Nate Montana is the son of NFL Hall of Famer and four-time Super Bowl Champion Joe (1975, 1977-78). The elder Montana helped Notre Dame to the 1977 National Championship.
Other current Notre Dame players whose fathers also played for the Irish include senior TE Bobby Burger (Bob, 1978-80), senior LB Brian Smith (Chris, 1981-84) and freshman WR TJ Jones (Andre, 1987-90).
NFL HAS LARGE INFLUENCE ON NOTRE DAME ROSTER
Several players also have family connections with the National Football League.
Junior QB Nate Montana's father Joe is widely considered the greatest quarterback in NFL history. Joe helped the San Francisco 49ers to four Super Bowls (he was named MVP in three). Joe was an eight-time Pro Bowl selection and inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 2000. Joe played in the NFL for the San Francisco 49ers (1979-92) and Kansas City Chiefs (1993-94)
Junior OL Mike Jr. and sophomore TE Jake Golic's father Mike Sr. played in the NFL forthe Houston Oilers (1986-87), Philadelphia Eagles (1987-92) and Miami Dolphins (1993). Their uncle, Bob, also played in the NFL for the New England Patriots (1979-81), Cleveland Browns (1982-88) and Los Angeles Raiders (1989-92).
Other players whose fathers played in the NFL include sophomore OG Alex Bullard (Louis, Seattle Seahawks, 1978-80), freshman WR Austin Collinsworth (Chris, Cincinnati Bengals, 1981-88) and junior ILB Anthony McDonald (Mike, Los Angeles Rams, Detroit Lions, 1983-92) and sophomore K Nick Tausch (Terry, Minnesota Vikings, San Francisco, 1982-89).
Junior ILB David Posluszny's brother Paul has played in the NFL for the Buffalo Bills (2007-present).
Sophomore P Ben Turk has two uncles that have played in the NFL. Matt is currently the punter for the Houston Texans (2007-10), but has also suited up for the St. Louis Rams (1996), Miami Dolphins (2000-01, 2003-05), New York Jets (2002) and Washington Redskins (1995-99). Dan played 15 years in the NFL for the Pittsburgh Steelers (1985-86), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1987-88), Los Angeles Raiders (1989-94), Oakland Raiders (1995-96) and Washington Redskins (1997-99).
NOTRE DAME EXCELS IN THE CLASSROOM
The University of Notre Dame and University of Miami shared the American Football Coaches Association's 2009 Academic Achievement Award, which is presented by the Touchdown Club of Memphis. Notre Dame and Miami recorded a 100 percent graduation rate for members of its freshman football student-athlete class of 2002. This is the eighth honor for Notre Dame.
Notre Dame has been recognized 28 of 29 years the award has been presented, the most of any school in the nation. Notre Dame has won the overall award eight times with the most recent coming in 2007. Notre Dame also won the overall award in 1982, 1983, 1984, 1988, 1991, 2001 and 2007. In 1988, Notre Dame became the only school to win the Academic Achievement Award and the National Championship in the same year.
SCHEDULE ANNOUNCED FOR FIRST FOUR 2010 FOOTBALL PEP RALLIES
Locations for the first four pep rallies for the 2010 University of Notre Dame football season have been determined - and include multiple locations around the campus.
The traditional, season-opening Dillon Hall pep rally was held on Friday, Sept. 3, in front of Dillon Hall on the South Quad of the University of Notre Dame campus. That rally drew a crowd of 14,000 students and fans.
The Sept. 10 rally prior to the Irish home game against Michigan was held at Irish Green, south of the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center on the very south edge of campus.
The Notre Dame-Stanford rally on Sept. 24 will be held indoors at Purcell Pavilion in the Joyce Center.
A Notre Dame-Boston College students-only rally Oct. 1, prior to the Irish road game at Boston College, will be held at Stepan Center.
The sites for four other Friday home-game pep rallies - Oct. 8 (Pittsburgh), Oct. 15 (Western Michigan), Oct. 29 (Tulsa) and Nov. 12 (Utah) - will be determined at a later date.
Rallies are expected to be held from 6:30-7:00 p.m. All pep rallies are free of charge. Outdoor rallies are subject to cancellation due to inclement weather.
NOTRE DAME KICKOFF LUNCHEONS
There's a whole new look to the Notre Dame Football Kickoff Luncheons held on the Friday prior to each Irish football home game.
The luncheons will still be held in the north dome of the Joyce Center - but there will be a different master of ceremonies each week, there's a brand new set on stage, and luncheon guests will have the chance to ask questions of Irish head coach Brian Kelly.
Guests from week to week will include a selection of Irish players and assistant coaches in addition to Kelly, as well as other special guests.
WHME sports director Bob Nagle will coordinate three luncheon guests each week that each will ask a question on a live basis of Notre Dame's head coach.
Tickets remain on sale for five luncheons for the 2010 season. Those events are slated for noon ET on Sept. 24 (Stanford), Oct. 8 (Pittsburgh), Oct. 15 (Western Michigan), Oct. 29 (Tulsa), and Nov. 12 (Utah) in the north dome (field house) of the Joyce Center.
Tickets are $23 each and can be ordered by writing to Athletics Business Office, 112 Joyce Center, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN 456556. Checks can be made payable to University of Notre Dame. There is a $3 handling fee per order. There are 10 seats per table. There's also a ticket order form available on und.com.
The Brian Kelly Radio Show began Sept. 2 - and University of Notre Dame football fans can watch the show live on the Notre Dame campus or listen on one of four radio outlets. Kelly will appear at all 12 shows at Legends on the campus, just south of Notre Dame Stadium. The show will air from 7:00-8:00 p.m. ET. Audio outlets include WSBT 960AM in South Bend, www.und.com, WXNT 1430 AM in Indianapolis, and Sirius/XM Satellite Radio. WSBT, WXNT and und.com will carry the show live; Sirius/XM will carry it Friday evenings at 8pm on Sirius channel 122 and XM channel 143.
Dates for the shows are Sept. 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30; Oct. 7, 14, 21 and 28; and Nov. 11, 18 and 22.
Hosted by Jack Nolan, the Brian Kelly Radio Show is a production of Notre Dame Sports Properties.
INSIDE NOTRE DAME FOOTBALL WITH Brian Kelly (TELEVISION SHOW)
Taped on Sunday afternoons, Inside Notre Dame Football will feature a recap of the week's contest, Notre Dame player features and more. The show can be seen locally Sunday evenings on WNDU-TV following the late local news. It will also re-air on WNDU-TV the following Saturday morning at 6:30 a.m. as well as 90 minutes prior to kickoff of Notre Dame home games. All shows can also be viewed on www.und.com beginning on Monday of each week. Inside Notre Dame Football airs on a total of 25 affiliates nationwide reaching nearly 67 million households.
THE OFFICIAL NOTRE DAME FOOTBALL POSTGAME SHOW
Irish All-Americans Reggie Brooks and Mirko Jurkovic join Jack Nolan for the Official Notre Dame Football Postgame show immediately following every Notre Dame football game. The show can be heard live on WSBT 960 AM and Sunny 101.5 FM and watched live worldwide on und.com. The show includes Coach Kelly's postgame press conference live, player interviews and video highlights on the und.com webcast.
NOTRE DAME STADIUM SCULPTURES
Four of Notre Dame's head football coaches, all of whom won at least one national title, are immortalized in sculpture form on the University's campus. Prior to the 2010 season, the four statues were moved to their new locations directly outside four of Notre Dame Stadium's six entrances -- and each gate was renamed in honor of the corresponding legendary coach.
In addition, the University recognized Dan Devine, coach of the 1977 national championship team, by renaming Gate A in his honor.
MOST-WATCHED MICHIGAN-NOTRE DAME GAME ON NBC IN 16 YEARS
NBC Sports' broadcast of the Sept. 11 Michigan-Notre Dame was the most-watched game featuring those two teams on NBC in 16 years and the most-watched Notre Dame on NBC game against any team in five years. In addition, the average viewership and rating for the first two Notre Dame on NBC games this season are the best in four years.
The Michigan-Notre Dame game was watched by 7.0 million viewers, making it the most-watched game on NBC between the two teams since September 10, 1994, when the Wolverines were ranked No. 6 and the Irish No. 3. It was also the most-watched Notre Dame game on NBC since October 15, 2005, when the then-No. 9 Irish hosted No. 1 USC.
The game was also the third-most watched Michigan-Notre Dame game ever on NBC (10.1 million, 1994; 7.3 million, 1992) and the 12th most-watched Notre Dame on NBC game ever.
The game generated a 4.5/10 rating and share, the highest for a game against Michigan in eight years (Sept. 14, 2002, 4.6/12) and highest for a Notre Dame on NBC game against any team in four years (Sept. 9, 2006, Penn State, 4.7/11).
Notre Dame on NBC is averaging 5.4 million viewers and a 3.5/4 rating for the first two games of the 2010 season, the best average in both categories since 2006 (6.5 million; 4.5/11) when the Irish began their home season by hosting No. 19 Penn State and No. 11 Michigan.
NBC Sports' broadcast of the Purdue-Notre Dame season opener on September 4 was up 74 percent and 69 percent in viewers and ratings, respectively.
NOTRE DAME ALUMNI SUPPORT TOPS IN THE NATION
Notre Dame is widely known for the support of its fans. The alumni have a lot to do with that support, and they back that up with their check books. According to research by US News & World Report, the Irish rank first in the nation in alumni giving among schools that have a Division I football program.
Notre Dame has an alumni giving rate of 44 percent, while 34 percent of Stanford alumni give back.