Keith Arnold interview on SolidVerbal.com

by Travis Normand

If you love college football and you are not listening to the SolidVerbal.com podcast, you are missing out.

As readers of this blog know, I post random items and thoughts as I find them.  This means I post a lot of stuff that is anything but “timely.”  As it works out, I tend to find things later than most, which means I post about them later as well.  However, this isn’t always a bad thing.

For example, Ty and Dan (co-hosts of SolidVerbal.com) interviewed Keith Arnold of the NBCSports.com blog “Inside the Irish” on January 4, 2013.  Had I listened to the interview that very same day, I may not have found it as interesting as I did.  Instead, I listened to the interview today (Jan. 14), a week after the national title game.

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Ara Parseghian to accept “Contributions to College Football” Award

For Immediate Release
Nov. 28, 2012

ARA PARSEGHIAN TO ACCEPT CONTRIBUTIONS TO COLLEGE FOOTBALL AWARD PRESENTED BY THE NATIONAL COLLEGE FOOTBALL AWARDS ASSOCIATION

FORT WORTH (NCFAA) – Legendary University of Notre Dame football coach Ara Parseghian, who took Fighting Irish from the depths of despair to national prominence in the 1960s and 1970s and later helped establish his own Medical Research Foundation, has been named the recipient of the 11th annual Contributions to College Football Award presented by the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA).

Parseghian, 89, will accept the award on ESPN during The Home Depot College Football Awards, airing live from the Atlantic Dance Hall at Disney’s BoardWalk at the Walt Disney World Resort on Thursday, Dec. 6 at 7:30 p.m. ET.

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Notre Dame’s Te’o wins 2012 Bronko Nagurski Trophy

Notre Dame - 16KDec. 3, 2012
For Immediate Release

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FWAA) – Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o, who has helped put the Fighting Irish on the cusp of their first national title in nearly 25 years, claimed the 2012 Bronko Nagurski Trophy on Monday night.

The 6-2, 255-pound senior from Laie, Hawaii, became the 20th winner of the trophy, which annually is awarded to the best defensive player in college football as voted upon by theFootball Writers Association of America (FWAA). Te’o received the award on Monday night at a banquet at the Westin Hotel that is sponsored by the Charlotte Touchdown Club.

“It’s definitely a great accomplishment for me.” Te’o said after receiving the trophy. “I’ve ways wanted to be the best. For this to happen helps me to know I’m heading in the right direction. The formula is the same: Hard work leads to success as long as I keep doing it.”

Coincidentally, his head coach, Brian Kelly, was the keynote speaker at the banquet. Te’o is the first Notre Dame player to win the Bronko Nagurski Trophy and only the second finalist from the school.

To see the original release in full form, click HERE

Building a case for Notre Dame

by Travis Normand

No, I am not actually building a case for Notre Dame yet.  Like I said last week, they still have to play USC, and I am reserving judgement until after that game.  However, this doesn’t mean that others aren’t already trying garner support for Notre Dame’s number one ranking.

I received the following notes and stats today in an email from Notre Dame’s sports information department.  I know that a lot of people are not very impressed with the Irish, but take a minute to read the following information.  It may not change your opinion, but you have to admit,  some of these facts are pretty intriguing.

What is Notre Dame’s style?

  • It stops the run and runs the football. The Irish are one of four teams in the FBS that rush for more than 200 yards per game and allow less than 100 yards per game. Of those four teams, though, the Irish are the only team to have faced only FBS competition (no games vs. FCS teams).
  • It’s a stifling defense led by Manti Te’o that ranks No. 1 in the nation allowing 10.0 points per game. Only two FBS defenses in the last 10 years have allowed fewer points per game than this year’s Notre Dame defense.
  • It’s an improving offense under first-year starter Everett Golson that played one of its best games of the year today. The Irish totaled 430 yards of offense in the first half today vs. Wake Forest.

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by Travis Normand

I found this over at NDFootball.Wordpress.com (Strong and True, The Notre Dame Football Blog) and wanted to share it.  I am not yet making a case for Notre Dame to be in the National Title game, but this visual representation of how well the Irish defense has played this season is very impressive.

Some people will argue that Notre Dame hasn’t been impressive enough (overall) this season.  However, one cannot argue that the Irish defense has been anything less than amazing against the competition it has played.

The next measuring stick for Notre Dame’s defense will come on November 24, when the Irish face USC.  Of all the opponents that Notre Dame has faced thus far, only one of them has a scoring offense ranked in the top 50 (by points per game) — Oklahoma is ranked 13th at 39.78 points per game.  USC’s offense is currently ranked 26th (tied with Georgia) scoring 36.9 points per game in 2012.  Most pollsters will probably wait and see what Notre Dame is able to do against this USC offense before they decide whether or not the Irish have a legitimate claim to one of the two spots in the BCS Championship game.

Notre Dame Football Blog

source:

The Irish are 10-0 after defeating Boston College last Saturday, and both the offense and defense made solid contributions in the game. Notre Dame’s offense scored a touchdown on three of its first four possessions, but methodical drives by both teams kept the overall drive count in the game low. The defense kept the Eagles out of the end zone all night, and recorded four sacks, a fumble, and an interception.

The story of the season has been defensive dominance, as we have documented in our Drive Charting posts all year long. The chart above illustrates one of Notre Dame’s most remarkable defensive stats, preventing opponents from driving the length of the field to the end zone. On 93 opponent drives started at or inside the opponent’s 40-yard line, the Irish have given up one touchdown. That 3-play, 75-yard scoring drive by Navy occurred on the sixth opponent possession of…

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