The Subway Domer Awards 2008

The ballots are in, and it is time to announce the winners of this years Subway Domer Awards.

The Darius Walker Trophy.
The Darius Walker Trophy goes to the ND freshman that, like Walker in 2004, contributes greatly to the team at large and goes on to a very productive freshman year.

The winner is…

Michael Floyd WR. Floyd received 92% of the vote in a runaway victory over Trevor Robinson (1%), Kyle Rudolph (3%), and R.J. Blanton (3%). Floyd was third on the team in receptions (46), second in yards (702), and tied for first in touchdowns (7). He did all this while missing 99% of the Navy game, and all of the Syracuse and USC games.

The Jerome Bettis Trophy.
The Jerome Bettis Trophy goes to the ND sophomore that becomes a team leader either statistically or emotionally. In 1991, Bettis led the team with over 900 yards rushing and set a season scoring record with 120 points.

The winner is…

Golden Tate WR. Tate received 66% of the vote and beat out Brian Smith (23%), Harrison Smith (6%), and Jimmy Clausen (5%). Golden was first on the team in receptions (52), first in yards (903), and tied for first in touchdowns (7). He asserted himself as a true WR this year with better route running and an ability to go up and get the ball.

The Brady Quinn Trophy.
The Brady Quinn Trophy goes to the ND junior that has elevated his game from average to extra special. Quinn skyrocketed his status as an elite quarterback in his junior year throwing for over 3,400 yards and 29 touchdowns while only throwing 6 interceptions.

The winner is…

Raeshon McNeil CB. McNeil received 42% of the vote and beat out James Aldridge (23%), Sam Young (19%), and Dan Wenger (16%). McNeil is in a 4 way tie for second in interceptions with 2, but he had 10 pass breakups- which are the most since the Lou Holtz era. Bronzedshoe wrote, “Dudes. Raeshon made mistake after mistake this season- how is he in the lead for top junior?” Cornerback is the toughest position on the field after quarterback, every small mistake can be seen, however, he played extremely well and was arguably the most productive corner that Notre Dame had this season. I’ll say it again- 10 pass break ups are the most since the Lou Holtz era.

The Jeff Burris Trophy
The Jeff Burris Trophy goes to the ND senior that excelled in his senior year. Jeff Burris was a Consensus All-American his senior year and led the Irish in its legendary victory over #1 Florida State. Not only was Burris a brilliant safety, he was also used on the offensive side of the ball inside the 10 yards line as a running back. He was a beast.

The winner is…

David Bruton S. Bruton received 47% of the vote and beat out Kyle McCarthy (34%), Pat Kuntz (16%), and Mike Turkovich (3%). David was second on the team in tackles with 93, and first in interceptions with 3. He also made a huge play in the first game of the season against San Diego St. with a forced fumble inside the one yard line that basically saved the season. Threehills commented, “I was disappointed that Mike Anello was not listed as one of the top seniors. Despite playing only special teams, I think he made a more significant contribution this year than any of the other choices.” All I can say is, my bad, but as big of an impact player that he was on special teams- he allowed the touchdown against Washington that cost us a shutout while playing cornerback.

The Corey Mays Trophy.
The Corey Mays Trophy is awarded to the top 5th year senior of the season. Corey Mays was a virtual unknown until he broke out in his fifth and final year at Notre Dame. I remember him most for his crushing hit against Mike Hart at Michigan (right in front of me) that knocked the running back out of the game and sent me into a cheering frenzy while receiving death threats from the Michigan faithful that surrounded me. It was a fun moment.

The winner is…

Maurice Crum LB. Crum received 85% of the vote and beat out Justin Brown (8%) and Terrail Lambert (7%). Crum did not have his best season and recorded only 63 tackles and 2 sacks. He was however, a leader on the defensive side of the ball filled with leaders. His calming influence on the younger players and his ability to help those players maximize their skills set him apart from the other two candidates.

The Jeff Faine Trophy.
The Jeff Faine Trophy is awarded to the best offensive lineman in a season for Notre Dame. Faine was a monster at ND while playing center. His nasty demeanor and willingness to keep crushing an opponent- even after the whistle blows, should serve as an inspiration to all current and future Irish offensive lineman.

The winner is…

Michael Turkovich, Senior. Turkovich received 53% of the vote and beat out Sam Young (21%), Eric Olsen (13%), and Dan Wenger (12%). Turk was a sweet surprise this season for the Fighting Irish. The team was lacking a true left tackle and Turk stepped in and provided a stellar anchor in pass protection that helped reduce the sack ratio that was overwhelming in 2007.

The Autry Denson Trophy.
The Autry Denson Trophy is awarded to the best running back in a season for ND. Denson is the all-time leading rusher at Notre Dame with 4,318 yards. Denson was never a flashy runner, but quietly he racked up yard after yard for Notre Dame in 4 seasons. He was considered a finesse runner, but he was also a workhorse with over 850 career attempts.

The winner is…

Armando Allen, Sophomore . Armando received 64% of the vote and beat out James Aldridge (32%) and Robert Hughes (4%). Allen led the Irish in rushing yards with 576 yards. He also had 48 pass receptions which was second on the team behind Golden Tate. He was also second in all-purpose yards with 1365 yards that averaged out to 113.8 yards a game. Allen became the most consistent running back this year by running with better vision and his ability to move the chains with his pass catching ability.

The Jeff Samardzija Trophy.
The Jeff Samardzija Trophy is awarded to the ND wide receiver that excelled over his peers. Samardzija broke almost every single receiving record while playing for the Irish. His junior campaign of 71 receptions for 1,121 yards (15.8 avg.) and 13 touchdowns is considered the finest season ever for a Notre Dame wide receiver.

The winner is…

Michael Floyd, Freshman. Floyd received 67% of the vote and beat out Golden Tate with 33% of the vote. Floyd became a phenom very quickly at Notre Dame and helped turn the receiving corps into one of the best 1-2 punches in the country. Although Floyd was not first in any of the top 3 categories (receptions, yards,TD’s), he made Tate better and the proof is in the pudding as the Irish struggled to move the ball without Floyd against USC and Syracuse.

The Ken MacAfee Trophy
The Ken MacAfee Trophy is awarded to the top tight end for Notre Dame. MacAfee is the icon that all Notre Dame tight ends compare their careers to while playing in South Bend. He was a two time Consensus All-American for the Irish in 1976 and 1977.

The winner is…

Kyle Rudolph, Freshman. Rudolph received 94% of the vote. 6% of the vote went to “Ouch”, which basically stood for the fact that ND had no other options at tight end this year with injuries and suspensions. Rudolph did have a quality season with 25 receptions for 262 yards and 2 touchdowns. Kyle was a big part of the offense when things were clicking, but he disappeared as they faltered.

The Chris Zorich Trophy.
The Chris Zorich Trophy is awarded to the top defensive lineman. While at Notre Dame, Zorich became a legend as he played with emotion and violence play after play that has still yet to be seen on a consistent basis. Chris was also a two time Consensus All-American for the Irish in 1989 and 1990.

The winner is…

Pat Kuntz, Senior. Pat received 83% of the vote and beat out Ian Williams (13%) and Kerry Neal (4%). Kuntz was an animal in his last year at ND. He had 41 tackles, 8 tackles for loss, and 3.5 sacks. He also had 1 INT and 1 fumble recovery. His passion and will be greatly missed in 2009. Bronzedshoe wrote, “Pat Kuntz wins every category he is in because of his spirit. Kuntz is one of the few motivators this team has. His hair is just icing on the cake.”

The Bob Crable Trophy.
The Bob Crable trophy is awarded to the top linebacker. Crable is the epitome of toughness and was a tackling machine at Notre Dame while becoming a two time Consensus All-American in 1980 and 1981.

The winner is…

Brian Smith, Sophomore. Brian received 79% of the vote and beat out Harrison Smith (11%) and Maurice Crum (10%). Brian had 53 tackles, 2 sacks, and 2 fumble recoveries. He returned one of those fumbles for a touchdown against Michigan. Smith missed the USC and Syracuse games from an injury he suffered against Navy in which he missed 95% of that game as well.

The Todd Lyght Trophy.
The Todd Lyght Trophy is awarded to the top defensive back in a season. Todd Lyght was a shutdown corner and a standout on a team littered with All-Americans. He was a two time Consensus All-American in 1989 and 1990.

The winner is…

David Bruton, Senior. David received 52% of the vote and beat out Kyle McCarthy (29%), R.J. Blanton (15%), and Raeshon McNeil (4%). David already has won the Jeff Burris Trophy for the top Senior. Bruton should be the highest drafted Irish player in the upcoming 2009 NFL Draft.

The Urban Meyer Trophy.
The Urban Meyer Trophy is awarded to the top assistant coach. Meyer was an assistant at ND for both Lou Holtz and Bob Davie before moving on to become the head coach at Bowling Green, then Utah, and now Florida where he won a National Title in 2006 and is playing for another this season.

The winner is…

Corwin Brown, Defensive Coordinator. Corwin received 61% of the vote and beat out Jon Tenuta (25%), Rob Ianello (13), and Jappy Oliver (1%). Since Brown arrived in South Bend, he has brought a fire and passion to the defensive side of the ball that hasn’t been there since 2002. Brown is a fierce recruiter and many young commits on both sides of the ball list Brown as a big reason that they committed to Notre Dame.

The Mike Golic Trophy.
The Mike Golic Trophy is awarded to the top Verbal Commit up to this point. With National Signing Day still a few months away, anything can happen. Golic was following in his brother Bob’s footsteps and was the first commit for his class. He passed that tradition on to his Sons, as Mike Jr. and Jake were the first commits in their respective classes as well.

The winner is…

Cierre Wood RB. Wood received 60% of the vote and beat out Tyler Stockton (22%), Shaq Evans (11%), Zeke Motta (2%), and Chris Watt (5%). Wood is looking to be an instant impact player in 2009 as a running back and kick returner.

Top Moment in 2008.
Notre Dame’s ass whooping it handed to Michigan. Sure, it was the worst Skunkbear team ever, but anytime you smoke your rival like that- it’s sweet. The Michigan game received 55% of the vote and beat out Mike Floyd enrolling at Notre Dame (37%), Shutting Stanford up (6%), and sending Tiller out with a loss (2%).

Worst Moment in 2008.
The meltdown against Syracuse on Senior Day. The Syracuse game received 80% of the vote and beat out the North Carolina pick 6 that was the root of the second half slide (5%), The Pitt 4OT loss after having a double digit lead (10%), and another beatdown at the hands of USC (4%).

The Tim Brown Offensive MVP Trophy.
The Tim Brown Trophy is awarded to the player on offense that, like Brown, is the keystone that everything revolves around. Tim Brown is the last Heisman Trophy winner for ND when he won it in 1987.

The winner is…

Michael Floyd, Freshman Wide Receiver. Floyd received 50% of the vote and beat out Golden Tate (41%), Armando Allen (4%), and Jimmy Clausen (4%). We saw the damage. When Floyd didn’t play, Notre Dame struggled and the other dynamic WR Golden Tate, was not as effective. This is an amazing accomplishment for a freshman. Floyd has already won the Darius Walker Trophy and the Jeff Samardzija Trophy.

The Michael Stonebreaker Defensive MVP Trophy.
The Michael Stonebreaker Trophy is awarded to the MVP of the defense. Stonebreaker was a killer at linebacker for the Irish and was a two-time Consensus All-American in 1988 and 1990. He also has what is perhaps the greatest name in linebacker history.

The winner is…

Kyle McCarthy, Senior Safety. Kyle received 42% of the vote and beat out David Bruton (36%), Brian Smith (12%), and Pat Kuntz (12%). Kyle was was passed over in both the Jeff Burris and Todd Lyght Trophies, but his team leading 103 tackles to go along with 2 interceptions helped anchor a defense that saw some improvement from 2007. Kyle was a very pleasent surprise while taking over for a 4 year starter in Tom Zbikowski and he should return for a fifth year in 2009.

The Rocket Trophy.
The Rocket Trophy is awarded to the top special teams player. Rocket Ismail was one of the greatest threats in history on special teams returning kicks. Everytime he touched the ball, people held their breath. He is also considered by some to be the greatest player in College Football history to never win a Heisman. I say he was robbed.

The winner is…

Mike Anello, Senior Gunner. Mike won in a landslide. He took 100% of the vote. His story of walking on to the team and earning a scholarship these past two seasons is better than anything that Rudy has to offer. he is a fantastic kid, who along with his teammates made Notre Dame #1 in kickoff coverage. Mike had 23 tackles, 2 forced fumbles, and a blocked kick. He was a stud in every sense of the word.

The Moose Krause Team MVP Trophy.
The Moose Krause Team MVP is exactly what it is- the overall team MVP and maybe more. Moose was a living, breathing legend on Notre Dame’s campus for 60 years and his legacy continues. He is Notre Dame forever. He is Mr. Notre Dame and what the winner should try and emulate.

“Moose Krause was, without question, the greatest ambassador of Notre Dame goodwill.” – Ara Parseghian.

“Moose Krause was a perfect example of why Notre Dame has meant what it has to so many people over the years.” – Lou Holtz.

The winner is…

Michael Floyd, Freshman Wide Receiver. Floyd received 27% of the vote while narrowly beating out Golden Tate (24%), and David Bruton (20%). Floyd has won every category he was in this year and for good reason. Floyd is a dynamic player and is likely a legend in the making. His career should be watched with great interest as it may contain that thing that Moose embodied and Irishfans demand- greatness.

About The Subway Domer

Warlord and Emperor of the Subway Alumni... also, I do this "dad" thing pretty damn well.