The Irish Blogger Gathering is getting HYPED for this upcoming game against Oklahoma. This week, I drew Keith Arnold of Inside the Irish and forced him to write poetry, work as a psychologist, and DJ some beats. The typical. You can catch the rest of the IBG's as they roll in on the member sites:
On to the IBG…
People can't help but bitch about the run game. I've been down that path myself this season. The Irish just faced a damn good defense that is really good against the run. Brian Kelly has talked about passing the ball to open up the running game. Do you buy this line of thought? If Tommy Rees would have been a little more accurate against Sparty, perhaps this would have happened. Do you foresee more of that type of gameplan this season?
I do buy that thought, though I also understand why people grumble about not running the ball more. But I also remember how excited people were when a guy like Ty Willingham was hired, when Notre Dame could finally move into the new era of college football and find a quarterback that can actually beat people with the pass.
Michigan State wasn't changing their coverage scheme until Tommy Rees and the Irish receivers made them pay long. Why would they? If you can use two top-shelf corners and lock down guys like TJ Jones and DaVaris Daniels, you do it. That said, after rewatching the game, I think two things should have happened: 1) Tommy should've been more accurate with the football, and 2) Brian Kelly and Chuck Martin should have run some receivers across the field instead of continually down the field.
Until the running game finds some consistency up front and with a primary runner, Kelly's likely going to lean on the passing game and the deepest position on the roster: The wide receivers. But being more efficient in the passing game would be nice.
I've been trying to bring the Haiku to the forefront in the Anti-Previews this year. People are either shy, or just don't care (HOW DO YOU NOT CARE ABOUT HAIKU OH MY GOD WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?). Give me 1 haiku each to describe the offense, defense, and coaching. We care not for special teams in literature.
Everett's in Cali
Five backs are better than one?
Damn you Tommy Rees!
Big Lou is eating
Where did the pass defense go?
Let's do it, Tuitt!
Lose one, you're a bum
The honeymoon is over
Run the ball Kelly!
This is the part where I'm supposed to ask you about something about the upcoming game. But really, I just want to ask you… what is your frustration level with this team? The Irish are 3-1, so how ashamed do you feel about your frustration? Is ND looking at big picture problems, or are these fixable (preferably this week)?
Before I started writing about this team five days a week for five straight years, I'd have been pretty frustrated with this group. But honestly? Get through Oklahoma with a win and what more can you ask for? Are we so stupid that we forget that Charlie Weis' Irish found every way in the world to lose while Brian Kelly's team seemingly finds just about every way to win? Do we really have to go back to 2009, playing games where the team literally doesn't punt and someone finds a way to lose? Blowing seven double-digit point leads in the last five years?
This team certainly still needs to figure some very basic things out. The parts are still greater than the sum right now. And yes, I do think they've got to dedicate some more time to the run and finally see what the kids can do. But if we've learned anything in the past four seasons, Brian Kelly's teams get better. And I expect this team will as well.
Plus, let's just enjoy the season. It's already 1/3 done and one of the toughest three game stretches of recent memory is on tap.
BONUS: Because I rule, I get to ask a bonus question. Deal with it. Give me a youtube music video that would help describe this team heading into this game. One stipulation… must be a 90's R&B song. (think Jodeci, Boyz II Men, etc.).
After seeing Don Jon last weekend (enjoy at your own risk), it's gotta be Marky Mark's Good Vibrations: