Photo by Rick Kimball/ISD
Notre Dame Football

The Back Corner Fade

September 11, 2019

This past weekend felt like going to a great restaurant where you can’t wait for the main course to get there. You waited patiently at the door to be seated then you waited to get your appetizer that just turned out to be okay. You hope that the main course is going to be better than what you just ate after hearing all the reviews from the paper, online, or from your friends, and finally, after what seemed like an eternity, the main dish gets put in front of you.

I had that feeling last Saturday. After getting a little taste of the Irish on Labor Day, I wanted more. I was curious to see if the “real” Irish were going to show up after seeing the “we look like a Sun Bowl contender” Irish yawned their way through the Louisville night. I wanted to know Saturday and not have to wait another seven days. Patience is a virtue as they say. Doesn’t mean we have to like it.

That being said, don’t act like you didn’t watch some “footbowel” (it is Bob Davie week after all.) Here’s what we learned.

Congrats to the Michigan Wolverines. I mean the excitement shown by the Corn-N-Blow players, students, and fans was just touching. Nobody, and I mean nobody, can celebrate a win over the United States Military Academy like people in Ann Arbor. Some of these fans are probably the same people that pound their message boards goofing on ND for playing Navy. Not so easy to beat a well-coached and disciplined triple-option team is it Champions of Everything East of State Route 23? Great effort by Army. Last year they took OU to the limit and this year Michigan. Either one would have been the Army’s biggest win since the Battle of the Bulge.

Joe Burrow and Sam Ehlinger sure put on a show Saturday night didn’t they? That was some of the best QB play from both sides in the same game that I can remember in recent memory. Both those kids just seem to have that “it” factor to them. Tough one for Texas to lose, but there’s no reason they can’t beat OU with that offense (and well the Sooners don’t play defense.) As for LSU, and all Coach O jokes aside, they’re good. Really good. They’ve always had next level talent all over the board to rival anyone in the country, they just haven’t had the trigger man to pull it all together. They have that now in Joe Burrow. The SEC West is gonna be a lot of fun over the next few months.

28-33 for 377 yards and 3 TD’s. Those were USC’s first time starter, Kedon Slovis’ numbers against Stanford in a resounding 45-20 win. I easily put David Shaw in the Top 5 of my “Coaches I Don’t Like” list, but he is very good. I’m shocked that they would let a first time starter drop that many yards on them. Either SC might be better than anticipated, Stanford stinks, or a little bit of both. I realize Lou or Elvis, or whatever Costello didn’t play…..but he doesn’t play defense. 

Willie Taggert or Jeremy Pruitt: who gets pushed out first? Twice losing big leads at home for Willie and flat out losing to Georgia State and a mediocre, and that’s probably being kind, BYU team for Pruitt. If you would have told me 10 years ago that this would be the state of the Tennessee Volunteers and the FSU Seminoles, I simply wouldn’t have believed it. If I had to lay odds, I would say Pruitt is gone first. The big issue there: nobody wants that job.

One to Week 3, and to be honest, this isn’t a banner week for marquis games. If ABC is trotting out Clemson at Syracuse as their Saturday Night Special, well, you get my drift.

Oklahoma takes the flying circus on the road to Westwood to take on UCLA in what should be a another long afternoon for Chip and the boys. Did Chip Kelly just forget how to coach or has the rest of the coaching world figured his act out? It’s one thing to lose to SC, Washington, Oregon, but starting 0-2 with loses to SDSU and Cincinnati? This just isn’t going well for the Chipper. OU 59-13

Pitt travels to Penn St for their annual, ok, every 5 years home and home, or “we’ll get the kids together when we can” rivalry. As a kid in the early 80’s, this was a must watch on Thanksgiving weekend. Names like Marino, Hugh Green, Curt Warner, etc, those were fun. James Franklin and Nard Dog……not the same ring to it. PSU 42-21

Hawaii heads to the mainland to take on a Washington Huskie team licking their wounds from a tough loss against Cal. As a football junkie, I love when the Rainbow Warriors are at home. Perfect way to end a Saturday is watching Hawaii throw the ball 57 times….in the first half. Rainbow QB Cole McDonald is a beauty: blond haired kid with dreadlocks that looks like he’s going straight from the game to surf his tail off. He also can really sling it. UW 45-32.

Mola Ram Sacrifice to the Cupcake Gods Game of the Week: Lamar Luttrell or is it Luttrell Lamar travels to take on Texas A&M (c’mon we couldn’t have “Davie Week” without mentioning the Aggies.) Lamar is coming off wins against NAIA Bethel College and a emotional OT win against a Jerry Rice-less Mississippi Valley State team. This should have them ready to battle the Noble Men of Kyle. A&M 66-6.

Bullet Bob. The Grinder. Beavis. Doofie. . . .a hot dog machine’s nightmare. This can only mean one thing: Bob Davie is coming back to South Bend with his band of Spanish Wolves. Well, sort of. As you all know, Davie won’t be making the trip due to health reasons. I’m sure I speak for everyone in saying that I hope he makes a full recovery and will be able to come back to his team, healthy, and very soon.

That being said, it would have been fun to see the look of helplessness on his face that we all remember 19 years ago in his last days. Let’s face it, New Mexico stinks. This game shouldn’t and won’t be close. Frankly, if the starters are still in after halftime, I would look at is as a huge letdown. Please don’t “Louisville” this one and let a team that’s probably just slightly better than Bowling Green in terms of where they’re at in strength of our schedule have any hope of making this a game past the 10 minute mark of the 1st quarter. 

As much as I’d love to crack jokes about Davie and his time at ND, I won’t. I’m not going to say anything about his man-crush on RC Slocum and Texas A&M. I’m also not going to mention the one time he took ND to the Fiesta Bowl against Oregon St, called them Oklahoma St in a press conference, and then went out and were embarrassed by Dennis Erickson, Ocho-Cinco, and the rest of their band of JUCO misfits. I would never say a word about him losing 5 straight to Michigan St. 

Why they hired this man to replace Lou Holtz, we’ll never know.

No, he won’t be there this weekend. But if you remember the movie “Patton” you’ll remember the line, when he’s disappointed to learn that Erwin Rommel wasn’t at a key battle: “If you defeat Rommel’s plan, then you’ve defeated Rommel.”

I’m sure it’ll be a peach of a game plan to defeat. ND 52-10

Beat New Mexico.

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