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Notre Dame Football

Notre Dame WR Jordan Faison Shines in Sun Bowl

December 29, 2023

Notre Dame’s offense entered Friday’s Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl with some question marks as several key players opted out of the game. 

It didn’t take long for the Irish to make a statement as Notre Dame went 96 yards in 11 plays to score on its first drive behind quarterback Steve Angeli. 

Perhaps the play that set the tone for the drive and potentially the game was Angeli finding Jordan Faison for a 55-yard gain on the fourth play from scrimmage. 

The deep shot was a play the Irish offense hadn’t hit with much consistency this fall and it only gave a first-time starter at quarterback and his true freshman receiver more confidence. 

“Me and Steve have been working for a while,” stated Faison. “From camp to throughout practice to this week. It was pretty easy to come in having Steve at quarterback. The ball is going to be in the spot it needs to be and you have to make a play on it.” 

In the third quarter, Angeli once again found Faison for 33 yards down the Oregon State sideline on a true 50-50 ball. Faison was almost blanketed in coverage, but the Florida native found a way to come down with it. 

“I didn’t really see much,” grinned Faison. “I saw the ball in the air, jumped for it and Steve gave me an opportunity to make a play. I was able to make it.” 

Faison, who led all receivers with five catches for 115 yards, scored on a 13-yard strike from Angeli in the third quarter to essentially put the game away at 24-0. 

The route was a complicated one, but one that Notre Dame had locked into the game plan. Faison started in the slot and gave the impression he was running a routine out. It got the safety to jump and Faison then turned back inside to complete the double move and score an easy touchdown.  

“We’ve been working on that play all week for their defense,” said Faison. “We saw the coverage we wanted and ran the play. It worked. Great call by Coach (Gino) Guidugli.” 

The performance led to Faison being named the MVP, which was something he wasn’t necessarily expecting. 

“I had no idea,” said Faison. “I was going right foot, left foot like Coach says and ended up here.” 

In a game where Notre Dame was missing several starters and an offensive coordinator, the Irish still rolled up 448 total yards and averaged 6.8 yards per play in the 40-8 win. 

Sure, Oregon State had its fair share of roster issues, yet Notre Dame made a statement and can build off an impressive performance over the next nine months. 

“It means everything," Faison stated. “We went through some tough losses during the season. I wasn’t playing during those losses, but I still felt those losses. Being able to come in and finish the season up is awesome.” 

Faison will now focus his immediate attention on lacrosse, but he also knows there is a bright future ahead for him and the Notre Dame offense heading into 2024. 

“The ceiling is very high for us,” explained Faison. “We work day in, day out. We want to be the best not only for ourselves, but our teammates. The young guys are always coming in and asking the older guys questions. Without the older guys, we wouldn’t be where we are today. Big future ahead.” 

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