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NDNation.com Staff: Scott Engler - Michael Cash - John Vannie - Mike Coffey - Kayo - Bacchus

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Navy Humbles Inept Irish

posted by John Vannie
Navy raced out to a 14-0 halftime lead against an unprepared and utterly befuddled Notre Dame team on Saturday, then relied on a strong red zone defense to thwart an Irish comeback. The 23-21 upset win is the second for the Midshipmen in the last three years after 43 consecutive losses to Notre Dame, and may become too great a burden for Coach Charlie Weis to survive.

The Irish were completely undisciplined on defense. It looked as though there was no plan other than to allow bigger, stronger and faster athletes to chase smaller and slower Midshipmen. Navy’s execution flummoxed Notre Dame throughout the contest, and the Irish failed to adjust to the fullback dive play or cover the pitch man.

Offensively, Notre Dame made numerous unforced errors and blew several scoring opportunities with a combination of poor play calling and mental breakdowns. Four first half possessions ended badly as the Irish dug a 14 point hole. The game plan was built around the pass and failed to take advantage of the tremendous physical advantage enjoyed by the offensive line. The result was a mere 60 yards in 20 carries. Conversely, Navy gained 348 yards on the ground in 56 attempts.

The Midshipmen scored on their first two possessions while Notre Dame fumbled and missed a field goal. Fullback Vince Murray’s 25 yard burst on the first play of the second period made it 14-0, and the Irish continued to shoot themselves in the foot. The next drive stalled when Notre Dame reached the two yard line but could not score in four plays, and Tausch missed another three pointer a few minutes later. Navy’s Joe Buckley returned the favor with his own missed 30-yard field goal to end the first half.

Robert Hughes’ one yard run capped the first scoring march for Notre Dame early in the third quarter, but it took Navy only a few plays to respond. When Ricky Dobbs executed a perfect play action fake and found Greg Jones on a 52-yard strike over the confused Irish secondary, Navy’s lead stood at 21-7.

Jimmy Clausen led the offense downfield as the quarter came to a close, but the drive abruptly ended in disaster. On first down from the Navy ten, Clausen scrambled and took off toward the end zone. He was met at the one yard line by the Midshipmen and coughed up the ball as he went down in a heap. Although the Irish quarterback recovered quickly on the sidelines, Murray carried Navy out of the shadow of its goal with a 39 yard rumble through the Notre Dame defense.

The Irish finally held and Clausen returned to try again, but another miscue in the red zone resulted in a turnover. Michael Floyd was blocking downfield on what he thought was supposed to be a screen pass, and Clausen’s throw hit him in the back. The ball popped into the air and into the arms of Navy‘s Ram Vela with ten minutes left in the game.

Driven by desperation, Notre Dame’s defense finally dug in and stopped the Midshipmen. Clausen then wasted little time in passing the Irish 91 yards for a score to cut the deficit to 21-14 with just under five minutes remaining. The defense did its job once again, but a 55 yard punt put the hosts in another deep hole. This time, Navy’s defense answered the mail with two consecutive sacks. The second, by Craig Schaefer, resulted in a safety with 1:04 on the clock. Although Notre Dame managed a late touchdown after recovering an onside kick, it served only to make the final margin 23-21.

Navy’s offense clearly outplayed Notre Dame and the Midshipmen deserved to win because its defense made plays in scoring territory when it mattered most. The Irish defenders were repeatedly out of position and the staff failed to make adjustments to an embarrassingly poor plan. The loss cannot be written off to bad luck despite the turnovers and missed opportunities. Navy is not in Notre Dame’s class from a talent standpoint, but they were fundamentally superior and the better coached football team.

The result supports the notion that Notre Dame’s prior success this season was built on a weak schedule and Clausen’s brilliant play. Any of the victories against Purdue, Michigan State, Washington and Boston College could have gone the other way, and wins in the next three games are far from certain even if the team is at full strength.

Let’s take a look at a few questions that helped to determine the outcome:

Will Notre Dame be able to sustain drives by avoiding penalties and methodically moving downfield? Not really, since far too many drives ended in frustration.

Can the Irish safeties keep Navy from making long scoring plays? No, the pass from Dobbs to a guy who had only three receptions coming into the game was just plain inexcusable.

Will Dobbs be forced to put the ball in the air 20 times or more? No, but Notre Dame threw it 51 times.

Can the Irish special teams keep Navy from starting drives in good field position? It was Navy’s special teams that kept the Irish in a hole. Notre Dame never punted but still could not win.

Will Notre Dame exceed 200 yards rushing? The worst part is they didn’t even try.

Will Michael Floyd’s presence allow Tate and Rudolph to take advantage of single coverage? The passing game worked well between the 20’s, but that wasn't enough.

Can the Irish offensive line keep Clausen from hitting the turf? Not at the end when Navy iced the game.

Will Notre Dame secure the outcome in strong fashion or will they have to hold on once again? What was I thinking?

The next opportunity is at Pittsburgh, and the program must not allow a repeat of last November’s slide that nearly cost Charlie Weis his job. It may already be too late, but another loss will surely convince those still firmly entrenched in denial to finally accept the very painful reality of another failed regime.
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Anonymous OC Irish said...

The next opportunity is at Pittsburgh, and the program must not allow a repeat of last November’s slide that nearly cost Charlie Weis his job. It may already be too late, but another loss will surely convince those still firmly entrenched in denial to finally accept the very painful reality of another failed regime.

What does it matter at this point? Are you referring to recruiting at this stage? Other than the Pollys, who needs convincing that this is indeed a "failed regime"?

11/08/2009 01:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think we are at a crossing point where the admin and swarbick need some cojones and not dilly dally on scheduling, recruiting and hiring a new hc. While I did not get the part of cowardice on the last article I do agree that without a state of emergancy cojones by the admin, we may as well consider the nd program a perrennial middle of the pack with an occcasional cinderella year and Weis being about the best we can get out there. This december, Swarbick will have to truly prove if he handles things with more leadership than his last predecessor....In the meantime I guess enjoy what's left of the season...

11/08/2009 02:18:00 AM  
Anonymous John Vannie said...

There are still people out there who have not figured it out. I can't protect them any longer. I'm past the point of hoping for a turnaround. Those with a vested interest in ND football need to demand better from those charged with running the program.

11/08/2009 02:24:00 AM  
Anonymous Saving the fan base said...

I have been one of the biggest Charlie supporters time and time again over the past 5 years, but today was it. The fan base is already slipping and this lose is 100% unacceptable. I am not a Weis hater, but at some point you have to save the program and Weis is not the guy to do that. It saddens me to see on other web sites the Charlie defenders make excuses and claim how this year isn't that bad. That is the problem with the younger fans, all they have seen is losing and are begining to accept decent or below decent teams instead of demanding the commitment to excellence Notre Dame once had.

11/08/2009 03:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder how Toryan Smith would have done stuffing the fullback dive since he led the team in tackles against Navy last year.

We'll never know because the schematic advantage was to keep him off the field.

11/08/2009 03:52:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The fat man has done something that Faust, Davie and Willinham never did and that is losing to Navy. Not only has he lost but he has lost the last two times at ND sdadium.

I think it is time for him to go.

11/08/2009 03:52:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Weis is an embarrassment and a fraud.
4 million/year for this kind of nonsense?

Shameless, really, and should be clear to everyone -- if there was
ever any doubt -- that the guy simply cannot coach.

Only question remaining is if the university will again screw up the next hire.

I sure hope not.

GO IRISH! Get a real coach who's as good as his players, and someone who actually played the game.

11/08/2009 05:26:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent analysis once again Vannie. In my 30+ years I don't think I've seen an ND defense that was less prepared. It was absolutely maddening to watch Navy gouge our defense for big yards repeatedly. I can't help but wonder what the Temple coaching staff could see that our vaunted staff could not. I'm convinced that Weis couldn't successfully coach a Pop Warner team. The big question still remains....who is going to want to come here? I think we better start the Hail Mary's now...

11/08/2009 06:52:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now is not the time to get down on Charlie and the boys. We can still win out and make a BCS bowl. So we had a few bad breaks against a well-coached Navy team. It happens every once and again.

Don't turn your back on the Irish when they need you the most!

11/08/2009 07:01:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a service academy graduate, I was proud to see Navy play so fiercely for 60 minutes. As a Notre Dame fan, I was disappointed to see the Irish play with no discipline, no passion, or sense of pride for who they are. The defense in particular was out there just going through the motions. The O line continued to make bone-headed penalties and allow critical sacks at the end of the game against guys much smaller. Sorry fellas...that won't get it done against a team that fights you on every single snap. Notre Dame has something to learn about effort and discipline, and hopefully they learned a little something yesterday from guys who are smaller and slower but clearly out-executed them and obviously showed a lot more fight. I think Notre Dame's discipline problems rest with the coaching staff and although I'd love to see Coach Weis succeed, he can't seem to get Notre Dame over the hump.

11/08/2009 07:42:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is nothing a good jump ball to the corner of the end zone won't fix.

11/08/2009 07:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You could see in in his eyes asnd demeaner after this season even afetr the squeeky wins, that CW himself recognizes that he is in over his head and unable nto compete with college head coaches.

11/08/2009 08:13:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Get real: If we are lucky, we will finish 7-5 and go to a crappy bowl, post a win against an inferior opponent, and Swarbick and Jenkins will mouth their usual crap about "going in the right direction" and "all the pieces are coming into place," blah, blah, blah.But look at the bright side: At least we can look forward to a new YouTube video of Hitler reacting to ND's coaching situation! The last one was hilarious!

11/08/2009 08:21:00 AM  
Anonymous James said...

I have made this post several times in the last few years: Let's play coach and pick the top players from ND and their opponents each week. So far this year, you would only pick a majority of our guys against Nevada and Washington State. The least is obviously against USC: I pick JC and maybe GT in that game. In yesterday's game, I pick JC, GT, MF, and KR. The rest on offense are the Navy guys and you might as well take the entire Navy defense. This is how low the program has sunk.

You guys who think we are talented must remove your old blue/gold sunglasses. Yes, we are better than two years ago, but did you watch how the defense was completely faked on almost every play. Some of these guys may be quick and fast, but they are not able to anticipate and this skill is what makes a good football player.

I wish there were a simple solution, and I feel I am joining the ranks of those who believe CW is a total fool.

BTW, could you imagine CW taking a speech communications class at ND today? He sounds child-like in his halftime and post game interviews (I stopped counting his 'you-knows'). Anyone have any idea why he wasn't interviewed yesterday? yesterday?

I am an old timer who blames all this on Lou Hotltz for having his son call the plays when Tom Clements stood on the sideline doing nothing. Can you even imagine how good we would have been and would be if we were in the 15th year of Clements being our coach?

Go Irish.

11/08/2009 08:22:00 AM  
Blogger Will said...

Sadly, with the way that our AD handled the WMU fiasco, I have little confidence that he is doing any of the necessary leg work right now to get us a better coach.

This last loss is just completely inexcusable... lose to Navy twice at home? You have got to be kidding me.

Oh well, Go Irish, Beat Panthers (please)!!!!!

11/08/2009 08:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One would hope that losing to Michigan, USC and Navy in 2009 is enough to get rid of Weis. I could stomach an excuse in 2007, but not now.

11/08/2009 08:26:00 AM  
Anonymous RyGuy said...

The thread by which ND has been hanging by in 4 of their 6 nailbiting wins finally snapped vs a much better-coached, hungrier Navy team. Hats off to the Middies. But more losses to teams with far inferior talent cannot be tolerated by anyone at ND. This is yet another embarrassment (like Navy 2 years ago, Syracuse last year, etc). We all know the wins vs MSU, Purdue, Washington, and BC could easily have gone the other way, so it was only a matter of time before ND got the short end of the stick in the final minutes. That happened vs Mich and USC and now again vs Navy. So here we are teetering on the edge of utter disaster again with a tough slate of games in Nov. I sure hope the AD is compiling a short-list of proven college coaches because Weis isnt working out as we had all hoped. No, Charlie isnt to blame for Parris' fumble, Clausen trying to make a couple plays and coughing it up twice, or Tausch's missed FGs that all cost ND this game. But his teams just dont always come to play, look confused at times, and consistently get beat. That's on the coaching staff and that needs to change. Yes a coaching change will all but insure that Clausen goes pro, but that is pretty much inevitable anyway given that A) he's a stud and his draft status is skyrocketing each week and B) the April 2010 draft is the last chance for rookies to make tens of millions in guaranteed money upfront before a rookie salary cap/sliding scale goes into effect. On another note, that guy coaching Cincinnati...what's his name again?...seems to be getting the Bearcats very well-prepared to dominate opponents...just a thought.

11/08/2009 08:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

At least this will be the big mans final season... Bring on Chucky!

11/08/2009 08:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Charles in charge can't be allowed to contintue. I know if the irish win out though, they will come up with an excuse to keep him. I don't think winning out is possible now though. Sir Charles has lost his ability to lead (if ever he had it.)

11/08/2009 09:08:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Notre Dame is known worldwide...is famous because of it's past football glory and Catholicity. The wealth that has poured into that university system would never have happened without the success of Knute Rockne, Leahy, Parseigien, Devine, and Holtz! No way. ND would be just a little small Catholic University sitting out in an Indiana cornfield. Period. Now it seems the university "powers that be" have forsaken both. Notre Dame is an elitist school for the most part. A blind man can see what all of this is about. The people that run ND are entrenched in keeping ND an elitist university. They are not interested in bringing in the type of kids needed to consistantly win championships. No one with blemish....no average to a little above average type football athlete need apply.

It is sad, it is sickening, it is hypocisy at it's highest level and it is diabolical as well. I won't even go into the diabolical. Unless there is some major change from "within"....what you see is what you will get!

11/08/2009 09:10:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How much more embarrassment do we need to endure for the powers to be to realize it's time for a change? All we hear are excuses and disecting week after week of what went wrong. Yet, week after week it is the same old story. Like someone said recently, Notre Dame needs to change the sign from "Play like a champion" to "Play like a competitor" cause that's all we have become. It saddens me to see such a storied football program be reduced to such a mediocre one. It also saddens me to realize if it continues the way it is, I will never see another national championship in my lifetime or even a BCS bowl game.

11/08/2009 09:10:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This loss to Navy was a slap in the face. The team didn't appear to be ready to play. With that being said, Coach Weis has momentum to continue to build the team. Before Navy, ND was close to an undefeated season with near wins vs Michigan and USC. Stay the course with Charlie Weis. A new coach may not make things better than they can be for another several years. I believe Weis can win and these lessons he is learning will benefit the organization. We need the final piece on Defense and watch out top 25!

11/08/2009 09:14:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How can the Irish lose to a group of guys who have no chance of going pro and play only for pride in their academy? Wait a minute, I just answered my own question!

11/08/2009 09:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Jim Kress said...

I just purchased a copy of the DVD "Echoes Awakened" and immediately watched it. I highly recommend the DVD to any ND fans who want to see what ND should be looking for in a REAL coach.

My initial reaction to the hiring of Ara (as described in the "Echoes Awakened" DVD) vs the hiring of Charlie was that today we live some alternative universe where a major university (ND) was so desperate to get a football coach it was willing to hire an offensive coordinator who had no college experience, no defensive coordinator experience, no special teams experience, no head coaching experience, etc.

Ara had all of those in spades. Ara came to ND with a complete formulation of the offense, defense, special teams, practice schedules and rules, etc. - i.e. all that was needed to field a top flight team. He worked WITH the players. He did not DICTATE to them.

Because of his obvious skills and preparations, Ara was within 3 obviously biased penalties of winning a national championship in his 1st year at ND (1964). He was (as we all know) able to win 2 national championships and brought the ND football program back to national prominence.

Charlie has had experience only as an offensive coordinator, primarily under Bill Belichick, and was proclaimed an "offensive genius" in that position. He came to ND with an overly complicated offense, no defense, no special teams, no practice schedules and rules, etc. - he was not prepared to be a head coach. He DICTATED to the players. He did not work with them, with the exception of Brady Quinn, who he helped to be a passable quarterback.

Given the results of the past 5 years, I have serious doubts about the label "genius", especially this year where every team we have played has used a soft zone defense against us and Charlie has been unable to find a way to break it.

Also, Charlie has had a miserable record of hiring assistant coaches, his most recent failure being the hiring of John Tenuta and then creating a schism between the defensive front (coached by defensive coordinator Tenuta) and the defensive backs (coached by the co-defensive coordinator Corwin Brown). Powlus is another example.

He has resolved (it appears) one problem, the offensive line coach, by bringing in Frank Verducci to coach the OLine which is better this year.

Our defense (especially yesterday) looked like a Chinese fire drill. I'm surprised Navy didn't score less, just because they should have been falling down laughing.

The offense looked almost as inept as the defense yesterday. Clausen's absolutely stupid attempt to run in the TD could have cost him his career. I'm glad to see he was able to come back. However, once again, he was improperly coached about GETTING RID OF THE BALL IN THE END ZONE, to avoid the sack and the safety.

The only bright spot in this whole miserable 5 years has been the Staff's ability to recruit outstanding players with great potential.

It is unfortunate the Staff is incapable of coaching these players to enable them to play up to their full abilities and bring ND back to national prominence.

It's time for Fr. Jenkins and the rest of the ND Administration to watch the DVD "Echoes Awakened" and find a new FB coach, like Ara who can come to ND with a complete formulation of the offense, defense, special teams, practice schedules and rules, etc. - i.e. all that is needed to field a top flight team and return the Irish to National Prominence.

11/08/2009 09:27:00 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

Weis must go he scripts his plays and when they do not work as planned he can not adjust to the game. Plays to the other teams level a lot of the time. Temple beat Navy the coach for Temple made sound game decisions hence the outcome. You can count on at least 2 games a year where this will be the outcome. With him we will be an average team at best. Swarbick needs to give a call to the guy who is working Monday Night Football LETS START THE JON GRUDEN MOVEMENT!!

11/08/2009 09:36:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"We need the final piece on Defense and watch out top 25!"

If we left coaching decisions up to you Gerry Faust would be celebrating his 29th year as coach at ND. If ND is perpetually one player away, or three plays away or a year away then we have a serious problem.

According to the staff at NDNation before the season, the 2009 Irish have just as much talent as the 2008 Florida Gators based on recruiting rankings. That the results are disappointing speaks to the coaching at ND.

The only way I will support Weis is if ND dominates every remaining opponent on their schedule. Given their penchant to struggle against EVERYONE, I have a better chance of winning the lottery.

11/08/2009 09:42:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Two words: BRIAN KELLY.

11/08/2009 09:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ND should be ranked # 1. There are about 50 better teams but because we are ND we should be ranked # 1

11/08/2009 09:51:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The entire coaching staff is terrible.
They are incapable of making adjustments during a game. The offensive line is soft. They were driven backwards by undersized middies in every short-yardage situation.
The defense looks like a "chinese fire drill." The defensive linemen do not function as a unit; the linebackers haven't been taught how to shed a block and fill a hole( except freshman Manti Teo); and the cornerbacks are pacifists.

11/08/2009 09:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Being a'69 graduate and following ND Football very, very closely for over 50 years, I thought that this would be the year that we really turned things around and would again become a top 10 force in College football..the top-rated recruiting classes were becoming upper classmen; Charlie seemed to be learning from his earlier mistakes re everything from his coaching staff, delegation of authority to his attitude to the media and ND Fandom...

At my count, we currently have at least 10-15 players who will eventually be playing on Sundays but we just can't put it together. The defense has no clue and the offense rings up big yardage totals but fails to execute in the red zone and constantly shoots itself in the foot...In addition, our special teams have been mediocre to awful for several years...

At this point, it looks like will again lose 5 or more games this year...This is not acceptable...I hate to say it but big changes need to be made...the very least being the defensive coordinator...all the way to a complete turnover of the entire coaching staff...This will mean lots of defections from the current team and potential recruits but the current regime isn't working... I guess it is time to start over...yet again!!

11/08/2009 10:00:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm tired of hearing moronic ND fans saying this is the best we can do and we are middle of the pack and just can't compete with the big boys - give me a break. we have perennial top 10 recruiting classes and our schedule is usually ranked around 50th. a great coach will come here, take all the 4 and 5 star recruits we have right now and win at least 9 next year and 9+ every year. academics aren't the issue. It's clearly coaching. I really like Weis and I hope he gets another gig - he is better suited for the Pros.

11/08/2009 10:19:00 AM  
Anonymous James said...

This is in response to the post regarding our pro prospects: You say that we have at least 10-15 guys who will play in the pros. What games have you been watching? JC is obviously going to be a first round pick next spring (he is the best we have had since JT). MF will be a top pick as well and this will likely be next spring as well. KR will play because he can do it all as a tight end. This is it! None of our defensive guys could even start for Florida or Alabama (or maybe even Navy), so how can they make it to the pros?

We are not very talented and the talent we have is wasted by inept coaching.

When will you guys realize that we are not that good. I don't care about recruiting service evaluations as they are as troublesome as economic models predicting interest rates.

Go Irish!

11/08/2009 10:46:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is only one explanation for 450+ yards passing, but still losing vs. a team that lost to Temple the previous week. POOR COACHING. For Charlie to say, "It hurts, but I'm not going to let it change the way I coach" is a disgrace and an affront.

Charlie must go. Gruden, uh, no. Kelly, better.

11/08/2009 10:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What happened to Tate? Why does Jimmy only look to throw to Floyd when he's in the game? Clausen and Weis should both be held responsible for the lack of inclusion of Tate into the Gameplan. We couldn't throw long all day for the first time in weeks, gee, I wonder why, maybe it's because Jimmy is in love with throwing the ball to the tallest target he has at wideout. Golden goes and gets touchdown balls.

11/08/2009 11:02:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"John Vannie said...
There are still people out there who have not figured it out. I can't protect them any longer. I'm past the point of hoping for a turnaround. Those with a vested interest in ND football need to demand better from those charged with running the program."

Welcome to the club, John. I posted this comment a couple years ago: "Charlie Weis is the worst head coach in the history of Notre Dame football."

To expect that our football program will EVER get back to its former Tradition of Excellence under Weis is to expect a miracle transition. There is no magic candle at the Grotto.

The University of Notre Dame has changed.


11/08/2009 11:15:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reviewing various sites after yet another coaching loss indicates its about 30-40% keep Weiss if he can finish 8-4 or 9-3, 50%-60% fire him as 'enough is enough', and any statistical residual from those who don't like ND anyway.

I think the bellwether is that Mark May did not have to appear biased against ND in his analysis with Lou Holtz, he had all the ammunition he needed.

Keep Charlie? He is very good until the red zone, where he dips into his bag of tricks and stalls the offense, unless it is the jump ball fade route that every team practices defending. However, he is not really a head coach yet.

Biggest Problem? Tenuta. I regretted when they hired him, but anyone is better than Polian, whose family pedigree seems to be the basis for his work pedigree. I was dismayed when Tenuta became DC, as his blitz-happy defense focuses more on a big loss than a sustained defensive effort and ND is getting carved up. The defense appears to play pretty well in when not blitzing, but Tenuta can't control himself. I would have fired him today, as the ND defensive is talented enough to play much better. Harrison Smith does not even tackle, just lower his shoulder and "hits someone" as Tenuta preaches in practice.

OFF Line Coach and DEF line Coach. Wonderful. In another year or two they will make that those positions strengths of ND football. Corwin Brown, a decent secondary and good recruits. RB coach, very good and I think the benefits are yet to come in the next couple of years.

Weis? Fire Tenuta, find a top-notch DC and quit blitzing so much. Get rid of Polian unless you want to leave him as a recruiter. ND is not Weis' sandbox, but he has treated the football team as much.

Maybe its karma, as I think Weis is the perfect replacement in Cleveland and Brady Quinn would certainly welcome that. The pros don't need development the same way college students do and have the time to learn all the plays Weis needs to install in order to feel effective.

I don't believe for a second Saban would ever leave his job in Alabama, but I think if he is willing to get a top OC who runs a pro offense, he would be the ND coach for the next 15 years if he took the job.

11/08/2009 11:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brian Kelly should be the next coach of Notre Dame. He's Irish, he's built winners at Grand Valley State, Central Michigan and Cincinnati and he'd do the same thing at Notre Dame.

Sadly, it's not going to happen. Why? Several reasons. The first is money. Buying out Charlie is going to cost the University large coin and I don't see them wanting to bite the bullet. Second, Coach Weis is an outstanding recruiter. After the Willingham debacle, the school will be very reluctant to fire a great recruiter. Third, Notre is really not that bad. Sure, they lost to Navy, but it's hard to pin the loss on Coach Weis. Two chip shot FGs missed, Parris' fumble, Clausen's bonehead plays, like getting sacked in the end zone, ... these are really hard to pin on the coach. They're 6-3 and will likely finish 8-4. I just don't see school officials making a change after an 8-4 year.
I really don't.

Sad, but true.

11/08/2009 11:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to James..
Here is a list of our current roster of who will be playing in the pros..I am not saying they will all be stars but they will all be drafted...
Clausen, Tate, Floyd, Young, T Robinson, Rudolph, Teo, E Johnson,
K McCarthy, D Crist..

In addition, A Allen, T Riddick, Olsen, Fleming, R McNeil, D Walls, I Williams and Mike Ragone will also get attention...

All of the above have the ability but need to get properly coached up
to earn a living at the next level..

11/08/2009 11:50:00 AM  
Blogger Scranton Dave said...

I have stuck by Weis in the past but I cant do it anymore. This loss is embarrasing and inexcusible. To have the talent that we have and lose at home to a Navy team that lost to Temple last week is completely unacceptable. There are a ton of guys on this team that are going to be drafted and some will be high ( Clausen, Floyd, Tate, Rudolph) picks and we cant beat Navy at home? Vannie is right, Charlie has to go. I feel worse about it than Davie/Willingham cause Weis is a ND guy and they were not, but he has to go. Bring on Gruden

11/08/2009 12:39:00 PM  
Blogger TBell said...

When you lose twice in a row at home to Navy, you're not relevant in college football.

When the fullback from Navy runs through your defense, around your defense and away from your defense, you're not relevant in college football.

When you have the most sterile stadium in the country with 75,000 of the 80,000 indifferent to wins and loses, you're not relevant in college football.

When your coach is 700 lbs. you're not relevant in college football.

When Steve Levy of ESPN injects snide remarks during the highlights of your loss at home to Navy, you're not relevant in college football.

When the current coach of Northwestern is mentioned as possible replacement for your 700 lbs. coach, you're not relevant in college football.

When a 80 year old lady sitting in front of me says out loud, "Why don't one of the boys line up near the ball (meaning across the center at noseguard)?" you're not relevant in college football.

When the prevailing consensus is, "If we can hold UConn to under 34 points at our home stadium, we may have a shot to beat them" you're not relevant in college football.

When your head coach says, "I'm not going to change" at the press conference after his second home loss to Navy, you're not relevant in college football. (note: if Jack Swarbrick doesn't say to Charlie Weis this week, "Coach, I know you're not going to change but these players, this program and this university deserve better thus we need a change leading our football program..." then there is no point in even having a football program. I'm not kidding).

11/08/2009 01:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone who is less than seething about CW is a moron. The situation is very simple: we lose too much. There are only two groups of people involved in getting the team ready to play: (1) the players and (2) the coaches. The players are all HIGHLY recruited. They are highly regarded by every recruiting analyst in the country. On the other hand, CW's strongest credential is his success at New England. But, NEW ENGLAND WAS MORE SUCCESSFUL WITHOUT HIM! As for CW's recruiting, who cares! It doesn't take great personnel to get CW's results. Anyone can lose. It takes a special bread of asshole to take the talent that we have, and consistently lose to Navy. Can anyone look at CW and seriously think there is even a possibility that he is a leader or a motivator? At this point, if you are not certain that CW must be fired, then winning football games cannot possibly be your concern. He is the worst coach in ND history by several measures (blowout losses, home losses, winning percentage v. ranked opponents, home losses, upset losses...). It is unfortunate that the rhetoric about CW and his supporters has to be so caustic. But there are people out there that just don't get it; people who refuse to open their eyes. HE LOSES TOO MUCH. Bring on Brian Kelly, Chris Peterson, Gary Patterson, anyone. You could throw a dart anywhere and hit a better coach than CW. We need a college head coach with a track record of success. Doesn't that seem like a novel idea. Moreover, not to fire CW would be a disservice to the players. They work incredibly hard. They chose us over other schools presumably with the idea that they could be part of a winning organization. And they are not put in a position to achieve the results with which they were presumably tempted. Hats off to the Middies for playing disciplined, physical, enthusiastic football. They were flying around out there. They set a great example for us.

11/08/2009 01:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

CW has a chance to do something classy. Resign and turn down the buyout. He can admit that he has already been paid a lot of money and achieved almost nothing (I say almost because his recruiting is good, I will admit). Even if he doesn't want to admit defeat, there is no denying the environment has turned so negative that the program needs a change. If he is really as committed to ND football as he claims to be (rather than being committed to himself), he will resign.

Another group that has to admit defeat is anyone involved in the hiring of our last three coaches. Would it be too much to ask the Board of Trustees to assemble an independent committee of people that know something about college football to perform the next search. I'd settle for avoiding a public embarrassment.

11/08/2009 01:49:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should never take joy in anyone getting fired, especially an ND grad (who I believe badly wants to win) who has a family, but there is no concieveable way Weis can keep his job. He still has zero signature wins, cannot beat teams with winning records to save his life, and consistently makes average opponents look like world beaters. If that wasn't enough, he is now losing to service academies CONSISTENTLY at home. The guy isn't a head coach. At least not in college. I would be fine with him staying on as offensive coordinator, but there is no way he would swallow his pride enough to agree to that. Brian Kelly has done great things with Cincy, but he isn't the answer either. He hasn't proven enough. We need a proven motivator in here. Jon Gruden would be perfect, the guy is a workaholic with an red a** attitude. Whether he would come or not, I don't know. If not, Urb could get the job done also, we should all root for Florida to win it all again so he feels like he has nothing left to prove. On a side note, the offensive and defensive lines should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. They were blown off the ball by guys on the other side that were half their size. Weis can't be blamed for that. Nor can he be blamed for inability to convert a 30 yard FG. Jon Tenuta should also be fired for yesterday alone. Navy runs 10 plays, tops. Still the Irish had no answers until it was too late. Even if we win out, it doesn't make up for a wasted season. Its time to start demanding more.

11/08/2009 01:56:00 PM  
Blogger Christopher said...

Do the players view their ND career as pre-season NFL games? What I’m getting at is the tendency for ND to play up or down to the level of its competition, which I have observed for years. I realized this may be similar to the tendency of NFL players to not give 100% effort in pre-season games—it’s not worth the risk to their bodies.

It seems clear that Weis uses his NFL history and NFL contact list to support his recruiting efforts. ND is attracting players that are hoping for a big NFL contract. Why should these players risk their future NFL careers by putting full effort into every game they play at ND?

11/08/2009 02:04:00 PM  
Anonymous DC Irish '69 said...

RyGuy said it all. Not having a team ready to play is the Coach's fault and Charlie is an expert at that. If Swarbrick can't see that it's because he's closed his eyes. I hope we don't have to have a donation boycott to get this done (I've been Sorin for many years). Who ever would've thought that we have to drop Navy from the schedule because they're too tough (I know we won't)? Western Michigan scares me for a team that won't have Jimmy or Golden next year -- 2010 is looking like 4-8 if we get lucky. But no Gruden -- we don't need another ex-pro coach.

11/08/2009 02:39:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's all about inspirational leadership. When Lou Holtz was at the helm, who led the team running out of the tunnel and on to the field? That's the difference between a manager and a leader. An entire generation will now have grown up not recognizing Notre Dame as a perennial power house in college football. College football needs Notre Dame and the service academies to excel as shining examples of true student-athletes. Navy answered the call yesterday. Congratulations to them on a stellar and hard-fought performance. Motivation, team play, and leadership won the day for them. I am a retired Navy pilot who didn't go to the USNA or Notre Dame....but my heart will always be with the Fighting Irish. If you want a real change, you have to make a real change...starting at the helm.

11/08/2009 02:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our loss to Navy yesterday was a statement on so many levels about this football program. Navy played with three times the heart and emotion the ND players did. They deserved to win that game. The countless penalties that we endured are a direct result of a lack of discipline..that is coaching! Our inablitiy to adapt and change when needed..coaching! Not kicking field goals when we need the points...coaching! There is no reason what so ever that this team should not be a top ten team with the amount of talent they have.

11/08/2009 03:23:00 PM  
Anonymous FLRyan said...

I was walking down the beach Saturday morning before the game, and lo and behold I run into Charlie's decided schematic advantage. So I say "hey, DSA, why aren't you in South Bend, you have a game today." And DSA says, "I bought a condo down in Sarasota a few years back with all the loot from my contract. I only go back up there for the summer. It's really nice down here this time of year. Did I tell you that Rich Rodriguez' extra practice hours bought the unit next to mine? I'm so excited that we will be neighbors."

11/08/2009 03:48:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Brian Kelly has done great things with Cincy, but he isn't the answer either. He hasn't proven enough."

"Bring on Brian Kelly, Chris Peterson, ... anyone."

Brian Kelly has built three programs from ashes. Three!!!
His last two recruiting classes were ranked 60th and 44th and he's about to have his third 10-win season in a row!!! His first string QB, Tony Pike, who is projected as a mid- to late 1st round pick goes down and his back up, Collaros, who had never started a college game, looks better than any Heisman hopeful except Florida's QB. Pike may not win his job back.

Wake up people, this guy can coach, he's inspirational, passionate, and you know what? He's frickin' humble unlike the outgoing ND coach.

11/08/2009 05:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's obvious to me as I read all these opinions is that none of you have ever played or coached at a high level. What amazes me more is that none of you have ever held skilled, management positions. This is evident by your lack of understanding of how things work. Opinions are like a-holes -- everyone's got one. Doesn't mean it's right. Doesn't mean they're well-informed. Well considered. Doesn't mean they're not biased. Just because the 'net allows you a broad voice, doesn't mean that you have any power. Don't for a second believe you're anything but a lone discontent. Sure there may be many lone discontents to join you -- misery likes company, of course -- but you're simply a child crying because he hasn't gotten his way. Grow up. Or return your ND degree. Those that love our Lady REGARDLESS of football outcomes consider you a disgrace.

11/08/2009 06:50:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe how many of you band wagon fans are jumping ship. Charlie and the program needs you more than ever and all you guys can clamor is how we need a new coach. I will support this team 110% with or without you guys.

Charlie is still my coach. Anyone can lose a close game ever now and again. This defense is still young, give it time to mature. With Jimmie, Golden, and the OL back next year, NC here we come.

11/08/2009 07:15:00 PM  
Blogger KMan said...

As I wrote in my September 15th blog post (www.thekmanblog.blogspot.com), Charlie Weis is not a strategic thinking head coach. He is a pass happy offensive coordinator, and his reign as head coach must come to an end. 0-5 vs. USC lifetime. 1-2 vs. NAVY in the last 3 seasons. He wrote the book entitled "No Excuses," and was the first to point out that the ND Football program was not good enough when he inherited it. Now, he needs to look in the mirror, and realize he is what he is, and that a pass happy offensive coordinator is not good enough to be Notre Dame's head coach.

11/08/2009 07:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Notre Dame has had 15 head coaches from 1918 to 2009. Of those 15 only 5 coaches Rockne Leahy Parsegian Devine Holtz are famous. Anderson Layden McKeever Devore Brennan Kuharic Faust Davie Willingham Weis I believe tried there best. Coaching College Ahtletes is a gift. Notre Dame football players are definetly the best in the Nation. The coachs job is to take the best and make them to even better as a team. I will never forget the TV picture of Lou Holtz standing at the opening of the tunnell at ND with the whole team behind him and with a wag of his finger they all trotted behind him on the field and said we got a winner coach and a winning team..find that man.

11/08/2009 07:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Lazlo said...

Go give Chip or Brian Kelley, Urban or Stoops, or whomever a signing bonus of $15 million. This will show the nation that ND is serious about fielding a football team. The coaches since Holtz left have left the program hanging by a thread in the realm of being relevent across HS football players.

Give the new coach two players per year that wouldn't otherwise get admitted to the University.

Give the players coaches that can't teach fundamentals of blocking, tackling and discipline.

See how easy it is to fix the problem?

11/08/2009 09:09:00 PM  
Blogger The Fighting Polak said...

Even if we win out, I still think he needs to go. This year should have been a 1-loss year, not a 3-loss year. I mean, all you have to do is beat the people that we should beat, plus either USC or Pitt. As it is, I think there's a good chance that we could lose out.

Fire Weis, Fire Tenuta, Go Irish!

11/09/2009 07:39:00 AM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Looks like it might be time to release some of those domain names...

11/09/2009 08:07:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

TCU is fourth in the BCS standings, as of this morning. TCU? And we can't even hold their jock strap!

11/09/2009 08:08:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yikes...I read this and I just shake my head. I was born and raised in NW Indiana. Notre Dame did not recruit me. I was captain of my high school team. ND did not recruit me. I ran a 4.5 40 yard dash. ND did not recruit me. I had a 36 inch vertical leap. ND did not recruit me. I was recruited by 40 schools, including Purdue, Wisconsin, Denny Green at Northwestern, Indiana, Michigan State and Illinois. ND did not recruit me. And I almost went to Navy just so that I could play AGAINST ND becuase I loved them so much. But I knew we would NEVER WIN! :-) I LOVE ND FOOTBALL. I drag myself every year to 3 home games. I took my 7 year old son to the USC game. Why is it that we can never win the big game but we are always the victims of others' upsets? Coaching...coaching...coaching...the glory is fading...we are a laughing stock...BSC stands for Bring Someone to Coach...we are constantly underprepared...constantly outschemed...constantly coming up short...with talent like we have, this is embarrasing...Weis and team must go...it's just that simple...Guys, BOISE STATE is undefeated....let's be real about this...

11/09/2009 09:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Irish fans, take heart. Navy has saved ND from yet another embarrassing BCS blowout.

11/09/2009 10:13:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm hearing on the blogs that Brian Kelly's three favorite cities in no particular order are:

1. South Bend
2. South Bend
3. South Bend

Followed closely by:

4. South Bend
5. South Bend
6. South Bend

11/09/2009 10:21:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I suppose it was inevitable, but add dissension on the team to the reasons Weis must go ... NOW!!!


11/09/2009 10:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Go Navy!

11/09/2009 11:12:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm ready for ND to fire Weis. Weis has no clue on how to motivate his players and get the most out of them. No idea on how to get them to leave it all on the field and play with the toughness and passion that is required to compete at the elite level in college football. Weis is a great O-Coordinator but deep down he is just not a manager of people. Some people are meant to lead (Bill Belichik) and some are meant to follow (Weis). Look where Alabama is now with the hiring of NIck Saban! Top program for the last two years when they weren't relevant in the SEC for many years. As far as those who make an arguement for Weis that he is a great recruiter, give me a break. The name Notre Dame gets any coach above average talent. Year in and year out our talent is probably better than 85% of all other Division I FBS programs. I'll give him credit for Clausen and Teo but it took Jimmy three years to develop into a great quarterback and Teo isn't exactly Ray Lewis yet. Everybody else he has recruited would of gone to Notre Dame regardless if Charlie was the coach or Joe The Plumber. I've supported Weis throughout his whole tenure but enough is enough. I can't anymore. There is nothing to defend. Period.

11/09/2009 11:33:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I second the nomination of Brian Kelly.

11/09/2009 12:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

CW nees to go. ND should NEVER lose to navy...EVER. I give navy all the credit, they outplayed us. but we are ND, and how many ND coaches have lost to navy...TWICE? its time to get a new guy, I backed charlie up untill saturday, we have WAYYYY too much talent to be only 6-3 right now. We need someone who can light a fire under his players butts.

11/09/2009 12:31:00 PM  
Blogger IRISH STING said...

IRISH STING SAYS: "But your simply a child crying because he hasn't gotten his way. Those who love Our Lady Regardless of football outcomes consider you a disgrace." Hummmm! Seems we have here someone who is an elitist and believes in only two parts of a human being and forgets the third. One thing I was taught at Our Lady was that we were a human consisting of mind, body and soul and it was the University goal of developing all three. Winning football is the ultimate in developing decision making, sound body, and a spirit to win no matter what the odds. I may be simple but my nose is not stuck high in the sky with my elitist outlook on life. Our Lady loves us all, even you.

As for Charley who may lose the last three games, do us all a favor with your love of Notre Dame and step aside for someone who can develope the mind, body and soul of a team to win it all, not John Gruden but a proven college coach Brian Kelly. See how he does against Pitt. and Conn. as compared to Charley.

11/09/2009 12:53:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember seeing Jerry Faust in the Crypt for mass every morning on my way to Corby for work. He was a faithful man, a great man, a Notre Dame man. But Jerry couldn't coach, and I also remember when they announced his resignation over the PA in North Dining Hall, and the students cheered. Moral was as low then as it is now, and all the glory seemed as unreachable--the last NC was nearly a decade earlier and our humilation was great.

Then came Holtz, and the stories about the early morning practices, him slapping the player's feet off the desk as he talked to them and chewed them out for how they played Miami. He had enough respect for them not to whine about the 'Canes running up the score, make excuses for mediocrity, or settle for the consolation prize. He came into a sitatuion that was as loaded with refrains of "ND sucks; it's a has-been program; it'll never return to glory" as this one has. I remember.

C'mon, Charlie, show some of that class we hear so much about and step aside so the program you love can be what it should be. You tired, sincerely, we don't doubt it. But courage and fibre often has as much to do with seeing when we must give up as it does with the resolve to never give up.

11/09/2009 01:34:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Teams like Navy and Boston College clearly do not bring in the recruiting hauls that Notre Dame does, yet their defenses are far superior to Notre Dame's defense. Why are these teams able to make stops, generate turnovers, and disrupt good offensive units? It's because they are well coached and displined. How many times have we seen ND players out of position and let opposing receivers get behind the defense? It's one thing to let it happen once or twice, but that's not the case here. It happens repeatedly. Where's the learning? Where are the adjustments? Where's the progression from mediocre to solid fundamentals? Where are the coaches?

11/09/2009 01:54:00 PM  
Blogger IT-recruiter said...

It really boils down to this, if I have better talent on my sideline than you do, I should win most of the time. (Especially at home). If my talent is far superior to yours, I should kick your butt.
I am tired of Notre Dame losing or barley squeaking by inferior talented teams.
Hey, maybe we can play Hawaii again in a bowl game and then the current coaching staff can feel good about themselves until the 2010 season starts.

11/09/2009 04:15:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

CW is not now, nor will he ever be a leader of men. CW had the answers to the test in NE. If Charley had played, or understood player's mentalities, he would never make players go listen to another school's fight song after they just whipped you on your home field. The team came out inexplicably flat against Navy. That goes right to the top. Anybody see Saban grab Julious Jones on the sideline Saturday and let him know how he felt about players dropping passes? Jones responded by scoring a touchdown. Can you ever envision Weis doing something reotely similar? Can you ever see Les Miles saying, "c'mon boys over to the Alabama side, we're going to sing roll Tide"?

11/09/2009 05:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Weis will make $4.2 million this year. His team is unranked and will reamin unranked. Brian Kelly will make $1.2 million this year. His team is ranked no. 5. Weis has never had an ND team finish in the top 10, yet he has been paid more money than anyone in college football in the past 5 years. Does this situation fit the classic definition of insanity?

11/09/2009 06:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope most of you realize that he signed to a 10 year contract of which he still has 4 or 5 seasons left -- and we don't even know if there was a performance clause in his contract. The way I figure they would need to fork out $20 million to buy him out of that contract. Anybody willing to donate the money?

11/09/2009 08:20:00 PM  
Blogger Mike Coffey said...

There were people willing to donate it last time, so I don't think that'll be a problem.

11/09/2009 08:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's time...time to go talk to Brian Kelly.

11/09/2009 09:05:00 PM  
Anonymous OC Irish said...

But Weis is an ND guy - he "gets" it! Surely he'll prove it by walking away from that bundle of unearned cash. In Weis we trust, right?

11/09/2009 09:54:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most of you people are still living in the past if you think Navy is not a very good football team. They aren't nearly as bad as they were six years ago. Heck, ND barely beat them by 3 and 7 pts a few years ago. The streak could have very well been stopped a few years ago. They beat a very good Wake Forest team last year and finished 8-5. Over the past six years they have gone 8-5, 10-2, 8-4, 9-4, 8-5, and 8-5,going to six straight bowl games. They aren't as bad as everyone here thinks they are.

11/09/2009 10:47:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps Charlie has an unconscious, secret wish to be fired. It would be very difficult for Charlie to focus with all of the negative comments hurled at him. I'd put some responsibility on the admin because they were the one who went after Charlie after being snubbed by Meyer. Maybe Charlie has always been Charlie; that's all he got. He was good with 3 rings with the Pats, but that was it. The admin wasn't aware of that.

11/10/2009 11:39:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't the way to beat the option is to go man to man on the QB and RB? ND never seems to adjust in the second half. For any team to run against ND the way Navy did is ridiculous. ND was totally unprepared for the Navy offense, and that's poor coaching.

Good bye Charlie. Close the door behind you.

11/11/2009 03:37:00 PM  

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