several differences ND defense adjusted to a four man line. By having 2 tackles inside thye were able to control the fullback dive. The tackles clogged the middle and kept the inside backers free ro roam. They had Brian Smitha s one inside backer, more speed, put defensive end Ethan Johnson as a tackle, again more speed, put outside linebacker darius Fleming as a down end, more speed. They played a 4 - 2 - 5. They used 5 d backs. More speed for the option. Harrison smith palyed center safety. Blanton and Slaughter played outside near the line primarily in run support almost making the formation look like a 4-4 or a 6- 2. Walls and Gray played back. They also switched assigments periodiclly and had D-ends, More and Fleming slant towards fullback dive with inside linebackers scraping off to outside.
Good points Idlgoirish, and worked well except on the first series when we could not contain.Mike and Ed, I liked the green jerseys and thought they worked well for that game. You could even tell from the TV that the atmosphere around the stadium was very electric. They still can be used as a surprise for big games without games like the Army game detracting from that, but only focusing on the 1977 USC game ignores the tradition that Leahy built wearing green regularly. I saw wearing green for this game as a salute to that era, especially with it being Army and ND in Yankee stadium, without the detraction for use in future games for motivation. Now, I totally disagreed with the green jersey on two occasions though: one being Willingham bringing them out unnanounced against an underdog BC team when we were 8-0 (I was at that game and remember thinking what in the world is Willingham doing - this is not good). It did more to fire up BC than ND. I also thought it was a very poor decision in 2007. I know the biggest part of it in 2007 was as a marketing ploy to try to sell jerseys and to get people to watch a horrible ND team on TV, but that was a game that was evident ND was going to get killed in going into and I don't think Ironman outfits would have changed that, let alone green jerseys. So, if they keep it to wearing them unannounced on big games (especially when we are an underdog with some chance to succeed) and for historic recognition like the Army game (when we have decent chance of prevailing), I like them.
Great Podcast. Kelly coached the coaches, which Kelly admitted is one thing he learned this season. Kelly's press conference today was most enlightening. In not so many words, Kelly bascially said he has learned to coach ND this year. He compared his early games to golf and at first going to the black tees and after 9 holes then going to the white tees. The Army game I believe showed that ND has the right head coach that is why the Army game was huge. Kelly admitted he has/had to evaluate his own performance, which he did. Being on the west coast I watch all the USC games. In at least ten years I have never seen a worse performance by USC than last week. I think everything is looking very good for old ND.
I'm like Ed a lifelong Red Sox fan. I'm a traditionalist when it comes to stadiums, and I love the retro feel at Fenway and ND stadium. I went to Yankee stadium with a visceral hatred of the Yankees, not knowing what to expect. I was blown away by how nice that place is. It is a first class facility with all the trappings of a new stadium while preserving the tradition and history of the hated Yankees. I actually enjoyed the Jumbotron! It made me start to think crazy thoughts like could/should Notre Dame reconstruct our stadium? A bigger better louder ND stadium might not be so bad...