October 4, 2014 - Weathering the Storm to Survive


On a cold, windy, and rainy day that saw eleven of the top twenty ranked teams lose, Notre Dame came back in the final minutes to defeat #14 Stanford 17-14 and remain undefeated on the season. The #2, 3, 4, 6, and 8 teams all lost. The last time four of the top six teams lost in the same weekend was 1990 (#2 ND defeated Navy to move up to #1).

As kickoff approached, the temperature was 41 degrees but a 15 MPH windchill combined with a steady rain made it feel more like 33. The game started off with both teams giving the ball back frequently. Stanford's first three possessions were two three-and-outs and an interception by Cole Luke. ND meanwhile, turned it over on downs, punted, and then on the first play after Luke's interception Golson fumbled the ball at the ND 13. As noted during the Syracuse review, Stanford made ND pay by scoring a touchdown two plays later.

As the second quarter started, ND reeled off to big plays of 21 yards and 26 yards, plus a personal foul on Stanford to put ND at the Stanford 11 yard line. However, Golson would try and force a pass on 3rd down and be intercepted at the two yard line. His second redzone turnover in the last two games. The defense immediately forced a punt and ND got into field goal range. Brindza lined up for a 41yd attempt, but a bad snap/hold results in the kick going wide right. Stanford would then attempt a 42yd FG but a high snap resulted in no attempt. ND's next possession, Golson would keep the ball and run for a 33 yard gain. Two plays later, Golson found Chris Brown on a crossing route for a 17 yard touchdown to tie the game. With the two turnovers hurting ND, the score was tied 7-7 at half.

The third quarter was very similar to how the game started. ND had the ball three times and punted every time. Stanford also had the ball three times and punted twice then ended with an interception. Drue Tranquill blocked Stanford's first punt (the first blocked punt by ND since Utah 2010 - which was then returned for a touchdown). ND could not capitalize off the blocked punt.

The first play of the fourth quarter found Cole Luke intercepting his second pass of the game (the last player to have two INTs in the same game? Manti T'eo verse Michigan 2012). ND would get into the redzone down to the 10 yard line but be forced to try a field goal. A second bad hold by Hunter Smith saw a low kick that was returned by Stanford 39 yards. The defense again immediately forced a punt. ND would put together another drive and get to the Stanford 28. For the third time, Kyle Brindza lined up for a field goal attempt, this time from 45 yards out. And then Brian Kelly had a genius idea:

We've got to catch the snap. We've got to understand that we've got to pace that ball back there a little bit. But we found a revolutionary idea that will probably be now the biggest thing in college football. We're going to put gloves on the holder and that seemed to be the way to accomplish greatness in this game. Unbelievable. I've been in this thing for 25 years and we're coming up with new things every day. I said how about we try gloves on the holder, has anybody figured that one out?

It worked and Brindza put the Irish ahead 10-7 with his 51st career made field goal. With the make, he ties John Carney (1984-86) for most field goals made, both with a 51 makes in 69 attempts.

Ty Montgomery then got his only big play of the game with a 42 yard kickoff return. During the drive, Stanford converted a 3rd-and-8 and a 3rd-and-11 to cap off a 58 yard touchdown drive and take the lead 14-10. ND got the ball at the 35 with 3:01 left in the game. Stanford gave up the passes underneath and ND methodically moved into the redzone. After a designed QB draw was neutralized when the OLine was blocked into the running lane, ND had one last chance on 4th-and-11. Golson would look right, then moved left and found Ben Koyack wide open in a broken coverage. Koyack was standing motionless waiting for the ball to find him in the endzone. With 1:01 to go in the game, ND now led 17-14.

The ensuing kickoff would be a touchback, which the Notre Dame Drum Major caught.

Stanford would try to come back, but on their final play Schumate would sack the quarterback and the intentional grounding call resulted in a 10 second runoff on the clock and ended the game.

Notre Dame would improve to 5-0 for the 39th time in their history and record their first comeback win within the final 1:01 since UCLA 2006.

               1  2  3  4   F
#14 Stanford   7  0  0  7  14
# 9 Notre Dame 0  7  0 10  17

Quick Hits

  • Brian Kellyís teams are 10-1 (0.909) when ranked in the Top 10.
  • The defense held Stanford to three yards per play, Stanfordís lowest offensive average since 2006. Against USC and Washington, Stanford was 1-14 in 3rd and 5+ situations, today they were 2-13. Stanfordís defense had given up four plays longer than twenty yards through four games, Notre Dame had five such plays today.
  • Updated all-time wins list:
    1. 911 - Michigan
    2. 879 - Notre Dame
    3. 877 - Texas
    4. 869 - Nebraska
  • Update on all-time winning %:
    1. 0.7341 - Notre Dame (879-305-42)
    2. 0.7309 - Michigan (911-324-36)
  • Golson's Stats Through 5 games:
    Rice:   14/ 22  295yds   2 TD 0 INT / 12 rushes  41yds 3 TD 0 Fum
    UM:     23/ 34  226yds   3 TD 0 INT /  3 rushes -14yds 0 TD 0 Fum
    Purdue: 25/ 40  259yds   2 TD 0 INT / 14 rushes  56yds 1 TD 0 Fum
    Syr:    32/ 39  362yds   4 TD 2 INT / 10 rushes  21yds 0 TD 2 Fum
    Stan:   20/ 43  241yds   2 TD 1 INT /  7 rushes  34yds 0 TD 1 Fum
    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    Total: 114/178 1383yds  13 TD 3 INT / 46 rushes 117yds 4 TD 3 Fum
    



Keywords: football, stanford, cole luke, everett golson, kyle brindza, chris brown, drue tranquill, utah, manti teo, michigan, hunter smith, brian kelly, john carneey, ben koyack, ucla

Posted On: 2014-10-08 00:15:02 by IrishTrpt07

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