Too Early 2013 Notre Dame Football Season Preview

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It wouldn’t be Notre Dame football without  a little off-the-field drama. Especially at the quarterback position. And with starting quarterback Everett Golson kicked out of school due to academic issues Memorial Day weekend, ND football saw as much drama as an episode of Friday Night Lights.

Between Gunner Kiel flip-flopping more than Mitt Romney and John Kerry combined, Tommy Rees and his underage drinking arrest, and all the stuff Jimmy Claussen did…the leading men in the premier show that is Notre Dame football has provided boatloads of off-the-field material to write about these past five years.

Interesting number that 5.

Not one, but two college football players who wore it for ND last year attracted some unwanted publicity. But enough with that stuff, we’re here to move on and talk college football, Notre Dame football.

Save the drama for yo mama.


Notre Dame football reasons to get EXCITED! ALL CAPS! The national title game is over. Actually, that game effectively ended with 14:59 left in the 1st quarter. Alabama taught us that night how the SEC doesn’t just play another sport than the rest of college football; it moves in a bigger and faster universe. But hey, those states down there ought to have something in their life! Would you want to live in half of those places where the SEC teams are?

Anyways, the Fighting Irish have zero SEC teams on the schedule this season.

You remember that the defense didn’t give up a rushing touchdown…well….ever. Not until well into the season.

And then T.J. Yeldon and Eddie Lacy had at them. Before Eddie Lacy got really fat, or didn’t get fat, or he’s fine now…we don’t know. He plays in Wisconsin now so he will inevitably get fat someday. Anyways, Notre Dame football didn’t reach the pinnacle of college football until they got elite defensive linemen again. You know, the NFL quality D Linemen. In my opinion that’s as an important position as any in college football. It’s what the quarterback is to the NFL. Look at all the elite programs- ROBUST amounts of NFL Draft picks within the defensive line.

This group in South Bend is special. Stephon Tuitt and Louis Nix III, or Irish Chocolate, are headed to the first round of the draft next May.

Imagine how DOMINANT this group would be if they still had Aaron Lynch. The defense returns eight starters, with the linebacking corps being the weakest of the bunch. Although it too has much depth and experience.


And I love this secondary. Lo Wood is back. Bennett Jackson and KeiVare Russell are young upstarts. Max Redfield is five star. It’s too bad Bob Diaco can’t clone himself to also coordinate the offense too. He does really good work.

Best of all, you won’t have to listen to Manti Te’o give interviews anymore! I would rather clean the grime in my bathroom tub or spend an entire day doing administrative chores than listen/watch #5 speak in public. He’s about as painful as Bo Pelini or Lovie Smith or Cody Zeller.

Notre Dame football reasons to be worried :(  Tommy Rees is your starting QB again. That’s a problem. The entitled Lake Forest kid is a turnover machine on the football field. George Atkinson III is now your primary ball carrier. Notre Dame football fans shouldn’t feel all that great about that. He’s got speed and talent, but he can be as much of a misadventure as Rees sometimes. And the OL is breaking in a couple new starters.

This team won a lot of awfully close games last year; so their margins are razor thin. The margin or error will be extremely small again this fall. They’ll need to have another +8 in the turnover margin or something better to win 10+ games again. Remember, they know how to win those close games too.

Notre Dame football key games: the fun starts in week two versus  Michigan– especially since this series won’t be renewed for awhile. It’s Notre Dame football! EVERY game is a big game. But UM, Michigan State, at Stanford, USC, and Oklahoma are bigger than the others. They’re not going 12-0 again, they’re just not. But they should win 10 games at least.

Notre Dame football bottom line: With Everett Golson I would rank Notre Dame football in the 6 to 9 overall range nationally. Now without him, I’d be hesitant to even say top 15. I guess top 20. Tommy Rees? Please! He’s the macaroni without the cheese.


the 2013 College Football rankings 1-51

Big Ten Season Previews (and other teams of interest now too):



Ohio State




Michigan State









Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports, a Fox Sports affiliate. He is also an analyst for 95.7 The Fan, and writes on Chicago sports media for Chicago Now. President Obama follows his Twitter account (@PaulMBanks)

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