Notre Dame Absolutely Obliterates Navy, Achieves Statistical Pile On

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For the first time since 1973 (a run of 273 straight games) Notre Dame did not sell out a home football game. Perhaps it’s coincidentally fitting then that the game which finally ended the streak, lacked entertainment value, as Notre Dame dominated so thoroughly right out of the gate, and never looked back.

“Only” (and we really mean the air quotes here) 74,080 showed up at Notre Dame Stadium today for the Fighting Irish 52-20 rout of the Navy academy, but one of those 74K (77,622 constitutes a sellout) and change was literally a rock star- Jon Bon Jovi. Marching band played “It’s My Life” while the scoreboard saluted him.

bon-jovi

He saw his beloved Irish jump on Navy early, taking a 14-0 lead at the end of the first quarter, and a 38-3 lead into the halftime locker room. The best college football betting sites certainly did not foresee an outcome like this, as Navy came into the game ranked #21 and underdogs by only a touchdown at most places. The spread had been 11 earlier in the week, but dropped to just seven as the game approached.

For Navy this game is essentially their Super Bowl every year, so it’s surprising how out-performed the Midshipmen were. They looked like, well how every NFL team not named the New England Patriots looks to all the super bowl sportsbooks. They took extremely poor care of the football, fumbling four times and losing all of those fumbles. All of those mistakes were extremely costly, as the ND defense shut down their triple option, and the Fighting Irish air attack took flight. At the break, ND was winning the yardage battle 300-151, 209 in 20 in passing.

South Bend International Airport (SBN) had extremely crowded air space today, thanks to Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book. Just 25 minutes in, Book had a passer rating of 415! He started out 8-9 passing for 193 yards and four touchdown TD passes.

We’re starting to roll, and we’re feeling really confident as an offense right now,” Book said after the game.

Book finished 14-20 for 284 yards and five TDs, after just two and half quarters of play. With the Irish up so big early on, he was pulled and garbage time began early in the third quarter.

Wide receiver Chase Claypool had a day for the ages. He had seven grabs for 117 yards, four of which went for touchdowns. He joins Maurice Stovall, as the only ND wide receivers to have four touchdowns in a single game.

“He’s having an awesome year,” Book of Claypool.

“It’s starting to show on Saturdays, all the work he’s doing on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. He’s someone all the receivers look to.”

Claypool now has 900 November receiving yards, as he’s somebody who truly excels down the stretch in crunch time, when battling the weather elements can also be a challenge.

“The chemistry with Ian Book has definitely helped a lot,” said the British Columbia native of his roommate on road trips.

“Getting comfortable with the game plan helps. I’m happy that I’m able to make some plays for him, and building that trust even more.”

One of the most commonly used buzz words/terms in football is “50/50 balls,” but Claypool has made it so throwing it up to him is more like an 80/20 or 90/10 kind of proposition.

“He can catch a ball on the sideline, a fade, a vertical route in the seam. He virtually has all the weapons,” said Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly of Claypool

“Last year was a maturation process for him…Last year he was finding himself as a receiver.”

Notre Dame now moves to 8-2 on the season, with games versus Boston College and at Stanford remaining.

brian kelly notre dame

Kelly said he foresaw this rout coming before kickoff. “I could tell in pregame that Navy was in trouble, they really were,” he said.

He also said the humbling at Michigan in the middle of the season was a major learning experience for his team. They learned that as hard as you work in practice, you need to also flip the switch on game day.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, the author of “No,  I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

You can follow Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com on Twitter here and his cat on Instagram at this link.

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