Thursday, January 31, 2008
Harangody made two clutch free throws to tie the game with 18 seconds to go; the fans would have held their breath for the Friar's last possession if they weren't screaming. Focused on not allowing Providence their last shot, Jackson quickly stole the ball and heaved up a desperation shot (which almost went in) to push the game into overtime. In the extra period, Jackson assisted Notre Dame's first four field goals and proceeded to score the next five points, which included sinking 3 out of 4 free throws to give his team a 6 point lead.
Jackson, who also had a nice steal in overtime, seemed to finally get some of his swagger back after the contest. Only a 45% free throw shooter for the season, it was comforting for everyone when his shots began to fall at the end of the night. To say that Tory had a better free throw shooting night than Providence center Ray Hall, however, might be one of the biggest understatements of the century. Hall missed on his third free throw after being thrown off by some look-related-insults from the student section and was so frustrated that he air-balled his next attempt. After that, a merciless chorus of "Airrr Ballll" chants was heard every time he went to the line; Hall missed his next six attempts (including one that could have been a Friar game winner) as he worked his way to 2 of 10 on the day. Sticks and stones, Ray...
The Irish are now alone in second place in the Big East with a 5-2 record; only the Hoyas of Georgetown (7-1) are ahead. Black out night against DePaul on Saturday looks like its gonna be fun. Go Irish!
Saturday, January 26, 2008
The game started off fairly sloppily; Nova players especially seemed to have trouble handling the ball as they threw it away several times in the first half, and the Irish capitalized, jumping out to a quick lead that they held for almost the entire contest. K-Mac (30 pts) was soaking wet, at times pulling up 2 feet outside of the NBA 3-point line to stroke down 3's, and it seemed like all of Harangody's (25 pts 10 boards) points came from converting his own 3-point plays.
Mike Brey decided to start Zach Hillesland instead of Ryan Ayers, and it brought out the best in both of them. Ayers had 10 points and 5 rebounds; Hillesland only had 2 points, but they came on a fantastic putback dunk. Peoples also contributed, adding 2 points and playing some good defense. Brey finally got Nash into a Big East game, but it was only for 3 seconds at the end of the first half.
As the game winded down to the last 3 minutes and the Irish began to run the clock, things began to get sloppy, and Notre Dame surrendered some easy points and had some ugly turnovers that shouldn't have happened. However, the bottom line is that previously 18th ranked Villanova was handed its second Big East loss of the week while ND moved to 4-2 in conference play, putting them in a tie for second place.
Hat's off to the Irish, and hopefully they can continue to have good sex in the Big East.
Video compliments of withleather.com
Friday, January 25, 2008
Best MSM Blog: Michael Rothstein of Irish Insights gets my vote for the best "official journalist" writing for his timely and accurate reporting.
Funniest Blog: The House Rock Built, puts up quality posts from the most recent All-Hairmerican team to quality excuses for infrequent posting, this site usually gives me a good chuckle.
Keith Jackson Award: Subway Domer scores some points here for the blog that can turn out a few devastatingly funny phrases while simultaneously writing compelling posts. This award isn't for copy editing; "it's an award for kickin' prose."
Brady Quinn Award: Rakes of Mallow earns this award for best looking site just because it breaks up the repetitive format of all the blogspot sites I visit, although after Laws gets his site running, I could see it performing well in this category.
Best New Blog: Wake Up The Echoes provides great recruiting coverage and campus insight - a fitting choice for the blog created since the end of last year's national championship.
The Old Faithful Award: Irish Roundup gets my vote for this one. It's supposed to be for the best recurring feature of the year; I initially thought it read recruiting (which IR would most def win for its Friday Night Lights posts), but hell, they write so well I had to nominate them for something.
There was also this other Notre Dame blog called The Blue Gray Sky, which earned multiple awards to the point that I should list them off all at once:
The Dr. Z Award for best statistical manipulation and analysis.
That's it for today Nasties crew. If you would like to vote yourself for some of these awards, give it a shot yourself by clicking here. Have a good weekend and Go Irish!
Thursday, January 24, 2008
On the hardwood, Mike Brey has said that he is considering mixing up the lineup for the upcoming Villanova game. I don't think he means benching McAlarney or Bam Bam, but I wouldn't be surprised if Jackson and Ayers began playing a little less to give more time to Peoples (and hopefully Nash). Whatever players that will be on the court will need to bring it; Nova is coming off of an unexpected loss to Rutgers last night, and they should be fired up when it comes time to host the Irish.
Moving towards recruiting, Urban Meyer may be in some trouble for illegally recruiting junior college receiver Carl Moore. The basic story goes something like this:
Moore wasn't too interested in moving to the swamp, so Meyer began contacting his girlfriend, offering her a scholarship to do gymnastics for the Gators. Eventually, the girl was convinced and Carl soon followed. However, it is against NCAA violations for the coach of one sport to recruit for another. Additionally, Meyer constantly calling Maranda Smith (the gymnast) would have violated the stipulation that gymnastic recruits can only be called once a week. This story requires me to put up our favorite Meyer picture.
"Omar Hunter and Urban Meyer should be able to relate quite well to one another.
Meyer once fell in love with Notre Dame before ultimately spurning the Fighting Irish for the sunshine of Florida. Hunter has now done the same thing."
Here's another opinion from Aaron Taylor:
"if you ask me about just how big a loss Omar Hunter will turn out to be, as a buddy of mine did recently … well, I’ll have to be honest and tell you, “Who knows?” What I can tell you about Omar is that it’s clear that he’s not a very good decision maker, so let’s wish him well. Besides, once he’s done playing football he can always go back to ITT Tech or DeVry Truck Driving School and finish his degree."
Continuing with the Irish alumni theme of this post, this week's quote also comes from Taylor, which comments on his 1990 recruiting class and its similarities to the upcoming class:
Instead of running from adversity, these guys are running to the rescue. You’ve got to love that, and the combination of attitude, talent and hunger could take these kids a long way. Or at least it should."
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Sunday, January 20, 2008
Friday, January 18, 2008
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Ball handling once again looked like a concern last night. McAlarney had more turnovers than assists, and while Jackson was able to pick up 8 dimes, he did so at the cost of 5 turnovers. All together, ND gave up the ball 15 times; better than their 24 against Marquette, but definitely an area to improve on in the near future.
Lastly, Cincinnati was seemingly able to grab offensive boards at will against the Irish, and the defensive rebounds we did come away with looked awfully sloppy. Especially against bigger teams, Notre Dame needs to learn how to box out and control the paint, or we could be in big trouble against Roy Hibbert and Georgetown on January 19th.
Monday, January 14, 2008
Against the better judgement of the school, I've been asked back for another semester of classes. So as I prepare to drop some hefty cash in the bookstore, I'll take the opportunity to create some new reading for all of the blog starved Domers out there.
Critics of the current BCS system were supplied with plenty of evidence to support a playoff system this year; the only close major bowl involved VaTech beating the Jayhawks. I was personally a fan of the pre-BCS system where the champion was decided after the major bowl games had been played. It is in my opinion that the playoff system would just make things too messy. For those of you who disagree with me, however, the OC Domer offers a pretty interesting alternative here. The basic premise is that the winners of the six major conferences and the two highest ranked non-bcs conference are seeded against each other in an eight team playoff; something the talking heads at ESPN are sure to be talking about forever.
In recruiting news, it seems that Urban Meyer's loss to unranked Michigan (coupled with post game comments that seemed to place blame on everyone but himself) is having some affect on his incoming recruits. The Rock Report sums up this situation pretty well. Also in recruiting news, Rich Rodriguez's offense has been recently criticized for its inability to create NFL ready players. Michigan transfer Ryan Mallet especially seemed irked by the offense he decided not to play in, questioning RR's coaching by saying, "How many guys have run the spread and not made it past college?"Irish news around the horn includes Blue Gray Sky issuing some props to Ian Williams for being named a Freshman All-American and also congratulates the team for being smart. The Sporting News predicts that JC will be a breakout performer in 2008, but understandably so says that Weis, despite his hefty buyout, is on the hot seat next season.
Poor shooting from beyond the arc, too many turnovers, and an inability to maintain any momentum led to the men's team getting properly thumped by Marquette over the weekend. Fortunately, the Irish have a chance to rebound against Cincinnati tomorrow evening, and I'm praying that my lab that is during the game will be cancelled so I can cheer them on properly.
If you're still looking for a little football fix, check out Box's Blog from the Sporting News where he gives out a list of 'best of's' from the 2007 season. If that isn't enough reason to check it out, each award is accompanied with a YouTube clip.
Lastly, I'de like to give a shout out to recent transfer Munir Prince. His good work ethic on and off the field made him the kind of guy you point to when describing what a student athlete should be. Best of luck to you at Missouri.Keep it real Domers. Beat Bearcats!
Thursday, January 3, 2008
On the recruiting trail, most of you have probably figured out by now that Omar Hunter, a previous verbal commit and amazing nose tackle, has jumped ship, presumably leaving the Irish for Darth Meyer’s squad in Gainesville. There are likely a few Domers who feel betrayed, but I feel that South Bend Tribune writer Jeff Carroll summed up this incident the best:
“As long as this development doesn't foreshadow a mass exodus of this class, the Irish are still in great shape for signing day. Notre Dame-Omar Hunter was a marriage that wasn't meant to last. Why force it?”
In totally unrelated news, Her Loyal Sons put up a nice translation of some of Urban Meyer’s quotes following his bowl loss to U of M. Here’s a comment from reader Vincent Franco to give you some advanced perspective:
“Being a florida resident I listened to his interview live…the radio interviewer was looking for some love for the departing seniors…four or five years of tough practices and a lot of wins in the program…Meyer shocks the guy with his response…absolutely cold hearted…ice cold…I was really surprised…he really doesn’t care about those kids unless you are a star…”
It seems that Weis has already moved on from the loss of Hunter, offering Rivals four star defensive tackle Mike Martin. Previously committed to Michigan, it appears as if Martin has been waiting on the call from Notre Dame for quite some time, and as of right now, it looks like the Irish lost one D-tackle to gain another.
For those of you not fully up to speed with the incoming recruiting class, the US Army All -American Bowl (January 5th) will give a chance to watch 18 of ND’s incoming recruits compete with some of the best in the country. Future Irish running back Jonas Gray has been keeping a diary of his experience of the competition, and it is definitely worth a read. Gray missed practice on Tuesday with a shaken up ankle, but he has still been able to offer readers insight on some of the incoming Irish players:
“Some guys impressed me like John Goodman. I thought he did pretty well.”
“I was able to see Terrelle Pryor and Dayne Crist go head-to-head and I think Dayne got the best of him”
Lastly, the Quote of the Week segment got last Thursday off to spend some time with its family, so today Charlie’s Nasties is happy to give some words of wisdom from early enrollee Sean Cwynar. Offering his thoughts on being a part of the number 1 ranked 2008 recruiting class, Cwynar said, "On paper this class looks like it's going to put us over the top and get us to the next level," Cwynar said. "That's where Notre Dame football should be. I think it's going to really be great. We're going to be great as a class."
Here's hoping you're right Sean. Go Irish.