Tag Archives: Syracuse

Down The Tunnel Radio Show – Syracuse Week

-SGG Shamrock

First of all I wanted to thank all of our fans for the outstanding show of support as we had our inaugural show tonight. We had a blast talking Notre Dame Football with all of our fans. You guys are the best and we look forward to speaking to all of you again next week.

This week we talked about Notre Dame taking on Syracuse, the status of the academic investigation, and the addition of Texas A&M to the schedule. We will be on the air live every Thursday night at 8. If you were unable to call in this week we look forward to you calling in next week. Go Irish!


Getting to Know Thy Enemy – Syracuse Week

-SSG Shamrock

Syracuse week rolls on and before we dive into how the game will play out from our perspective its important to look at the matchup from the other side of the table. In a week where we are already introducing the new Down the Tunnel radio show (premiering tomorrow night) we at Down the Tunnel are bringing you yet another new weekly feature. Each week we will have a Q&A with a media member from the opponent the Irish will face that week. This week we were joined by Brent Axe (@BrentAxeMedia), an ESPN Radio host in Syracuse covering Syracuse athletics and is also an AP voter. Brent answers some of our questions about Syracuse and how he thinks the game this weekend will play out.

DTT – After looking back on the first three games of the season, what would you say that the major strength of Syracuse is at this point? What is the major weakness?
Brent – Ironically their biggest strength could also be perceived as a weakness as well as quarterback Terrel Hunt is the team’s leading rusher with 273 yards so far this season. Hunt has done a good job on zone-read plays and is much more decisive this season in Syracuse’s fast-paced offense, but his yardage also has to be attributed to the weakness of wide receivers to get separation, forcing him to take off and run more. Running back Prince-Tyson Gulley is capable of breaking off a big run at any time and Linebacker Cam Lynch has been a major strength as well. He is Top 10 in the country in several defensive categories and looks like he has been shot out of a cannon to begin the year.

The weaknesses have been the struggle of the wide receivers to gain separation. Syracuse’s passing game has been short-range on bubble screens and short routes. The secondary is also a big question mark. The history is there for this unit failing to keep up with athletic receivers.

DTT – Syracuse comes into this game with one of the top 20 rushing offenses in the country while Notre Dame touts a top 20 rushing defense? What makes the Orange rushing attack so potent? How do you think they will far against the Irish defense?
Brent – Versatility. What helps is that Syracuse basically has another running back on the field with Hunt. He’s not a burner, but is elusive and can get to the first-down marker when needed on 3rd down. Gulley is the No.1 guy and has the speed to get to the outside and ability to find the hole. Adonis Ameen-Moore is the power back. He is very similar this year to what Jerome Smith was to the Orange last year. Very hard to bring down. Devante McFarlane and Erv Phillips bring speed. George Morris II has flashed at times, but he has kind of been the odd man out this year.

I’m very curious to see how they do against Notre Dame defense because it is far and away the best they have seen this season.

DTT – Syracuse has seemingly had some trouble in the passing game so far this season. Why do you think that is?
Brent – I think it’s a combination of the receivers struggling to find separation, Hunt still developing as a passer and Syracuse’s offensive philosophy. Offensive Coordinator George McDonald has joined the party of coordinators that want to run as many plays as possible, so I think the tendency is Hunt will take the safe route and keep the chains moving by utilizing the H-back a lot. One big key for this game is Hunt will not have his safety valve in this game as Ashton Broyld got hurt last week against Maryland.

DTT – Who are two Syracuse players that Notre Dame fans have not heard of but will know by the end of the game on Saturday?
Brent – I’ll go with Cam Lynch and Brisly Estime. Watch Sean Hickey at left tackle as well. He is going to be an early-round NFL draft pick.

DTT – How do you see the game playing out? What is your prediction?
Brent – I think their best hope is to put pressure on Golson and try to force him into a few mistakes, which won’t be easy considering how he has played this year. Syracuse will play physical “hard-nosed” football, as head coach Scott Shafer likes to say, and will blitz a lot. But the offense just isn’t ready to keep pace. McDonald better have a few tricks up his sleeve. But at the end of the day I think they will be physically dominated by the Irish ‘D. and will struggle to score. Their kicking game is a mess right now. If they can’t finish drives with points, this game will get away from them fast.

I’ve got Notre Dame 41, Syracuse 14.

Tuesday Chat with Brian Kelly – Syracuse Week

-SSG Shamrock

Brian Kelly met with the media today to discuss this weekend’s contest with the Syracuse Orangemen as well provide some new information on the ongoing academic investigation. Down the Tunnel was there and has all the pertinent information from Coach Kelly’s weekly press conference.

Key Information 

  • On the weekly depth chart release there was a significant shake up on the offensive line. The revamped offensive line has Ronnie Stanley at LT, Nick Martin at LG, Matt Hegarty at Center, Steve Elmer at RG, and Christian Lombard at RT. Coach Kelly did make sure to note that this may not be the exact offensive line that starts on Saturday and that Connor Hanratty and Mike McGlinchey will also receive first team reps this week.
  • Amir Carlise is OUT this week against Syracuse and is should be seen as questionable for next week against Stanford. Coach Kelly said that Carlise has been responding well to his PRP treatments and will start moving him around at the end of the week.
  • Torii Hunter is slated to make his Notre Dame debut this weekend and will get work with CJ Prosise in the slot.
  • Austin Collinsworth will be back in the lineup this weekend after missing the first three games with an MCL sprain.
  • Brian Kelly said that he was informed last Friday that the academic committee had been official formed and that if all goes well the hearings should be concluded by the end of NEXT week. Kelly also made it clear he was not a spokesman of the administration and that when a student is notified of a violation, only the student is notified and not the parents.
  • Coach Kelly stated that there is still not a “go to number one” running back in the backfield. Greg Bryant has been doing a very good job of understanding schemes but he has to unseat two players in Tarean Folston and Cam McDaniel that have played a lot of football game. Bryant has only played in three college games and still has work to do.
  • Kelly talked about the ACC conference alignment and how the main factors that went into the decision was ensuring high quality bowl tie-ins as well as a conference that made geographic sense for Notre Dame.
  • Kelly said that Malik Zaire is getting 60% of the reps in practice on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and 40% of the reps on Thursday. The amount of reps that Zaire gets just shows how confident the staff is in Golson as the quarterback. Kelly said there is no temptation to play Zaire at all.
  • Kelly gave credit to Paul Longo and Brian VanGorder for having so many freshman ready to play and contribute on the defensive side of the ball. Kelly also said they knew before the season that the staff knew they were going to have to play freshman but they didn’t know exactly who would emerge.

Check back all week long for all your Notre Dame coverage of this weekends matchup against Syracuse and dont forget to tune into the first broadcast of the Down the Tunnel Radio show on Thursday night. We will be taking your calls live!