Is Notre Dame football finally starting to live up to the preseason hype?

BREAKING NEWS: For the first time in five games the Irish finally avoid turning the ball over a single time. This is a major victory in and of itself.  To top off that great news, the Irish dominated Purdue 38-10.  And for those of you keeping count, yes, that makes 3 wins in a row for the Irish.

Enough good things can’t be said about Notre Dame’s team performance Saturday night. Granted, we played Purdue (2-2) whose only victories are over Middle Tennessee and Southeast Missouri State, but we outperformed them in startling fashion.

Let’s start with the offense.

Michael Floyd was back in action! Against Pitt, Floyd caught only 4 passes for 27 yards. Now compare that to this week’s 12 receptions for 137 yards and a touchdown. Clearly, Tommy Rees was happy to have him as an open receiver down field this game…and so were we. Plus, we can’t forget about TJ Jones and Tyler Eifert who also each put 7 points on the board for us. Well done, receivers!

Cierre Wood and Jonas Gray had a combined 35 carries for 285 yards and 2 touchdowns. I’ve been a Notre Dame football fan forever, and these two running backs are some of the best I’ve seen play around here in a long time.  When we hand the ball off to them, we expect big things and they lately, they deliver. Big credit can go to the offensive line too for creating the open gaps for them to power through.

Tommy Rees completed 24 out of 40 passes for 254 yards and no interceptions. Not perfect, but good enough for us.

Now, just for fun, let’s do a quick offensive stats comparison between ND and Purdue. First downs: ND - 34, Purdue - 17. Total yards: ND - 551, Purdue - 276. Now if that isn’t domination then I don’t know what is. Hard to believe this was the same team that only scored 15 points against Pittsburgh last week.

If we think the offense was impressive, the “D-boys” as they call themselves easily matched that. The Boilermakers entered the game ranked 11th nationally in rushing but we held them to only 87 yards on 27 carries. When our first string defense was in, we only gave up a field goal. The one touchdown Purdue had came with 21 seconds left in the fourth quarter when it was mostly our backups on the field.

So after 3 wins in a row and an awesome performance against Purdue can we say the Irish are back on track for the long haul? I’ll gladly say it on behalf of all of us! In fact, we’ve even got a couple believers from the AP Poll. In the updated rankings, we received 24 votes. It’s still far away from our former spot at #16 in the preseason polls, but it’s a step in the right direction.



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