Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Buh-Bye: Irish Secure Second Straight First Round Bye

After another wild weekend on the hardwood, the top four spots were official secured for next week's Big East Tournament. Despite the Irish causing many to pull out the Pepto Bismal bottle yesterday at DePual, Notre Dame is no worse than fourth in the league standings. Depending on what unfolds this week, the Irish could move up a spot and be in a whole different bracket.

Below is what the Big East Tournament would look like if it ended today:
1st Round
8.) Cincinnati vs. 9.) Villanova
5.) Marquette vs. 12.) Providence
7.) W. Virginia vs. 10.) Seton Hall
6.) Pittsburgh vs. 11.) Syracuse

1.) Georgetown vs. Cincinnati/Villanova winner
4.) Notre Dame vs. Marquette/Providence winner
2.) Louisville vs. West Virginia/Seton Hall winner
3.) Connecticut vs. Pittsburgh/Syracuse winner

Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner
Game 7 winner vs. Game 8 winner

Game 9 winner vs. Game 10 winner

A lot will still be sorted out this week, but first things first for the Irish as the Red Storm close out the home portion for the 2007-08 schedule and then off on the road to the always dangerous South Florida. Whatever happens, happens as Notre Dame will have to play at its best to survive for another day!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Recruiting Buzz Gets Down to Crunch Time

Boy what a difference a year can make recruiting-wise. Last year at this time, Charlie Weis and company set it on cruise control before National Signing Day only to be stiffed at the altar from a few recruits. This time around, Weis is pulling out all the guns to land what will be his best class so far, and quite possibly one of the best in the nation.

First it was getting a reversal of fortune by previous Texas A&M verbal commit Kapron Lewis-Moore to decommit from the Aggies and pledge his intentions to the Irish. Now it looks promising on another defensive gem, Keith Wells.

South Bend and Notre Dame’s campus made lasting impressions on Wells. He was on campus this past weekend and took in the sights and sounds of Notre Dame, including the 89-80 Irish basketball victory over DePaul. Wells will announce at 11:30 a.m. today if he will play college football at Notre Dame, Ohio State or Tennessee.

It does look good for the Irish after luring him to even visit the campus so late in the game. Adding new Assistant Head Coach for Defense, John Tenuta, didn’t hurt the Irish chances either.

“Notre Dame made a lot of leeway this weekend,” Wells said. “Right now, they’re all even.”

Last week, the Irish looked to be a longshot to sign Wells. Now, Weis and company appear to have a legitimate chance.

“The visit to Notre Dame was nice,” Wells said. “I had heard about the campus, but I wasn’t expecting it to be that beautiful. You could just feel the tradition.”

The Irish quite possibly could end up with 25 recruits if speedster Milton Knox signs with Notre Dame. Knox was also in town this past weekend and also came away pleased with his visit.

“I definitely can see myself in South Bend for the next four years. It would be awesome to run out of that tunnel with Dayne wearing the Blue and Gold.”

Even though this over a week old, but I have a problem with these recruiting services, particularly everyone’s favorite, ESPN. So-called “HS recruiting guru”, Tom Luginbill, receives the Jackass quote of the week by saying this on recruiting page:

“Notre Dame noticeably drops No. 3 to No. 7; it has compiled a very good class with multiple needs being addressed but doesn't have as many elite or impact guys as the classes ranked ahead of them.”

Okay, let me stop Tommy in his tracks. The Irish have 10 top 150 players according to your poll. Only one other school (Florida) has more, while Miami has the same amount as Notre Dame. Below is ESPN current class rankings with how many current verbals and how many ESPN 150 recruits they have:

1. Florida 23 verbal commits, 11 ESPN 150 recruits
2. Miami 26 verbal commits, 10 ESPN 150 recruits
3. Georgia 20 verbal commits, 7 ESPN 150 recruits
4. Clemson 20 verbal commits, 7 ESPN 150 recruits
5. Ohio State 18 verbal commits, 8 ESPN 150 recruits
6. Oklahoma 19 verbal commits, 8 ESPN 150 recruits
7. Notre Dame 23 verbal commits, 10 ESPN 150 recruits
8. USC 16 verbal commits, 8 ESPN 150 recruits
9. Alabama 26 verbal commits, 4 ESPN 150 recruits
10. Texas 20 verbal commits, 9 ESPN 150 recruits

What is Luginbill’s logic in this? Is he going by who has the most recruits, or is he going by who has the most Top 150 players? Either way you slice it, Notre Dame is a legitimate Top 3 recruiting class. If the Irish do in fact, land both Wells and Knox; watch out, the ranking could be higher according to other recruiting services.

Whatever the case may be, Notre Dame is going to have one heckeva a class!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Jacobson Apologist Replies

Dana Jacobson apologist and non-Jesus follower, Paddyman, has been very busy justifying Mr. Ed's comments. Basically Paddy insists that this has been way overblown and that Ms. Jacobson should get a pass. He doesn't feel that anything bad was said because it was a roast, a PRIVATE FUNCTION. Paddy also goes on to state that if this was about Allah, nothing would have been said. Okay, hold up!

First off, when you spout off about religion, yet alone, Jesus Christ, you are crossing the line.

Secondly, a roast is suppose to be funny with humorous jabs. This was a roast that was for Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic. I don't recall that Jesus or Allah or any other religious figure was the object of the roast.

When there were points expressed about how Don Imus and Rush Limbaugh were fired for their comments about the Rutgers women's basketball team and Donovan McNabb, Paddy questioned the validity of Limbaugh's employment with ESPN.

The poor soul, needs to check his facts. Limbaugh was a regular for ESPN's Sunday NFL Countdown show: http://espn.go.com/gen/news/2003/1001/1628537.html. I find it funny how ESPN fires Limbaugh for his comments about McNabb getting preferential treatment because he's an African-American quarterback, but only gives Jacobson a week off of work for saying F#$% Jesus. Something is not right there.

Oh well, I guess some folks still don't get it. It's like beating a dead Dana Jacobson, err, I mean horse! I guess we already have one nomination for next week's Jackass of the Week. Here's a heartfelt HEE-HAW, HEE-HAW, to you Paddyman! The short bus is calling ya.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Fighting Irish End Year Inside the Top 20

After the final buzzer was sounded last night in San Antonio, so too was the college basketball season for 2007-2008. Although things didn't end up where most Irish fans would have liked, Notre Dame finished the year inside the Top 20 at 19 in the final ESPN/USAToday Coaches Poll. Not too many, including myself, would have predicted the Irish to finish in the Top 20 at the end of the season or have an All-American in Luke Harangody. They did, and will have some big epectations to fill for the 2008-2009 season!

For the season, Notre Dame ended up near the top in most NCAA categories as a team and individually:

Scoring Offense - 20th (79.0)
Scoring Margin - 29th (9.4)
FG % Defense - 50th (41.1)
3pt. FG's per game - 35th (8.3)
3pt. FG % - 7th (40.5)
Free Throw % - 38th (73.8)
Rebound Margin - 23rd (5.7)
Assists per game - 1st (18.4)
Won/Loss % - 26th (75.8)
Personal Fouls per game - 8th (15.1)
Assist-to-Turnover Ratio - 4th (1.42)

Points per game - 30th Harangody (20.4)
3pt. FG per game - 23rd Kyle McAlarney (3.3)
3pt. FG % - 21st McAlarney (44.1)
Free Throw % - 39th Rob Kurz (85.3)
Rebounds per game - 12th Harangody (10.6)
Assists per game - 25th Tory Jackson (5.8)

1. Kansas 37-3
2. Memphis 38-2
3. North Carolina 36-3
4. UCLA 35-4
5. Texas 31-7
6. Louisville 27-9
7. Tennessee 31-5
8. Xavier 30-7
9. Davidson 29-7
10. Wisconsin 31-5
11. Stanford 28-8
12. Georgetown 28-6
13. Michigan State
14. Butler 30-4
15. Washington State 26-9
16. Duke 28-6
17. West Virginia 26-11
18. Pittsburgh 27-10
19. Notre Dame 25-8
20. Purdue 25-9
21. Marquette 25-10
22. Western Kentucky 29-7
23. Drake 28-5
24. Villanova 22-13
25. Vanderbilt 26-8

With four starters returning, including Big East Player of the Year Harangody, and fellow First Team All-Big East McAlarney, the Irish could be a possible preseason Top 10! Notre Dame will be tested early and often with some possible big time matchups at the EA Sports Maui Invitational in November and another tough Big East conference slate.

Next season could be the year for the Irish to make a serious tournament run. Brey's boys could bring some more Cheer, Cheer, for Old Notre Dame!