Post-Tribune Latest news from Post-Tribune Online en-us (Editor) Post-Tribune 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Pope: Irish gearing up for Blue-Gold game ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Notre Dame offensive coordinator Mike Denbrock has a wish list for Saturday’s Blue-Gold game. He wants to see quarterbacks Everett Golson and Malik Zaire make good decisions with the football. He wants running backs Cam McDaniel, Tarean Folston and Greg Bryant to know when to make the best out of a bad situation, if such a case arises. He wants to see the receivers aggressively playing the football in the air when they have the opportunity to make a catch. “I’m looking for an attacking style of offense and these guys carrying the fight to the defense … ]]> Wed, 09 Apr 2014 02:10:46 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Notre Dame will benefit from QB battle ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — This is the time of the year for crazy predictions. The time you fill out a bracket and pick a No. 15 seed to topple No. 2 seed. The time of year you still believe the Cubs have a chance at winning it all. Well, here’s a sports prediction that is not off the wall. This isn’t exactly going out on a limb, but barring an injury, I’d be surprised if Everett Golson isn’t the quarterback when Notre Dame opens the season Aug. 30 against Rice. Much has been made of the competition at the position this … ]]> Wed, 26 Mar 2014 02:07:27 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Brian VanGorder’s experience will benefit Irish ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — It was 2005 and Brian VanGorder had just started the transition from Georgia to the NFL as the linebackers coach at Jacksonville. He stood near a group of players, clapped his hands and said “let’s go.” Mike Peterson, a middle linebacker for the Jaguars, had a message for VanGorder. “And he said, ‘hey, rookie, this is a marathon,’ ” VanGorder said Tuesday. “And literally that’s how the NFL players saw, it was this 16‑game schedule and the four preseason games and he was going, ‘hey, it’s a long way before we get there.’ So he kind of … ]]> Sun, 16 Feb 2014 06:41:12 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Irish prepared for changes on defense ]]> Lead story image

Oct. 18 just got a little more interesting. That’s when Notre Dame travels to Tallahassee, Fla., to take on Florida State. The game was already going to be one of the highlights of the Irish’s 2014 schedule. Now, it’s a contest against the final BCS national champions. A team that will include the Heisman Trophy winner, quarterback Jameis Winston. It will be a test for Notre Dame’s defense. A defense that will have some major changes from the 2013 season. Defensive coordinator Bob Diaco is now the head coach at Connecticut. Defensive end Stephon Tuitt, nose guard Louis Nix III, … ]]> Sun, 09 Feb 2014 06:37:47 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Notre Dame season filled with naughty, nice moments ]]> Lead story image

It certainly has been an up and down 2013 season for Notre Dame. That’s been reflected off the field, first with Everett Golson’s suspension to the recent news of his return. And on the field, with victories against Michigan State and Arizona Sate and a tough loss at Pittsburgh. The 8-4 Irish close out the season Saturday against Rutgers in the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium. With the season coming close to an end, I figured there’s no better time to look at some of the naughty and nice moments of the year. After all, a certain someone in a … ]]> Sun, 26 Jan 2014 06:34:31 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: ND’s Everett Golson has opportunity to lead in return ]]> Lead story image

Notre Dame has one football game left in 2103. And while the Pinstripe Bowl will serve in part as a swan song for the seniors, the lead up to the game gives the Irish a jump on 2014. Coach Brian Kelly and his staff get a little more time with some of the returning players during practices. A little more time to evaluate the strides the younger players have made. And a little more time to teach. Those are just some of the benefits of qualifying for a bowl. Everett Golson isn’t one of those players practicing. But the quarterback … ]]> Sun, 19 Jan 2014 12:06:18 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: ND’s Brian Kelly wants ‘tough gentlemen’ on his team ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Brian Kelly noticed something hours before Notre Dame’s game against BYU. “Never was the weather a factor or a consideration,” the Notre Dame coach said during his Tuesday news conference. “When we walked out of the hotel — the cozy, warm confines of the hotel — it was cold and it was windy. And I didn’t hear anybody talk about the weather. At no time did I hear anybody talk about ‘well, it’s cold out today.’ They were focused. There was a single-minded focus on playing that game. “… That’s the way we’ve got to play this … ]]> Sat, 28 Dec 2013 06:39:16 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: ND’s ‘unique’ senior class set for home finale ]]> Lead story image

35 … ]]> Tue, 19 Nov 2013 23:32:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ Football: With no BCS shot, Irish remain motivated ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Notre Dame had to adjust its goals after September losses to Michigan and Oklahoma ended any chances of returning to the BCS national title game. Saturday’s 28-21 upset loss at Pittsburgh knocked the Irish out of the picture for a BCS bowl game. So now what? “It’s Notre Dame. If that’s not enough to play for then you are at the wrong school,” senior wide receiver TJ Jones said Tuesday. “Even though we’re not going to go BCS, it’s still playing for your brothers. It’s playing for your family and the bonds that you build together with … ]]> Sat, 14 Dec 2013 06:39:28 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Notre Dame hopeful defensive line will be intact Saturday ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Sheldon Day, Louis Nix III and Stephon Tuitt haven’t started the same game on Notre Dame’s defensive line since Oct. 5 against Arizona State. The three last played in the same contest Oct. 19 against USC. Day and Nix have missed two games this season because of injuries. The Irish have had to make some adjustments. But the team has still found a way to win four consecutive games. The trio might — and let’s stress might — be together Saturday at Pittsburgh. “We’re hopeful about Louis being able to play a role this weekend,” Notre Dame … ]]> Wed, 06 Nov 2013 14:40:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: ND seeks another November to remember ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — November is right around the corner. And for Brian Kelly that usually means more winning. Notre Dame has a 10-1 record in November since Kelly arrived in 2010. Stanford is the only team to beat the Irish, knocking off Notre Dame 28-14 in 2011. Notre Dame has Navy, Pittsburgh, BYU and the Cardinal left on this year’s regular-season schedule. The Irish will need another big November if it has any hopes of going to a BCS bowl this season. Kelly said several factors come into play for a successful November. “First of all, you’ve got to stay … ]]> Mon, 02 Dec 2013 11:24:29 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Notre Dame midseason report card ]]> Lead story image

Notre Dame isn’t in contention for the national title. Heck, the team isn’t even ranked in the top 25 in the first BCS standings. Turnovers, and the inability to stop big plays, were costly in the Irish’s two losses this season. But if the game is close late, Notre Dame has found a way to win. Just past the midway point of the regular season, here’s a look at the 5-2 Irish. Offense Quarterback Tommy Rees threw three interceptions against Oklahoma. But he’s had five touchdowns and one interception the next two games. Rees left the USC game with a … ]]> Sun, 24 Nov 2013 06:42:07 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: For Brian Kelly, Irish, USC game ‘is our rivalry’ ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Neither team is ranked. Both have two losses. And one has an interim coach. But there is still plenty to look forward to Saturday when Notre Dame meets Southern California. “I think we go through the season in so many weeks, I think it’s on the other side, in other words, other teams (are) really calling it their rivalry game. I think our players will be the first ones to admit that this is our rivalry game. This is our game that we look forward to against USC,” Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said during his weekly … ]]> Sun, 17 Nov 2013 09:59:25 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: ‘Little things’ are the difference between 3-2, 5-0 for ND ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly recently put together a 10-minute clip from last season. The highlights included Pittsburgh hitting the upright on a field-goal attempt in overtime, the fourth-quarter rally against BYU and quarterback Tommy Rees converting a key pass to John Goodman during the Purdue game. “My point being the margin last year was razor-thin,” Kelly said Tuesday, “and the margin this year is razor-thin.” Notre Dame’s lack of execution of the “ordinary plays,” as Kelly put it, has the team at 3-2 heading into the Shamrock Series contest against Arizona State in Arlington, Texas. “We … ]]> Sun, 03 Nov 2013 06:35:05 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Finishing strong in fourth quarter a forte for Irish ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — It wasn’t pretty. Not that it had to be or that mattered much to the Notre Dame football team. All the Irish were concerned about was the result. And once again, the team found a way to win a close game. “We just play our game. We knew this game was going to be a tough, physical game,” Notre Dame linebacker Carlo Calabrese said after Saturday’s 17-13 victory against Michigan State. “And we knew it was going to come to the end. We just grinded it out and came (out) on top.” Notre Dame has appeared to … ]]> Sat, 26 Oct 2013 06:40:03 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Getting run going will be tough for ND vs. stingy Spartans ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Notre Dame is still trying to establish its ground game. Through three games, Michigan State has shown it might be easier to push a semi-truck up a hill than to gain rushing yards on its defense. No. 22 Notre Dame (2-1) knows jumpstarting its running game won’t be easy this Saturday against the Spartans (3-0). “They make it very difficult to run the football,” Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said Tuesday. “You’ve got to find ways to manufacture runs.” Just how tough is the Spartans’ defense? Take a look at these imposing numbers. Michigan State limited Western … ]]> Sat, 19 Oct 2013 19:36:57 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Brian Kelly, Irish focused on improving executuion ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly noticed something different in the aftermath of Saturday’s loss at Michigan. “Dinner doesn’t taste good,” Kelly said during his Tuesday news conference. Kelly knows there’s only one way to fix that, and that’s by getting back to work. The Irish are doing just that. The team turned the page from the 41-30 loss at the Big House and is concentrating on the next opponent, Purdue. “Meetings are a lot harder. Practice is probably a little bit more spirited. But you know, it still comes down to the attention to detail,” Kelly said. … ]]> Sat, 12 Oct 2013 06:39:12 -0500 <![CDATA[ POPE: Brian Kelly tries to shift focus to field for ‘historic rivalry’ ]]> Lead story image

SOUTH BEND — Brian Kelly wanted to clear something up at the start of his Tuesday news conference. “This is a great and historic rivalry that we’ll be playing this Saturday, so let’s get that out of the way right away so we don’t have to answer any more questions about this rivalry,” the Notre Dame coach said, referring to the top-20 showdown with Michigan. This was a smart way of turning the page. And turning the attention to the football field. “We’re excited about this game, we’re excited about playing it,” Kelly said. “This will be decided by the … ]]> Sat, 05 Oct 2013 06:36:18 -0500