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ND’s Chuck Martin says his play calling won’t differ much from Kelly’s

Updated: April 19, 2013 11:34AM



SOUTH BEND — The person calling the plays will likely be different.

But Notre Dame’s philosophy on offense will remain the same.

Brian Kelly primarily called the offensive plays for the Irish in his first three seasons as Notre Dame’s coach. Last week, Kelly said offensive coordinator Chuck Martin has handled the play-calling duties in the spring and that he expects that responsibility to continue in the fall.

Martin doesn’t see much to the change.

“I wouldn’t say there are any substantial differences at all,” Martin said Thursday.

Martin worked with Notre Dame’s secondary in 2010-11 before becoming the offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach in 2012. Prior to coming to Notre Dame, he was the coach at Grand Valley State for six seasons. He followed Kelly, and continued the same offense system Kelly installed.

“My starting point on offense was completely his offense,” Martin said. “… You change a little bit every year, but the base fundamentals that he always talks about and I always talk about, the way we think alike on offense (is) partly because our starting point was together. To me, it’s not a huge deal and there’s not going to be any major changes.

“…“If you are changing your game plan and changing your offense every week and always trying to out-scheme somebody, then maybe the play calling is a little more dramatic each week because we are trying to reinvent the wheel,” Martin said. “But if you have a lot of success with what you are doing and know how to attack certain fronts and coverages, then you stick with those beliefs and usually they take over pretty good.”

The Irish anticipate the similarities make for a smooth transition.

“It will keep me involved in the offense in a sense of how I want the game to unfold,” Kelly said Wednesday. “So I’ll still manage the game in a similar fashion. That won’t change. That helps us in that I can focus on winning the game and not being caught up in play calling. Sometimes the emotion of play calling takes you away from the bigger picture, which is how we’re going to win the football game. I’m very confident that that’s going to be a positive in helping us win.

“… I’m able to focus a little bit more on some other areas other than just play calling. That will ultimately be the area where we can improve and help us win.”

Martin said the team’s tempo will vary.

“You would always hope in 2013 on offense to play at different tempos. That’s how the game has evolved,” Martin said. “… The best is snails-paced. That’s my favorite pace. You say what’s my favorite tempo? It’s when we’ve gone into deep freeze because we’ve got a lead. We’re moving the ball methodically down the field and they are behind and they don’t have the ball. I like to be ahead and draining clock all the time. That would be awesome because you win a lot of games that way.”



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