10 Wins Again: Florida State Instant Reaction

Notre Dame won on Senior Day and it wasn’t close. An interception by the forgotten Nick Coleman on Florida State’s first series brought the ball deep into Seminole territory. From there, the Irish would score and the route was on inside a frigid Notre Dame Stadium.

Run Game Stepped Up (and On FSU)

The Irish really needed a strong performance from their offensive line and it got it with much more to boot. The offensive line responded with a bullying of Florida State for a season-high 365 yards while offering competent protection of Brandon Wimbush through the passing game.

On Senior Day, the Irish got a heck of a performance from Dexter Williams who scampered for 202 yards on 20 carries with a pair of touchdown runs. The night was summed up best by a 12-play drive that bled into the beginning of the 4th quarter with Notre Dame running the ball on each snap for 97 yards and the nail-in-the-coffin touchdown.

Wimbush Did His Job Well 

This wasn’t an easy spot for Brandon Wimbush to come in for the injured Ian Book but he rode the wave of early momentum and threw about 6 really beautiful passes, including a trio of touchdowns.

Wimbush did cool off a bit finishing with 130 yards on 12/25 while throwing 2 interceptions. However, he was potent with his legs as usual (68 yards) and played quite serviceable while the game was in doubt.

The Defense was Sleepy

In a way, it was actually a very 2018 performance for the Notre Dame defense. Florida State felt like it was getting some mojo going on the ground or connecting on some passes at times. And yet, they held the Seminoles to 4.1 YPP and largely kept the opponent in check.

FSU didn’t help themselves with numerous drops, though.

It was the type of game where Notre Dame really could’ve screwed down and made this a super ugly game but some penalties and nice plays from FSU continued drives just enough to be annoying.

Some Timely Plays

For most of this game, Notre Dame didn’t have a large edge in yards and yet the scoreboard read something different. The difference was that Notre Dame made some very timely plays while Florida State simply could not keep driving long enough to make it close, including failing on 4th down on 3 separate occasions.

Notre Dame was scorching hot on 3rd down in the first half which was a huge part of building an early lead.

10 Wins!

Hey, the Irish finally have back-to-back 10-win seasons for the first time since 1993.

By |2018-11-10T23:27:17+00:00November 10th, 2018|Football|42 Comments

42
Leave a Reply

Please Login to comment
10 Comment threads
32 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
19 Comment authors
spider-mantlndmaNDForeverdannan14juicebox Recent comment authors
newest oldest most voted
hooks orpik
hooks orpik

I respectfully disagree with the defense being sleepy. 1st and goal from the 5…conceded no points. Sure, FSU could have kicked a meaningless pity field goal that wouldn’t have changed anything but I loved the defense. Especially when Wimbush threw 2 INT in 3 possessions in the 2nd half, the game could have tightened up. It didn’t. They set the tone with 2 turnovers on FSU’s first 6 plays. I was impressed by them, they have a high bar with the standard they have set and IMO they cleared it again tonight, as they pretty much have all season.

Alize Mack, just wow. 2 of the nicest touchdown catches you could ever see. In a way really fitting that he put it all together in his last home game after a career of starts and stops and ups and downs. Just an amazing athlete and mix of power, speed and size.

Dex too on that senior redemption tour. Chewed up the FSU rush defense which was really good. 200+ rush yards, man. Also the line was awesome. Banks and Hainsey making some great blocks to spring #2 for long runs.

Wimbush with a great final note as well. Wasn’t perfect or always pretty but he carries himself well. So glad he could make what most (myself included) would be a dog fight into a win running away. Loved him lowering the shoulder and bowling over a guy to get a 3rd down conversion when it mattered. Doesn’t always have great execution but can’t question his heart.

10 wins for 3 times in 4 years. Looking great in mid-November for once. Special stuff.

Brendan R

Some more notes on the rushing performance… Rush defense was actually one of the few things FSU has been doing well – 33rd in S&P+ rush defense, 17th in rush yards allowed, 6th in yards per carry.

Notre Dame’s 365 rushing yards today is the most FSU has allowed since Georgia Tech went for 401 against them in 2009. The 7.3 yards per carry is the best against them since Florida hit 8.0 per carry back in 2009 as well.

I didn’t see the source, but Murtaugh said that he saw Dex is the first 200 yard rusher the Noles have allowed since 1984. Domination.

Scarponi
Scarponi

Helps that after Wimbush’s second interception that Long/BK refused to call another passing play for the rest of the game (final 23 minutes!).

KG
KG

Also…LOLUSC.

It was pretty close to perfect last night. Complete domination with no real concerns the whole night, no chance FSU was ever going to win. Wimbush came in and did well and his mistakes didn’t cost us dearly when they came, but at the same time we’re reminded why he’s the backup. 42-13 is dominant enough that no one in the media blinks an eye or suggest we underplayed, but at the same time anyone who knows this team can say with confidence that had Book played, we’d have put up 60. We still MIGHT have gotten into the 50s if we’d chosen to do so, but with how Brandon was passing in the second half and how easily we were running, the right move was to pound it out.

I’m somewhere between Eric and Hooks–the defense played well, and stepped up when needed, but we also gave FSU a lot more on the ground (almost a full yard more per rush, IIRC) than they’d been getting.

Also, part of me wonders if those WRs look as bad as they did and drop all those footballs if the temperature is 67 instead of 27. Still, our guys played in the same conditions and made the catches, so who cares.

Great win, now comes the biggest test left. Syracuse is a weird good/not great/decent team. With Book, I think we have a comfortable 10+ point win, where the only people worried are those of us agonizing in the slack over every play. With Wimbush…I don’t know. But the advanced stats preview is going to be interesting.

Brendan R

Funny, I said the same thing to my buddy about Book getting us 60+ last night.

I’m OK with the defense. Bummed that they drove it relatively well – easy to forget now that they turned it over on downs once at our 18 and once at our 3 – but I get what Eric’s saying about vanilla D. Lea probably figured he could do enough to hold them down without putting anything overly interesting on film, and when he did need to do something, like on the 4th and goal from the 3, he dialed up nice little wrinkles to throw them off. He has growth in front of him, for sure, but man, I’m impressed by Lea’s work as a rookie DC.

Separate topic – really cool that BK called a timeout to pull Wimbush and let him hear it from the crowd in what what may well be his last game in the stadium. However rough some of his career moments might’ve been, he’s 12-3 as a starter and he was instrumental in dominations of USC, Michigan, and Florida State. He deserves a secure place in Irish lore just for that.

hooks orpik
hooks orpik

13-3 now, right? 4-0 this year (Michigan, Ball St., Vandy and now FSU) and 9-3 last year (started all games but the UNC game in a 10-3 season). Sorry for the petty correction but gotta give him his due and make it all the more impressive.

spider-man
spider-man

Technically BW was the starter against LSU, but when I remember that game I think of Book as the QB.

irish_bandit_10
irish_bandit_10

Just here to say I was wrong when I predicted 9-3 and felt 8-4 was more likely than a 10-win regular season. I’m glad BK has beaten history and finally delivered back-to-back 10-win seasons, and making it 3 of the last 4.
I still think this team gets blown out by either Alabama or Clemson, but I like our chances vs. anyone else with Book leading the offense.

IrishTexan
IrishTexan

Unfortunately, barring truly unforeseen circumstances, Alabama or Clemson is our most likely first round opponent. I like our chances against Clemson better, and think any team has a better chance against bama if saban and his team of 40 “consultants” don’t have a month to pick apart film.

rudy8655
rudy8655

Although I am sure he somehow is able to prepare his team for all three possible opponents in that amount of time.

IrishTexan
IrishTexan

Yes I’m sure they do prescouting on potential finals opponents. History indicates that, except for their loss to tOSU, Bama blows out semifinal opponents and plays close games in the final. Part of that may be due to quality of competition, but I think part is definitely related to preparation time

rudy8655
rudy8655

It’s what I hated about 2012/13 BCSCG is that prep time definitely favored Bama, I dont think we win that game either way, but I think it would’ve been more respectable with them only having a week of prep.

IrishTexan
IrishTexan

They definitely found some stuff on tape. It seemed like every play was tecmo bowl and they picked our play

irish_bandit_10
irish_bandit_10

I remember watching an ESPN segment with Saban talking through some of the film in that game. Watching him explain how the offensive and defensive alignments created, essentially, pick-your-poison assignments for our LBs and Safeties made me realize that Bama knew they were going to stomp ND before they even got to the stadium that day.

sleepy man
sleepy man

Any word on Love? I thought they said on the broadcast after he took that hit to the head or neck that he went into the medical tent. I saw someone tweet last night that he was on the sideline without his helmet.

Russell Knox
Russell Knox

Back to back 10 win seasons. I love the direction this team is going.

IrishTexan
IrishTexan

You’re clearly too optimistic. The sages over on NDNation recognize this for what it is – a team achieving success (although nothing can truly be called success until we win a championship, and even that won’t count unless we beat bama by 50) in spite of it’s coach.

SacofRome
SacofRome

OT, but with Northwestern clinching the B1G west we can claim the overall Big Ten title already

Scarponi
Scarponi

Not if tOSU takes it down. Does that mean we have to root for Michigan?

dannan14
dannan14

Nah, we can just root for aOSU to play terribly.

tlndma
tlndma

Or the ground to open up and swallow both teams and all their fans.

GoldenIsThyFame
GoldenIsThyFame

I think all of the people who truly believed ND’s offense was in deep trouble (myself included) completely forgot how incompetent Florida State is this year.

IrishTexan
IrishTexan

FSU as a team is garbage. However, their one bright point has been run defense. Most impressive to me was the running game against a pretty solid rush d.

GoldenIsThyFame
GoldenIsThyFame

Agreed even if their defense has been free-falling the last few weeks. There was actually a time in 2016 when Francois looked like he was going to be awesome, but their offensive line struggles have permanently ruined him.

kiwifan
kiwifan

I’ve watched him off and on the last few years. He’s been crushed by godawful Oline play. Maybe more solid hits than any other major CFB qb.

juicebox
juicebox

Two best comments of any NBC commentator ever during and ND game.

First:
The catch that got overturned as an INT that got wiped out for DPI. When they mentioned that there was also a late hands to the face of Wimbush, should have been personal foul. One of them said “do we have enough flags for FSU?”

Second (but actually related to your post):
If they were to build a statue of Francois, it would have to be him lying on his back as the OL went to pick him up off the ground.

I loved hearing them rip on FSU all night. Poor Willie. At least he looked comfortable in that sweat suit.

irish_bandit_10
irish_bandit_10

While hearing Tirico say “And that’s Florida State’s season in a nutshell” on the PAT block and return was hilarious, I really felt bad for FSU fans watching that broadcast. We get it, FSU is bad and they make a lot of mistakes. Saying it over and over doesn’t really add anything to the show

juicebox
juicebox

I wonder if Tirico has spent a little too much time online where you can’t escape talkin bout the noles. Maybe he was glad to rub it in a bit.

I’ve never actually heard bad things about their fans in person (as opposed to say tOSU), but they seem to have the most obnoxious internet fans.

KG
KG

Other than the internet idiots, they’re mostly fine. They can be a bit rednecky, as Tallahassee and environs are in that part of the state, but they’re way better than your average sidewalk Florida or Miami fans.

hooks orpik
hooks orpik

Also gotta give some love for an excellent picture used at the top. I don’t think I’ve still stopped laughing yet at flashing the deuce to a beaten defender pre-end zone. Classic.

NDForever
NDForever

Hooks,

Saw in the “we don’t have Book for the game article” that you were prognosticating that we wouldn’t beat FSU 42-10. Have to give you props, you were right.

hooks orpik
hooks orpik

Ha, shows how that went, the running game was better than I expected!