Brian Kelly Notebook: Wisconsin Challenge, Kevin Austin Impact, Kurt Hinish's Health

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly met with the media on Thursday to preview the Wisconsin game
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Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly met with the media on Thursday to preview the Wisconsin game. 

On the challenges that Wisconsin poses

"Wisconsin's an outstanding football team. They have played for championships. They're consistent. They're physical. They're smart. I said this on Monday, I'll say it again, they play to their traits and we'll have to do the same. They beat more talented teams because their sum is greater than their parts and that is a testament to who they are and how they're coached. They play to a system, and that's why they beat a lot of people. So, we'll have to do the same and we'll have to get them off the field. They possess the football through a very powerful running game and we are gonna have to make big plays, and they limit that. Great challenge. Concerns? Yeah, you're concerned about everything, but this is really just a great challenge for our football team."

On Kurt Hinish’s health

"There's always going to be guys that are questionable during the week that have lingering injuries from the week before. But we don't rule anybody out unless we're clear that they are not going to play. I think the only guy right now that clearly is not playing is the guys that we told you that were unavailable earlier in the week. Other than that, some of these are game-time decisions. I think each week you'll find that there's going to be some rumors and there's going to be some speculation as to some guys may be available or unavailable. I'll let you guys know if there's somebody definitely not available leading into the game, but I think there's always going to be a little bit of that from week to week."

On how Kevin Austin practiced this week after not playing well against Purdue

"Kevin works as hard as anybody that we have in our program. His work volume is always as high if not the highest of anybody that we have. He probably didn't play up to his standards. I don't know that anybody needed to remind him of that. He's a guy with a lot of pride and wants to perform at the highest level. So, you can imagine, I think everybody that follows Notre Dame football can imagine that he didn't play to the level that he has set for himself. He went back to work and practiced real hard and prepared real hard with that in mind. He wants to make an impact in this game."

On on the health of defensive end Jordan Botelho

"I think Jordan is much further along than he was last week. He didn't really have his legs on underneath him last week. He should play a much more important role in what we do defensively. You'll see him on the field, he will register many more snaps on the defensive side of the ball."

On the health of Tyler Buchner

"Buchner is improving (hamstring). We got him where we wanted him to be in terms of a full-out sprint yesterday. We'll add more to his load with the expectation of preparing him for his role at quarterback on Saturday."

On Notre Dame’s system for playing at a high level

“Let's not confuse that we need to, regardless of whether we run the ball 70 times or throw it 70 times, have attention to detail, have focus, play with grit, great attitude, and be smart. That will never change. What I was saying is that Wisconsin does that and their systems don't change. We'll change with personnel, relative to who we need to be from an offensive standpoint. We have defensively (also), but our process and how we play and what we need to do on a day-to-day basis- those traits won't change. So, if we keep those consistent, and then let our players play, we'll be pretty good but that's a process for us. It's hard and we've got some young players that are learning how to do that on the fly or getting better at it, but we're certainly not a finished product when it comes to that."

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