The fourth-ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets today as they look to improve to 6-0 on the season.
Irish Breakdown will have all the analysis, news and notes from the game. Be sure to stay locked in to this page for all the latest, and join us in the game day chat!
6:36 PM - Georgia Tech scored to make it 31-13, but the two-point conversion was stopped by safeties Houston Griffith and Kyle Hamilton. Georgia Tech recovered the onside kick and they are driving.
6:12 PM - Notre Dame takes a 31-7 lead after a touchdown run from Georgia native C'Bo Flemister.
5:45 PM - Notre Dame takes its first drive of the second half down for a touchdown to go up 24-7 after the Irish got the ball following a Daelin Hayes strip sack. The big play for the offense was a 31-yard back shoulder throw from Ian Book to Javon McKinley. Kyren Williams punched it in from four yards out two plays later.
FIRST HALF THOUGHTS
*** The Irish defense is dominating in many ways. Notre Dame held Georgia tech to just 66 yards in the first half and just 2.8 yards per play. Of course, the only points for Georgia Tech came from a 93-yard fumble return. Notre Dame's pass rush hasn't been great, but the coverage has been excellent and the defense is making a lot of key plays.
*** The downfield coverage by the secondary has been especially impressive. Georgia Tech's only positive pass plays have been short throws against the linebackers/zone.
*** Offensively, Notre Dame has been able to run the ball effectively, and the edge players are dominating in the run game. Right tackle Robert Hainsey has been especially good in the run game for Notre Dame. Inside hasn't been as good, as the Irish interior blockers have done more catching than we've seen in previous games. We aren't seeing the push that we've seen in previous games, both on vertical runs and stretch runs.
*** The red zone offense continues to be a problem, as the Irish fumbled a ball in the red zone in the first quarter (it was returned for a score) and three straight incompletions resulted in settling for a field goal on the final drive of the half.
*** Notre Dame's wideouts are performing well on intermediate and short throws (YAC), but they are getting very little separation. Quarterback Ian Book has missed some opportunities in the pass game as well. Book went 12-18 in the first half for 99 yards.
*** I've asked multiple times in recent weeks to see more creativity from OC. Tommy Rees, and we saw it again this week. We've seen an effective use of the screen game, a well-called reverse to Chris Tyree that went for 21 yards, and we've seen more two-back alignments, which I like.
*** With the inability of the veteran wideouts to get any separation downfield it would not be a bad idea to see one of the athletic freshmen in the game. I doubt we see it, but it would still be a good idea.
FIRST HALF ENDS - NOTRE DAME LEADS 17-7
Despite dominating the stat sheet, Notre Dame leads just 17-7 as the first half ends.
5:00 PM - Notre Dame had to settle for a field goal after three straight red zone passes fell incomplete. Notre Dame leads 17-7 with just under two minutes left in the half.
4:55 PM - Georgia Tech gained 10 yards on a 3rd-and-12 play because of a mistake by sophomore safety Kyle Hamilton, who didn't squeeze down on a cross route. Hamilton made up for it on 4th-and-2, blowing into the backfield and bringing down the back for a loss to give the offense possession with less than 4 minutes left in the half.
4:44 PM - Irish defense forced a quick three-and-out, with a stout 3rd-and-2 play by Justin Ademilola ending the drive. Georgia Tech ran at Ademilola, who shocked the OT at the snap and then quickly shed the block and got to the ball carrier short of the sticks.
Irish offense followed with a four-play series that ended with a punt. Despite out-gaining Georgia Tech 205-15 at this point it's just a 14-7 game.
4:34 PM - Notre Dame answers with a quick 7-play, 75-yard drive that is capped off by a 2-yard touchdown run by Williams. Irish ground attack starting to take over, and the drive was aided by a brilliant reverse call by OC Tommy Rees to freshman Chris Tyree, who went 21 yard to set up a 1st-and-Goal.
4:21 PM - On the first play of the second quarter, ND running back Kyren Williams fumbles the ball at the 10-yard line and Georgia Tech recovers it and returns it 93 yards for a touchdown to tie the game 7-7. Cornerback Zamari Walton had the return.
4:15 PM - First quarter ends with ND leading 7-0 and driving. Irish outscored Georgia Tech 128-6 in the first 15 minutes.
4:05 PM - After giving up an early third-down conversion, the Irish defense tightens up and forces a punt. The Irish defense perfectly read a 2nd-and-8 screen that went for a 5-yard loss. On third-down the Irish got no pressure, but the coverage was excellent and Nick McCloud almost came away with a pick.
3:52 PM - Notre Dame goes on a long, methodical drive to start the game to take a 7-0 lead. Notre Dame converted four third-downs on the drive, and it was capped off on a touchdown pass from Ian Book to Joe Wilkins Jr.
The red zone has been an issue for Notre Dame for much of the season, but this was a very well designed play call. The Irish ran a short smash concept on the bootleg but brought Wilkins across from the backside on a drag. When Georgia Tech overplayed the smash with Michael Mayer and Kyren Williams, it opened Wilkins up backside. Wilkins outran the cornerback across the field.
3:39 PM - Notre Dame will start with the ball.
3:12 PM - Cornerback TaRiq Bracy is back in the lineup and is working with the first team defense during pre-game.
3:09 PM - Senior Jafar Armstrong is working with the wide receivers. I expect this move to be full-time moving forward.
2:55 PM - Freshmen wide receivers Jordan Johnson and Xavier Watts both made the trip to Georgia Tech and are going through warm ups.
2:53 PM - It's a sunny, cool day with a slight breeze. Beautiful day for football.
Before the game starts, get caught up on all the pre-game analysis of this matchup:
First Glance: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets - Breaking down the Georgia Tech season results, statistical leaders and head coach.
Stacking Up: Notre Dame Offense vs. Georgia Tech - Breaking down how the Notre Dame offense stacks up on paper against the Georgia Tech defense.
Stacking Up: Notre Dame Defense vs. Georgia Tech - Breaking down how the Notre Dame defense stacks up on paper against the Georgia Tech offense.
Midweek Musings - Matchups to watch, biggest concerns for the Irish in this contest, stats to keep an eye on and players that must step up to ensure victory.
Podcast: Notre Dame vs. Georgia Tech Preview - Publisher Bryan Driskell and football analyst Vince DeDario preview the Notre Dame vs. Georgia Tech matchup.
Podcast: Georgia Tech Insider - Football analyst Vince DeDario interviews Kelly Quinlan of JacketsOnline.com
Game Prediction: Notre Dame vs. Georgia Tech - The Irish Breakdown staff make their picks for the Irish/Yellow Jacket matchup.
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