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Hero of the Week

Nov. 19, 2000

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Every once in awhile, Irish head coach Bob Davie likes to check his starting quarterback’s pulse.

Freshman Matt LoVecchio exudes the confidence and patience, which is only visible in the likes of the most seasoned veterans. It is something that is hard for Davie to get use to.

“The quarterback is an unbelievable guy,” Davie said. “His personality never waivers no matter what the situation is.”

Saturday was no different. Despite the inspired play of the Scarlet Knights, LoVecchio’s performance earns him this week’s Hero of the Week honors.

He threw for 161 yards on 13 completions out of 19 attempts. Saturday’s 45-17 win registered his fifth game in which to throw for two touchdown passes.

“Matt is talented, obviously,” Davie said. “He has won a bunch of football games for us. You can see how he can run and you have seen how he can throw.”

LoVecchio supplemented his air attack by showing his speed. He forced many to take notice of his dual capacity as he ran for 79 yards. The freshman also gained another touchdown on the ground by scampering 50-plus yards before it being called back on a penalty.

“It is great coming back home and getting to play in front all of your friends and family,” the New Jersey native said. “I am even more happy that we got a big win on the road.”

LoVecchio is the first starting quarterback from New Jersey since Joe Theismann in 1968-70.

It is still hard to believe that a year ago, LoVecchio quarterbacked the likes of Bergen Catholic high school and now is in charge of 11th-ranked Notre Dame. Not only is hard for the fans to swallow, it is something which LoVecchio finds hard to swallow.

The 45-17 win over the Scarlet Knights boosts LoVecchio to his sixth-straight win as the starting quarterback.

“If I actually to stop think about how fast this has happened, then I think I might get in over my head,” LoVecchio said. “I just take the approach to prepare for the opposing team each week and go out there on Saturday and try to help this team.”

Now if that doesn’t sound like a veteran, then what does?