Nov. 22, 1999
Notre Dame Fighting Irish (5-6) at No. 25 (ESPN/USA Today)Stanford Cardinal (7-3)
The Date and Time: Saturday, November 27, 1999, at 5:00 p.m. PST.
The Site: Stanford Stadium (85,500 capacity, natural grass) in Stanford, Calif.
The Tickets: Tickets are still available, with 119 of the previous 137 games involving Notre Dame being sellouts, including the first 10 games of 1998 and the first 11 in 1999.
The TV Plans: ABC Sports national telecast with Keith Jackson (play by play), Dan Fouts (analysis) and Todd Harris (sideline).
The Radio Plans: For the 32nd consecutive season, all Notre Dame football games are broadcast nationally on radio by Mutual/Westwood One with Tony Roberts (play by play) and Tom Pagna (game analysis) and Paul Hornung (pregame/halftime analysis). The Mutual Network includes more than 200 stations. A live broadcast from the Notre Dame student radio station, WVFI, is available through the Notre Dame athletic department web site at www.und.com.
Websites: Notre Dame (www.und.com), Stanford (www.gostanford.com).
The Injury Update
(as of Nov. 21)
|Junior DE Grant Irons||Cracked left fibula vs. Pittsburgh|
|(also will undergo arthoscopic surgery on left knee this week)|
|Sophomore RT Sean Mahan||Sprained right shoulder vs. BC|
|Senior LG Jim Jones||Sprained arch vs. Pittsburgh (dnp vs. BC)|
|Junior RT John Teasdale||Sprained arch vs. Pittsburgh (dnp vs. BC)|
|Freshman CB Albert Poree||Arthroscopic knee surgery, 11/16 (dnp last 4 games)|
|Sophomore LT Jordan Black||Torn right MCL vs. Tennessee (dnp vs. Pitt, BC)|
|Senior DE Jason Ching||Arthroscopic knee surgery, 11/5 (dnp vs. BC)|
|Junior FB Jason Murray||Shoulder surgery, 9/17|
|Sophomore FB Mike McNair||Sprained arch prior to Michigan game|
|Sophomore TB Terrance Howard||Hamstring vs. Tennessee (dnp vs. Pitt, BC)|
|Freshman CB Jason Beckstrom||Ankle sprain in practice, 11/11 (dnp vs. Pitt, BC)|
THE KEY NOTES
WHAT A DIFFERENCE A YEAR MAKES: Notre Dame’s strength of schedule has jumped from 82nd in 1998 to the nation’s fourth-toughest in ’99, including six ranked opponents.
A ROSEY SERIES: In a season commemorating the 75th anniversary of The Four Horsemen, Notre Dame and Stanford will meet for the 14th time in a series that began with the 1925 Rose Bowl matchup.
LAST HURRAH: Jarious will put the final touches on one of the top seasons and careers in the storied history of Notre Dame quarterbacks.
If Notre Dame Wins:
? The Irish will win for the fifth time in their last six games vs. Pac-10 teams.
? The Irish will end a six-game losing streak in games away from home.
If Stanford Wins:
? The Irish will lose for the ninth time in the last 14 games overall.
? The Irish will lose for the seventh straight time away from home.
? The Cardinal will win eight games in a season for the first time since 1992.
Here’s where Notre Dame has stood in the polls during the ’99 season:
|Date||Associated Press||USA Today/ESPN|
|Aug. 29||16th||no new poll|
The ’99 campaign marks the 13th straight year Notre Dame began the season ranked somewhere in the Associated Press preseason poll. Here’s where Notre Dame was ranked in the preseason and final AP polls during the previous 12 seasons:
RECAPPING LAST WEEK’S BOSTON COLLEGE GAME
? The Eagles held on for a 31-29 victory at Notre Dame Stadium, behind the strong play of Tim Hasselbeck (20 for 30 passing, 272 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INTs, 15 rushes for a net of 60 yards). Bryan Arndt’s five catches for 80 yards (TD) led 10 BC players with receptions while both of Jamal Burke’s catches yielded TDs. Jarious Jackson continued his record-setting season for the Irish, completing 19 of 34 passes for 283 yards, one TD and two INTs. Tony Fisher (14 for 70) led the Notre Dame rushing attack while David Givens made five catches for 48. The Irish ground game managed just 95 yards on 32 rushes while BC held a 442-378 edge in total offense.
? The Irish jumped out to a 14-0 lead, behind Fisher’s 5-yard run and an 11-yard scamper by Julius Jones. BC then turned a Jackson interception into a 53-yard TD drive (scoring on Arndt’s 27-yard catch) and tied the game in the second quarter on a 22-yard pass play to Burke. John Matich converted a 23-yard field goal late in the quarter but ND’s Jim Sanson matched him with a 44-yarder on the final play of the first half. Hasselback’s one-yard sneak pushed BC to a 24-17 lead in the third quarter and the Eagles added a 34-yard TD catch by Burke with 12:39 left to play. With time slipping away, the Irish capped a 10-play, 62-yard drive with a nine-yard TD catch by Fisher but Sanson’s PAT grazed off a BC player before smacking off the left upright, leaving the score at 31-23. BC then went three-and-out and Jones took the ensuing punt, slanted to the left sideline and raced into the end zone for a 67-yard return. Jackson then threw high over Joey Getrerall on the two-point try. The Irish still got the ball back at the ND 27-yard line, with 2:05 to play. Two plays later, Pedro Cirino picked off a Jackson pass and BC ran out the clock for the win.
NOTRE DAME FOOTBALL “CENTURY OF GREATNESS” MOMENTS
? Notre Dame’s 1988 football team claimed a unanimous No. 1 ranking following that season, thanks to a 12-0 record and a victory over third-rated West Virginia in the Fiesta Bowl. Now, 11 years later, that same Irish team has earned yet another number-one finish. Notre Dame’s 31-30 triumph over top-rated Miami in ’88 has been voted the greatest moment in the last century of Irish football, as part of the Century of Greatness program that has run throughout the ’99 Notre Dame season. That midseason victory in ’88 over the ‘Canes ended up atop the list – and was followed, in order, by the Irish comeback to defeat Houston in the ’79 Cotton Bowl (second), Notre Dame’s ’93 win against top-rated Florida State (third), the Irish win over Army in ’28 in the “Win One for the Gipper” game (fourth) and Notre Dame’s ’77 win over USC that featured a switch to green jerseys (fifth).
? The vote totals result from balloting at area Meijer stores and on Notre Dame’s athletic web site (www.und.com) throughout August – and from ballots distributed at Notre Dame’s season-opening football game against Kansas. The Century of Greatness program has been a joint promotional effort of the University of Notre Dame, Host Communications and University Netcasting, with Meijer and Coke as the title sponsors. Coke has been distributing a series of trading cards throughout the season in 12-packs sold at area Meijer stores. The top 20 moments were featured in a special 24-page insert in the Notre Dame-Boston College game program (Nov. 20) and there were special ceremonies at that game recognizing the vote totals. Host Communications has produced a 45-minute video highlighting the top 20 moments, available at area Meijer stores, the Notre Dame Bookstore and other outlets.
? Here’s the other top 20 moments: 6. 1935 – Notre Dame knocks off Ohio State in “Game of the Century”, 7. 1989 – Raghib Ismail returns two kickoffs for TDs as Irish beat #2 Michigan, 8. 1924 – Grantland Rice christens Four Horsemen after 13-7 win over Army, 9. 1966 – Irish and Michigan State end epic matchup in 10-10 ties, 10. 1973 – Notre Dame prevails 24-23 in Sugar Bowl game against No. 1 Alabama, 11. 1957 – Notre Dame’s 7-0 win ends Oklahoma’s record 47-game win streak, 12. 1987 – Tim Brown returns two punts for TDs as Irish beat Michigan State, 13. 1992 – Mirer throws for two-point conversion to beat Penn State in the snow, 14. 1913 – Rockne and Dorais popularize forward pass in 35-13 Irish win at Army, 15. 1946 – Notre Dame and Army battle to 0-0 tie at Yankee Stadium, 16. 1977 – Notre Dame knocks off top-rated Texas in Cotton Bowl to claim No. 1 spot, 17. 1988 – Irish defeat No. 3 West Virginia 34-21 in Fiesta Bowl to clinch national title, 18. 1974 – Notre Dame holds off No. 1 Alabama in Orange Bowl in Ara’s last game, 19. 1980 – Oliver’s 51-yard field goal as time expires beats Michigan, 20. 1991 – Bettis’ second-half runs enable Irish to beat Florida in Sugar Bowl.
The Host Football Review
Host Communications offers a two-hour delayed replay of each Notre Dame home game. The replays are available in many major markets, via over-the-air syndication, including WNDU-TV in South Bend and TCI Cable (channel 3).
The Davie Show
Bob Davie’s half-hour, weekly television show is syndicated nationally by Host Communications, produced by Golden Dome Productions and hosted by Jeff Jeffers. The show is carried by WNDU-TV in the South Bend market on the following Saturday and on FoxSports-Chicago on Monday afternoon.
RADIO CALL-IN SHOW
The 1999 football season marks the debut of The Bob Davie Radio Show on WNDV-AM (1490) and WNDV-FM (92.9). The show has a call-in format and airs Monday nights during the season from 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. EST. WNDU-TV sports director Jeff Jeffers and WNDV’s Jeremy Gray serve as the hosts for the show.
TOUGHER SLATE FOR IRISH IN 1999
? Notre Dame’s strength of schedule took a huge jump from the 1998 to 1999 seasons, with the ’99 Irish opponents already winning 17 more games (69) than the 1998 opponents (52).
? According to the official NCAA formula, which factors games vs. Division I-A teams while omitting games vs. ND, the Irish strength of schedule in ’98 ranked just 82nd (.460, 52-61) while the current 1999 schedule ranks fourth-toughest at .611 (69-44).
? Notre Dame faced just one ranked opponent (at game time) during the 1998 season, in the opener vs. Michigan. By comparison, the Irish have faced six ranked teams in 1999: Michigan, Purdue, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Boston College and Stanford (Michigan State entered the polls after beating the Irish and could finish in the top 10).
KEEPING UP WITH THE JONESES
? Notre Dame freshman TB Julius Jones (Big Stone Gap, Va.) and his brother Thomas Jones, a senior TB at Virginia, have combined for nearly 1,600 all-purpose yards during the past four weeks (1,559). The elder Jones brother currently ranks third in the nation with 170.70 rushing yards per game (334 rushes for 1,798 yards, 15 TDs and 5.4 per rush) while ranking second in all-purpose yards, with 186.73 per game (he also has 239 receiving yards and 17 punt return yards).
? Julius Jones has totaled 703 all-purpose yards during the past four games (170-plus in every game), with 183 versus Navy (19 rushes for 146, 1 catch for 9, 2 punt returns for 5, 1 kick return for 23),176 at Tennessee (12 rushes for 46, 1 catch for 32, 1 PR for 5, 4 KR for 93), 174 at Pittsburgh (5 rushes for 10, 1 PR for 1, 7 KRs for 163) and 170 vs. BC (4 rushes for 2, 4 kick returns for 97, 2 punt returns for 71).
? Thomas Jones has racked up 856 yards in his last four games, including back-to-back games versus top-10 teams. He had 207 yards versus top-ranked Florida State (26 rushes for 164 and a TD, 6 catches for 26, 2 PR for 17), 215 versus ninth-ranked Georgia Tech (39 rushes for 213 and 2 TDs, 1 catch for 2), 331 at Buffalo (32 rushes for 221, 2 catches for 110, including an 84-yard scoring play) and 103 vs. Maryland (28 rushes for 91, 2 catches for 12).
? With 11 of 12 regular-season games in the books, Notre Dame already has broken the team record for total passing yards (was 2,527 in 11 games during 1970, record total of 2,656 in ’99).
? On a per-game basis, the 1999 Irish offense stacks up with the record-setting 1970 aerial game, with 28.2 pass attempts/gm (28.3 in ’70), 16.5 completions/gm (16.2 in ’70) and 241.5 passing yards/gm (252.7 in ’70). The Irish own a .589 pass completion pct. (the record of .638 was set in ’93) while averaging 8.6 yards/pass att. (record of 10.0 in ’93) and 14.7 yards per completion (record of 17.5 in ’64).
? Jarious Jackson already has set some Irish single-season records and could break more in the Stanford game: passing attempts (he has 297, on pace for 324, record is 298), completions (he has 175, record is 182), completion pct. (.589, record is .616), passing yards (2,586, already surpassed old record of 2,429) and TD passes (15, record is 19). On a per-game basis, Jackson also could be in the running to set records for pass attempts/gm (27.0, record is 28.1), completions/gm (15.9, 16.6), passing yards/gm (235.1, 242.9), passing yards per attempt (8.7, 10.1) and passing yards per completion (14.8, 18.1).
THE THREE KEYS
Irish head coach Bob Davie has cited the following areas as keys to the success of the Irish during the past two seasons: turnover margin, “red-zone” efficiency and success in close games. Notre Dame was +7 in turnover margin during the 1998 season but is -3 in ’99. The Irish scored on 91.1 percent of their red-zone chances in ’98 while averaging 4.9 points per red-zone chance (those numbers are down to 73.3 percent, 3.9 points per chance in ’99). The Irish went 4-1 in 1998 in games decided by 1-7 points (they are 3-3 so far in 1999 close games).
? Notre Dame leads the all-time series versus Stanford (9-4-0), including a 5-2 mark at Notre Dame Stadium and a 3-2 record in games played at Stanford Stadium.
? Notre Dame and Stanford met for the first time in the 1925 Rose Bowl, with the famed Four Horsemen backfield leading Notre Dame to a 27-10 win and the national championship that seasaon, with a special Four Horsemen family reunion held at Notre Dame during the Oct. 30 Notre Dame-Navy game.
? The series then included one game in the 1940s and two in the ’60s. This year’s game will represent the 10th meeting between the schools in the last 12 years (no games in ’95 or ’96), with the series scheduled to continue through 2008.
? At least one of the teams was ranked in the AP poll in each of the previous 10 games in the series, with the 1992 matchup representing the last time where both teams were ranked (No. 19 Stanford won 33-16 at seventh-ranked Notre Dame).
? The Irish had been ranked by the AP in eight straight games of the series before entering the 1997 game unranked.
? Stanford has never won consecutive games versus Notre Dame.
RECAPPING NOTRE DAME’S 1998 WIN OVER STANFORD
Senior QB Jarious Jackson led a huge first half for the Irish, while claiming a 28-3 halftime lead en route to a 35-17 Irish win. Jackson completed 11 of 15 passes overall for 163 yards and rushed 18 times for 100 yards and three TDs (most by an Irish QB since ’89 and ’56, respectively). Senior TB Autry Denson tacked on 88 rushing yards while junior FB Jamie Spencer had 80. Senior SE Malcolm Johnson caught seven passes for 113 yards. The Cardinal scored both of its touchdowns in the final nine minutes.
THE CLOSE GAMES AND NOT-SO-CLOSE GAMES
? Since the series resumed in 1988, the last 10 games between Notre Dame and Stanford have been decided by an average of 17.2 points, including a pair of 28-point wins by the Irish (in ’88 and ’93).
? Beginning with the 1988 matchup, the only game decided by fewer than six points was Stanford’s 36-31 upset of the top-ranked Irish in 1990 (total of nine games in that span).
? Second-year Notre Dame offensive line coach Dave Borbely spent the previous three seasons (1995-97) at Stanford in the same capacity, where he coached with six current members of the Stanford staff: head coach Tyrone Willingham, defensive coordinator Kent Baer, OL coach Chuck Moller, WR coach Mose Rison, DT coach Dave Tipton and DE coach Phil Zacharias.
? Borberly also coached the OL at Rice from 1986-88, with Willingham coaching the Rice WRs and special teams during those seasons.
? Rison was on the same coaching staff at Navy during the late 1980s with both current Notre Dame coordinators. Rison coached Navy’s WRs and special teams during the 1988-89 season while current Irish defensive coordinator Greg Mattison was the Middies DL coach in 1988. Current Irish offensive coordinator Kevin Rogers coached the Navy RBs in 1988 and the QBs in ’89.
? Trent Walters, father of Stanford senior flanker Troy Walters, coached the secondary at Texas A&M from 1991-93 during Bob Davie’s stint there as defensive coordinator. Walters now is the Minnesota Vikings’ outside linebacker coach.
? The winner of the Notre Dame-Stanford series receives The Legends Trophy, a combination of Irish crystal and California redwood. The trophy was presented for the first time in 1989 by the Notre Dame Club of the San Francisco Bay Area.
FRIEND OR FOE?
? Notre Dame’s 1999 roster includes nine California natives: junior FL Joey Getherall (Hacienda Heights/Bishop Amat), sophomore FB Mike McNair (Corona del Mar/Mater Dei HS), senior C John Merandi (Blue Jay/Rim of the World HS), junior OT Kurt Vollers (Whittier/Servite HS), sophomore CB Shane Walton (San Diego/Bishops HS) and senior DT Brad Williams (Orange/Mater Dei HS).
? The Notre Dame roster includes players from 30 states while the Stanford roster includes 26 California natives and players from 26 other states (plus Canada). Several Notre Dame and Stanford players hail from the same hometown and/or high school, among them:
? Notre Dame freshman DB Gerome Sapp and Stanford freshman RB Justin Faust both hail from Arlington, Texas, and were teammates at Lamar HS.
? Irish freshman RB Courtney Watson and Stanford junior OT Ben Garrison both are natives of Sarasota, Fla., and are products of Riverview HS.
? Notre Dame senior DL Brad Williams (Mater Dei HS) and Stanford senior P Che Holloway (Lutheran HS) each hail from Orange, Calif.
? Irish senior SS A’Jani Sanders (North Brook HS) hails from Houston, Texas, as do four Stanford players: freshman OL Mike Holman (Clear Lake HS), senior CB Frank Primus (Klein Forest HS), sophomore FS Jason White (Nimitz HS) and senior WR Jason Willock (Strake Jesuit HS).
? Notre Dame senior PK Jim Sanson (St. Mary’s HS) and Stanford sophomore OG Brad Selby both are natives of Scottsdale, Ariz.
? Irish senior DE Jason Ching and Stanford junior WR Tafiti Uso were teammates at Punahou HS in Honolulu, Hawaii.
? Irish sophomore CB Shane Walton (Bishop’s HS) and Stanford junior OLB Anthony Gabriel (Morse HS) both hail from San Diego, Calif.
RECORD-SETTERS IN THE NOTRE DAME-STANFORD SERIES
? Angelo Bertelli’s four TD passes and 10 consecutive pass completions versus Stanford in 1942 both are tied for first in the Notre Dame record book.
? The following rank second in the Irish record book and came versus Stanford: Clint Johnson’s 100-yard kickoff return in 1993, and Elmer Layden’s 80-yard punt return in the 1925 Rose Bowl. Layden also returned an interception 78 yards in that game, which still ranks as the 11th-longest interception return in Irish football history.
? Paul Failla and Derrick Mayes hooked up on an 80-yard pass versus Stanford in 1993, with that pass play standing tied for sixth-longest in Irish history.
STANFORD HOLDS 13 IRISH OPPONENT RECORDS
? Stanford players hold nine different Notre Dame opponent records while the Cardinal still maintains four Irish opponent team records.
? Steve Smith set still-standing Irish opponent records in 1989 for single-game pass attempts (68, also a Stanford record), completions (39) and total offense attempts (68).
? Jim Price shares the Irish opponent record for receptions in a game, latching onto 14 in that 1989 meeting (also tied for the Stanford record).
? Steve Stenstrom (1991-94) occupies five Irish opponent records for career statistics: pass attempts (163), completions (100) and yards (1,020) and total offense attempts (172) and yards (928). His 59 pass attempts in 1994 rank third in Stanford history.
? Three different Stanford teams maintain records for Irish opponents: the 1989 squad for pass attempts (68, Stanford record) and completions (39), the ’94 team for total offense attempts (95), and the ’97 squad for first downs (34).
? Tommy Vardell shares the Stanford record for rushing TDs in a game, with four versus Notre Dame in 1990.
All-Time Series: Notre Dame leads 9-4.
At Notre Dame Stadium: ND leads 5-2.
At Stanford Stadium: ND leads 3-2.
Current Streak: 1, by ND (’98).
RB – Indicates game played at the Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.)
* – Indicates Notre Dame home games. Rankings indicate AP Ranking at time of game.
VS. RECENT STANFORD QUARTERBACKS
Here’s how the Irish defense has fared against the passing efforts of Stanford quarterbacks since the series was renewed in 1988 (completions-attempts-yards):
|’88||Scott Palumbis||16-23-158, 1 TD|
|Brian Johnson||7-18-57, 1 INT|
|’89||Steve Smith||39-68-282, 1 TD, 3 INT|
|’91||Jason Palumbis||18-27-153, 1 INT|
|’92||Steve Stenstrom||21-32-215, 2 TDs|
|’93||S. Stenstrom||34-46-321, 1 TD, 1 INT|
|’94||Steve Stenstrom||37-59-360, 2 TDs|
|’98||Todd Husak||25-41-226, 1 TD|
Smith’s 68 attempts and 39 completions in ’89 represent single-game records vs. ND while Stenstrom’s 100 career completions and 1,020 career passing yards represent career individual highs vs. the Irish.
Notre Dame faced teams from eight different conferences/affiliations during the 1998 season and is scheduled to face teams from six different leagues in 1999, including three each from the Big Ten and the Pac-10, two each from the Big 12 and the BIG EAST, plus Tennessee (Southeastern) and Navy (independent).
Notre Dame vs. PAC-10 TEAMS
? Notre Dame has won nearly 67 percent of its games versus Pacific-10 Conference opponents, with a winning series record versus each of the Pac-10 teams that the Irish have played and an overall mark of 64-31-6 (.663) in 101 games against Pac-10 schools-including the 1998 win over Stanford, the ’98 and ’99 wins over Arizona State and the ’99 win over USC. More than 70 percent of those games (70) have come versus USC (39-26-5) while another 13 have come against Stanford (9-4-0).
? Notre Dame has played a handful of games vs. California (4-0), Washington (4-0), Arizona (2-1), Oregon (1-0-1) and UCLA (2-0). Notre Dame and ASU met for the first time in 1998, while the Irish still have yet to face Oregon State or Washington State. Arizona State became the 130th different opponent faced by the Notre Dame football program during its 111-year history.
? The Irish won at Washington in ’95 (29-21) and beat the Huskies at Notre Dame Stadium in ’96 (54-20), with the only other previous games in that series coming in ’48 and ’49. The most recent games vs. other Pac-10 teams are: a 16-13 home loss to Arizona in ’82, a 41-8 home win over California in ’67, a 13-13 tie at Oregon in ’82 and a 24-0 home win over UCLA in ’64.
? Notre Dame is 10-4-1 (.700) in its last 15 games vs. Pac-10 schools (3-3-1 vs. USC, 3-1 vs. Stanford, 2-0 vs. Washington, 2-0 vs. ASU), beginning with a 1992 victory over USC.
RECAPPING NOTRE DAME’S LAST TRIP TO STANFORD
Stanford took command in the third quarter en route to an Irish opponent record 34 first downs and a 33-15 win at Stanford Stadium (Oct. 4, 1997). Autry Denson had 106 yards on 15 first-half carries but was limited to 10 yards on 10 rushes in the second half. A missed extra point by Jim Sanson resulted in a 10-9 lead for Stanford at halftime, highlighted by Mike Mitchell’s 15-yard TD run. Mitchell (72 yards) and Anthony Bookman (124) erupted for a combined 196 second-half rushing yards. Bookman had just 18 rushing yards in the first half but finished with an average of over 10 yards per rush (142, on 14 attempts). Mitchell had 63 first-half rushing yards and 135 total on 29 carries. Mitchell’s three-yard run late in the third quarter gave the Cardinal a 17-9 lead and Bookman scored 2:41 later, on a 58-yard sprint. A 27-yard TD pass from Ron Powlus to Bobby Brown kept the Irish close but Bookman scored again, from four yards, and Kailee Wong capped the scoring by sacking Powlus for a safety. Stanford held major edges in offensive plays (91-56), possession (36:32-23:28), net yards (514-298) and third-down efficiency (11-of-17, to 2-of-9). Stanford’s Chad Hutchinson completed 26 of 38 passes for 192 yards.
THE 1999 NCAA STATS
Updated 1999 NCAA stat rankings for Notre Dame and Stanford (top 50 for team ranks):
|Rushing Offense||27th at 175.7||41st at 160.3|
|Passing Offense||34th at 241.5||11th at 306.3|
|Total Offense||21st at 417.55||7th at 466.60|
|Scoring Offense||43rd at 28.3||9th at 36.9|
|Rushing Defense, yards||147.2||50th at 138.6|
|Pass Efficiency Defense||124.6 rating pts||129.5 rating pts|
|Punt Returns||19th at 12.4||7.2|
|Kickoff Returns||24th at 22.8||33rd at 22.0|
|Turnover Margin||-0.27/gm (-3 overall)||10th at +0.90 (+9 overall)|
|Passing Efficiency||Jarious Jackson||Todd Husak|
|14th at 140.0 rating pts||15th at 139.6|
|Total Offense||Jarious Jackson||Todd Husak|
|17th at 275.09||20th at 261.56|
|Receptions Per Game||Troy Walters|
|18th at 6.60|
|43rd at 5.20|
|Receiving Yards Per Game||Troy Walters|
|2nd at 127.30|
|43rd at 76.80|
|8th at 0.60|
|Punt Returns||Julius Jones|
|20th at 12.86|
|Kickoff Returns||Julius Jones||Ryan Wells|
|41st at 22.75||4that 30.70|
|All-Purpose Runners||Troy Walters|
|9th at 165.00|
|Field Goals||Mike Biselli|
|50th at 1.00|
|35th at 7.50|
THEY SHALL RETURN
? During the past 14 seasons (’86-’99), Notre Dame has produced 50 TDs over the course of 44 games via kickoff, punt and interception returns-including Julius Jones’ 67-yard punt return this season vs. Boston College, A’Jani Sanders’ pair of INTs vs. ASU (in ’98 and ’99), Bobbie Howard’s INT vs. LSU (in ’98) and Deveron Harper’s INT in the ’99 opener vs. Kansas. (Those numbers don’t include several fumble returns for TDs, with recent ones coming from Deke Cooper at Michigan State in ’98, Lamont Bryant vs. LSU in ’98 and Anthony Denman vs. KU in ’99).
? Notre Dame’s opponents in the past 14 seasons have combined for just nine total returns for touchdowns (on kicks, punts or interceptions).
? Since the start of ’86, the Irish have produced their most returns vs. Pittsburgh (seven), with four each vs. Air Force, Michigan, Michigan State and Purdue.
? The 50 returns have come from 28 players, including nine by Allen Rossum (an NCAA record), six by Raghib Ismail, five by Tim Brown and three by Ricky Watters.
? Despite totaling 30 TD returns on kickoffs and punts during the past 14 seasons, Notre Dame is in the midst of a kick-return-for-TD drought.
? The Irish have not returned a kickoff for a touchdown in the last 29 games, since Allen Rossum returned the opening kick 93 yards for a score vs. Pittsburgh on Oct. 11, 1997 (Jarious Jackson later had a more unconventional return for a TD in that game, scoring from 40 yards on an onside kick).
? Prior to Julius Jones’ 67-yarder vs. Boston College, the Irish had gone 36 games since their previous punt return for a TD, stretching back to the Nov. 16, 1996, game vs. Pittsburgh that produced three Irish punt return TDs (two by Rossum, covering 83 and 55 yards, the last by Autry Denson for 74 yards).
WINS AND LOSSES
Notre Dame is averaging 263.4 rushing yards per game (5.2 per rush) in its five wins this season and just 103.0 in its six losses (2.8 per rush). Other noteworthy comparisons from 1999 wins and losses include: Jarious Jackson’s rushing yards (379 total in the five wins, 61 in the six losses), turnover ratio (+7 in wins, -10 in losses), third-down conversion pct. (.480, .377), first-quarter scoring (+20, -3) and third-quarter scoring (+32, -28).
OFFENSIVE LINE FACES MORE CHALLENGES
The ND offensive line-which must overcome the injuries to three starters-has met the challenge at times during the 1999 season of helping ignite the offense, by playing its role in a win over Oklahoma that included 284 rushing yards and 566 yards of total offense. A quick glance at some comparative statistics show that the ’99 line has faced a different challenge than the veteran ’98 unit:
|’98 after 11 games (reg.-season total)||’99 after 11 games|
|Sacks Allowed||9 for 45 yards||32 for 210 yards|
|OL Starters Career Starts||107||39|
|Top Career Rusher||Autry Denson, 4318 yds||Jarious Jackson, 867 yds|
|Top Rusher (yards/gm)||Autry Denson, 106.9||Tony Fisher, 61.5|
The arrival of first-year offensive coordinator Kevin Rogers has left its mark on the 1999 season statistics, as the passing game has become a bigger part of the Irish offense while the Irish have racked up more points in the first quarter than in 1998:
|’98 after 11 games (reg.-season total)||’99 after 11 games|
|Rushing First Downs||118||94|
|Passing First Downs||85||118|
|Total First Downs||217||223|
|Pct. of First Downs Passing||39.2 pct.||52.9 pct.|
|First-Quarter Scoring||61-58, plus 3||61-44, plus 17|
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT
A comparison of Notre Dame’s stats through the first 11 games of 1998 (when the Irish were 9-2) and 1999 indicate several areas that are in need of improvement:
|’98 after 11 games (reg.-season total)||’99 after 11 games|
|Points Allowed Per Game||19.4||26.5|
|Yards Allowed Per Game||347.2||375.6|
|Third-Quarter Scoring||94-26, plus 68||84-80, plus 4|
IRISH FACE 33 TEAMS IN 1990s
Recent opponent Oklahoma became the 33rd different team faced by the Notre Dame football team in the 1990s:
? Notre Dame’s opponents during the 1990 season included several familiar teams: Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue, Stanford, Air Force, Miami, Pittsburgh, Navy, Tennessee, Penn State, USC and Colorado.
? The 1991 opponents included Indiana, Hawaii and Florida while the 1992 Irish faced Northwestern, BYU, Boston College and Texas A&M. Notre Dame then added Florida State in 1993 before facing Texas, Ohio State, Washington and Army in 1995.
? The most recent teams added to Notre Dame’s list of opponents in the 1990s include: Vanderbilt and Rutgers (1996), Georgia Tech, LSU and West Virginia (’97), Arizona State and Baylor (’98) and Kansas and Oklahoma (’99).
THE JJ CONNECTION
Players with the initials “JJ” have had a particular impact for the Irish in 1999, especially in the comeback win over Navy:
? Jarious Jackson – record-setting signalcaller who has ranked as high as third nationally in passing efficiency, has engineered several Irish comeback efforts in 1999 season, including thrilling wins over USC and Navy.
? Julius Jones – rookie tailback who ran for 146 yards vs. Navy (most by an Irish rookie since 1975) on the same day that his brother Thomas took over the NCAA rushing lead with a 164-yard rushing day versus top-ranked Florida State.
? Jay Johnson – senior receiver who caught game-winning TD pass from 16 yards out versus Navy with 0:36 left to play. Two of his first three catches in 1999 went for TDs (he also caught a 31-yarder in the win over Arizona State).
? Jim Jones – key cog in young offensive line, starting first 10 games at left guard before suffering arch injury in Pittsburgh game.
? Jackson (Tupelo HS) and Johnson (Starkville HS) are the only Mississippi natives on the Notre Dame roster and faced each other during their high school careers.
HOLDING ONTO THE BALL
? The Notre Dame offense totaled no turnovers versus both Oklahoma and Arizona State, marking the first time that an Irish team had gone back-to-back games without a turnover since 1993. Taking care of the ball was a hallmark of that talented 1993 squad, which had six games without a turnover, including the second and third games of the season (vs. Michigan and Michigan State) and a four-game streak of no turnovers later in the season (vs. BYU, USC, Navy and Florida State).
? The no-turnover stretch spanned 32 drives by the Irish offense and 151 plays from scrimmage (not including punts and field goal attempts).
? Notre Dame and its ’99 opponents have similar “red-zone’ success, with the Irish totaling 182 red-zone points (converting 31-of-45 chances, .733) while the opponents have combined for a lower red-zone point total of 168 (35-of-40, .875). Despite a conversion edge for the opponents, the Notre Dame “bend-but-don’t-break” defense has allowed just 20 red-zone touchdowns (in 40 opponent chances) while the Irish offense has cashed in 26 TDs after crossing the opponent’s 20-yard line (in 45 chances).
? Including the drive at Purdue that was halted when time ran out, Notre Dame has scored on just 22 of its last 35 red-zone chances (18 TDs, four FGs, four turnovers, six missed/blocked FGs, two failed fourth downs and one time-expired).
? Despite scoring seven TDs in the ’99 opening win over Kansas, Notre Dame ventured into the “red zone” just three times (two defensive TDs, three long runs from scrimmage). The Irish scored two TDs and had a FG blocked in red zone chances vs. KU, which marched inside the Irish 20 just once (TD). The Irish scored TDs on all three red-zone chances at Michigan while UM had four FGs and two TDs in seven chances (missed FG). Notre Dame’s five chances at Purdue yielded three TDs, one FG and the final drive where time expired (Purdue cashed in all four chances, with two TDs and two FGs).
? Michigan State was 4-for-4 in the red zone (TD, 3 FGs) while the Irish had a TD, FG, one INT and two fumbles on five chances. Oklahoma turned both of its red-zone chances into passing TDs while the Irish had three rushing TDs, one passing TD and two missed FGs.
? Due to an assortment of big plays and an INT returned for a TD, the Irish had just three red-zone chances vs. ASU (rush TD, pass TD, missed FG). ASU had four chances, with two TDs , a FG and a missed FG. The Irish were 5-for-7 in the red zone vs. USC (2 FGs, 3 TDs, missed FG, turnover) while USC was 3-for-3 (2 TDs, FG). Notre Dame had two TDs and a missed FG in the red zone vs. Navy, which had a TD, FG and turnover in three chances.
? At Tennessee, the Irish had two TDs, a FG miss and a failed fourth down on red-zone chances (UT had three TDs and was 1-2 on FGs). The Irish had a TD, FG and failed fourth down in three red-zone chances vs. Pitt (Pitt had three TDs and three FGs in six chances). The Irish scored TDs on all three red-zone chances vs. BC, which had a FG and TD in its two chances (the Eagles scored three TDs on pass plays from outside the 20-yard line).
? Notre Dame in ’98 came away with points in 41 of 45 red-zone chances (91.1 percent)-including TDs on 71 percent-while opponents posted points on just 72 percent of their chances (barely over half of the opposing chances, 22 of 43, produced TDs).
? The Irish converted nearly 20 percent more of their red-zone chances than their ’98 opponents (.911-.721) and were +69 in red-zone points (219-150).
|NOTRE DAME IN ’99||Category||’99 OPPONENTS|
|.578 (26/45)||TD Pct.||.500 (20/40)|
|176||Total Points (TD-6, FG-3)||159|
|.667 (33/45)||Scoring Pct.||.868 (35/40)|
1999 Notre Dame Opponent UPDATE
Below is a look at Notre Dame opponents’ recent results and upcoming games. Since ’77, when the NCAA started rating strength of schedule, Notre Dame’s schedule has been rated the most difficult five times in the last 21 years (’78, ’85, ’87, ’89 and ’95), with the ’99 schedule ranking fourth-toughest in the nation (as of Nov. 22), with a .611 opponent winning pct. (69-44) according to the NCAA formula (Alabama is first, at 68-31/.687). The NCAA formula compiles games vs. Division I-A schools and omits the results vs. Notre Dame.
|Opponent||’99 Record||Nov. 20||Nov. 27|
|Kansas||5-7||W, Iowa State, 31-28||End Regular Season|
|Michigan||9-2||W, Ohio State, 24-17||End Regular Season|
|Purdue||7-4||W, at Indiana, 30-24||End Regular Season|
|Michigan State||9-2||W, Penn State, 35-28||End Regular Season|
|Oklahoma||6-4||L, at Texas Tech, 28-38||Oklahoma State|
|USC||5-6||W, UCLA, 17-7||La. Tech (Nov. 26)|
|Navy||4-7||L, at Hawaii, 41-48||Army (Dec. 4, Phila.)|
|Tennessee||8-2||W, at Kentucky, 56-21||Vanderbilt|
|Pittsburgh||5-5||Idle||at West Virginia|
|Boston College||8-2||W, at Notre Dame, 31-29||Virginia Tech (Nov. 26)|
|Stanford||7-3||W, California, 31-13||Notre Dame|
1999 Opponents’ Combined Record (not including ND games): 72-44 (.621)
The Head Coach
Third-year Irish head coach Bob Davie owns a 21-15 (.583) career record at Notre Dame. Davie was one of 10 finalists for the 1998 Walter Camp Foundation/Street and Smith’s Coach of the Year Award. His 1997 squad beat No. 11 LSU and No. 22 West Virginia in ’97 to mark the first time a Notre Dame team beat ranked foes on consecutive weeks since November ’92 while the ’98 opening win over No. 5 and defending national champion Michigan gave him a 3-4 record vs. ranked opponents (now 4-5). The ’99 season marks Davie’s sixth year at Notre Dame overall, after serving as defensive coordinator and inside linebacker coach from 1994-96. He coached nine seasons at Texas A&M (’85-’93), two at Tulane (’83-’84), four at Pittsburgh (’77, ’80-’82) and two at Arizona (’78-’79), spending both years at Tulane as defensive coordinator and the last five at Texas A&M in that role.
COACHING IN THE CLUTCH
Knute Rockne owns the best career winning pct. among Notre Dame coaches in games decided by seven or fewer points, at 21-1-5 (.870). Among Irish coaches with 14-plus such games, the other top winning percentages in tight games belong to Elmer Layden (22-7-3, .734), Frank Leahy (17-5-8, .700), Ara Parseghian (13-6-4/.652), Bob Davie (11-6, .647), Dan Devine (15-9-1/.620) and Lou Holtz (20-18-2/.525). Holtz’s first season saw the Irish go 1-5-0 in games decided by a TD or less.
Notre Dame’s Probable Starting OFFENSE
|LT||75||Kurt Vollers||Made first career starts vs. Pitt and BC, for injured Jordan Black, also played 11:19 at Tennessee|
|LG||72||Ryan Scarola||First career start vs. BC, for injured Jim Jones, 44:09 career playing time prior to BC (12:05 at Pitt)|
|C||64||John Merandi||Preseason first team All-American (Street & Smith’s), veteran of offensive line (29 career games)|
|RG||69||Mike Gandy||Started two games in ’98, Notre Dame’s most experienced guard (11 starts in ’99)|
|RT||68||Matt Brennan||First career start, in place of injured John Teasdale and Sean Mahan, 23:02 career time (7:42 in ’99)|
|SE||88||Bobby Brown||Most experienced receiver (93 career catches, 11 TDs), 12 catches for 208 yards vs. Pitt (TD)|
|TE||87||Jabari Holloway||28 career starts, 3 catches for 51 yards and TD at Mich., ’99 preseason first team All-America (Lindy’s)|
|FL||9||Raki Nelson||45-yard catch on first play vs. BC, after missing previous 5 games, 6 catches for 117 yards vs. MSU|
|QB||7||Jarious Jackson||Ranks 14th nationally in passing efficiency, first solo captain for Irish since 1991, see pp. 14-15|
|FB||45||Joey Goodspeed||Most experienced Irish fullback (34 career games, 9 starts), five catches for 25 yards at Purdue|
|TB||12||Tony Fisher||Averaging 61.5 yards/game, 4.9 yards/carry, vs. KU: 13 rushes for 111 yards, 2 TDs, vs. OU: 26 for 140|
Notre Dame’s Probable Starting DEFENSE
|RT||98||Anthony Weaver||1998 regular who has shifted back to DE after opening ’99 at DT, missed KU game with knee injury|
|LT||77||Brad Williams||Experienced performer with 34 career starts, six tackles, sack vs. Michigan State|
|RT||90||Lance Legree||15 career starts, including last 3 games, slowed by early knee injury, six tackles vs. Navy|
|RE||53||Lamont Bryant||29 career starts, 2 sacks at Mich., 7 tackles at Pur., ranked 10th among ’99 DEs by The Sporting News|
|ILB||39||Anthony Denman||Moved inside in ’99 (25 career gms at OLB), 77 tackles in ’99, INT, 3 fumble recoveries (38-yd TD vs. KU)|
|ILB||34||Ronnie Nicks||Led team with 10 tackles vs. BC, shared tackle lead vs. Kansas (7), slowed early in ’99 by ankle injury|
|OLB||41||Joey Ferrer||First career regular-season start vs. USC (5 tackles), sack vs. ASU, started ’97 Independence Bowl|
|LCB||15||Clifford Jefferson||Saw action in two ’98 games before making first college start and blocking FG vs. KU, 71 tackles in ’99|
|FS||1||Deke Cooper||46 career gms (24 starts) and 199 career tackles (66 in ’99), vs. ASU: 7 tackles, INT, 2 fumble recov.|
|SS||5||A’Jani Sanders||24 career starts, with 217 tackles (team-high 83 in ’99), 3 INTs in ’99 (one for 28-yard TD vs. ASU)|
|RCB||10||Deveron Harper||Most experienced Irish DB (30 starts, 167 tackles), 22-yard INT for a TD vs. Kansas, INTs vs. ASU, Pitt|
? Senior DL Brad Williams owns the longest active streak for consecutive starts (26) on the current Irish football team, followed by senior C John Merandi (23).
? The longest active Irish streaks for consecutive games played belong to senior FS Deke Cooper (46) and senior SE Bobby Brown (36). Junior FL Joey Getherall saw his streak of 23 consecutive games played end at Purdue, due to a shoulder injury suffered at Michigan.
? Just five Irish players have started 26 or more games in their careers at Notre Dame: Williams (33), senior DE Lamont Bryant (30), Brown (27), senior CB Deveron Harper (30) and junior TE Jabari Holloway (28).
Two former Notre Dame walk-on players were elevated to scholarship status prior to the start of the 1999 season. Offensive guard Brendan O’Connor and outside linebacker Anthony Brannan are now scholarship players.
OFFENSIVE SCOUTING REPORT
Senior Jarious Jackson (175 for 297 in ’99, .589 pct., ND season record 2,586 passing yards, 15 TDs, 13 INTs, 235.1 passing yards/gm) is back for his second year as the starting QB and serves as team captain. Jackson finished ’98 ranked 13th nationally in passing efficiency (14th in ’99, at 140.00). His highlights include 85 rushing yards on 12 carries vs. Kansas (38-yard TD), 18 completions for 302 yards at Michigan (20-yard TD on fourth-and-one) and a career-best 22 completions for 267 yards at Purdue (one TD). He added a 15-for-26, 245-yard game vs. MSU (TD, INT) before a huge all-around game vs. Oklahoma: 15 for 21, 276 yards, 2 TDs, 15 rushes for 107, TD. He tied an Irish record with four TD passes vs. ASU (10 for 17, 223 yards) while rushing nine times for 93 (44-yard run, 48-yard TD). He engineered the big comeback vs. USC (19 of 30, 257 yards, TD, INT) before fueling the comeback drive vs. Navy (200 passing yards, 74 rushing yards, career-best 57-yard TD run). Jackson’s last two outings produced a 22-for-38 game at Pittsburgh for a career-best 317 passing yards (most by an Irish QB since 1979) and a 19-for-34 game vs. BC (283 yards, TD, 2 INTs). Jackson headed into the USC matchup with 1,313 passing yards during the previous five games-ranking second-best in the long history of all-star Irish signalcallers. Jackson also ran 15 times for 48 yards at Michigan, with a twisting 12-yard TD run, and had two TD runs at Purdue (15 yards, 1 yard). His ’99 rushing gains include 634 yards on 103 carries (6.2 per carry), prior to subtracting 194 yards lost on 30 sacks (which knocks his average down to 3.3). Jackson is averaging 57.6 rushing yards per game (not counting his sack yardage). See pp. 14-15 for detailed information on Jackson. Sophomore Arnaz Battle ran two series vs. Kansas (one in the second quarter), misfiring on three pass attempts while capping the Irish scoring with a 74-yard TD run. He also ran a first-quarter series vs. MSU (0-for-1 passing, one rush for five yards) and a second-quarter series versus Oklahoma (one completion for six yards, one incompletion). Battle ran the last full series of the second and fourth quarters of the ASU game (no pass attempts, five rushes for a net of three yards) and ran the final series at Tennessee (4-of-6 passing, with two first-down throws, a series-ending INT, a 12-yard rush and 2 sacks). He also ran a three-play, second-quarter series in the BC game (no passes, two rushes for 4 yards) and ran one play in the third quarter when Jackson suffered a minor hand injury.
Sophomore Tony Fisher leads the Irish with 137 rushes for 676 yards (61.5 per game, 4.9 per rush). Fisher enjoyed a huge game vs. Kansas in his first start (13 for 111, TD runs of two and 46 yards) before adding 75 yards on 12 rushes at Michigan, plus two catches for 51 (he had a 40-yard run and 47-yard catch and run vs. UM). Fisher had a career-best 140 yards on 26 carries vs. Oklahoma (55-yard burst on the game’s first play) and made a huge 28-yard catch late in the USC game. He ran 14 times for 70 yards vs. BC, with a 5-yard TD run (his first since the KU game) and a 9-yard TD catch (first of his career). Freshman JULIUS JONES (66 carries, 309 yards, 4.7 per rush) provides backup at TB, with Jones rushing 10 times for a team-best 35 yards vs. USC (he also caught a 49-yard pass) before erupting for 146 yards on 19 carries vs. Navy (most yards by an Irish freshman since 1975) and adding 46 yards on 12 rushes at Tennessee. At fullback, senior Joey Goodspeed and sophomore Tom Lopienski have shared the starting spot. Goodspeed (who started vs. Navy, Tennessee and BC) caught five balls for 25 yards at Purdue while rushing four times for 11 (he has 19 rushes in ’99, for 51 yards). Lopienski-who did not see action as a freshman-has 25 rushes for 76 yards in ’99 and four starts in ’99 (including Pitt).
The line faces major season-ending injuries, with sophomore LT Jordan Black going down with a torn MCL at Tennessee, then junior RT John Teasdale and senior LG Jim Jones suffering arch injuries at Pittsburgh, followed by a shoulder injury by replacement RT starter Sean Mahan vs. BC. The line had a solid opening game vs. Kansas (343 rushing yards-most by ND since ’96) and helped the Irish amass 566 yards of total offense in the win over OU (most by ND since ’96). Senior center John Merandi is the only full-time OL returner from the 1998 team. Next on the list in terms of experience is senior guard Mike Gandy, who moved into the starting lineup for the last three games of ’98. Junior OT KURT VOLLERS made his first career start at Pittsburgh, in place of Black (Vollers played 11-plus minutes of game time at Tenn.). Sophomore OG Ryan Scarola made his first career start vs. BC (he had 22:56 career playing time before that game, including 3:51 at Pitt) while senior OT MATT BRENNAN is slated to make his first career start at Stanford (he has 23:02 career playing time, including 7:42 in two games during the 1999 season). Merandi, Gandy, Jones, Teasdale and Black each started the first nine games in ’99. The top healthy reserves include senior guard Rob Mowl and senior center B.J. SCOTT.
A balanced and deep group of receivers is led by returning starters in senior split end Bobby Brown (93 career receptions for 1,480 yards) and junior TE Jabari Holloway. Brown has 35 catches 593 yards and five TDs in ’99 (all are team bests). He had four catches for 49 yards at Purdue (seven-yard TD), three for 84 vs. ASU (42-yard catch-and-run for a TD) and three for 38 vs. USC. Brown also latched onto a pass in the flat and raced 31 yards for a TD vs. Navy before making the crucial first-down catch on fourth and 10 to set up the winning score. Brown’s last two games produced 12 catches (one shy of the Irish record) for 208 yards and a 42-yard TD at Pitt and four for 61 vs. BC. Brown (16.9 yards per catch) is backed up at SE by sophomore Javin Hunter, who saw limited playing time as a freshman but ranks fifth on the ’99 team with 13 grabs for 224 yards (tied for team-best with 17.2 per rec.), including three catches at both Michigan and Purdue, a 43-yard catch vs. MSU and three catches for 27 yards at Tenn. Senior Jay Johnson adds depth at SE, with five catches for 79 yards in ’99, a 31-yard TD vs. ASU and the winning 16-yard grab vs. Navy. Junior flanker Joey Getherall has 34 catches, for 428 yards (three receiving TDs). He had a strong game at Michigan, where he suffered a shoulder injury that sidelined him for the Purdue and MSU games (he returned for a career-best day vs. Oklahoma). Getherall caught three passes at Michigan for 29 yards, scored on a four-yard reverse and returned two kickoffs for 62 yards. He had six grabs for 133 yards vs. OU (both then-career highs), including a 58-yard catch-and-run for a score (he had two catches vs. ASU, including a 25-yard TD). Getherall then made a career-best seven grabs (73 yards) vs. USC, added six for 61 at Tennessee (he also scored on a 11-yard end-around) and had three catches vs. both Pitt (five-yard TD) and BC. Senior Raki Nelson amassed 18 catches for 332 yards during a four-game stretch before suffering an ACL injury in the OU game (he missed five games before making a 45-yard catch on his first play back, as starter vs. BC). Nelson has 23 catches for 395 yards (team-best 17.2 yards per catch, 65.8 yards per game), with five catches vs. both Michigan (91 yards) and Purdue (68) before equaling a career-high with six catches vs. MSU (for a career-best 117 yards), plus two for 46 vs. OU. Sophomore FL David Givens, who played sparingly as a freshman, is coming off a career-best day vs. BC (5 catches, 48 yards). Givens caught two balls for 34 yards at Michigan and two for 20 vs. Navy (he has 13 total catches for 163). Givens also threw a 21-yard TD pass to Brown at Pitt while also catching two balls, including a 27-yard TD. Holloway is the team’s top returning receiver from ’98 (15 catches, 262 yards, 1 TD) while senior TE Dan O’Leary has played 26 career games, with two grabs for 24 yards vs. KU, two for 30 at Purdue, two for 28 vs. OU, a six-yard TD vs. ASU, a seven-yard TD vs. USC and two catches for a career-best 54 yards at Pitt (he has 10 total catches, 149 yards). Holloway latched onto three catches for 51 yards at Michigan, including the late go-ahead score. He also caught a 27-yard pass at Purdue, two passes for 21 yards vs. OU (including a memorable cross-field pass for a 15-yard TD), made an 11-yard catch vs. USC, caught two passes for 18 yards vs. Navy and made a 25-yard grab vs. BC. Holloway has 10 total catches for 153 yards and two TDs, with his biggest play coming when he recovered Jarious Jackson’s fumble in the end zone for the game-winning TD vs. USC
Freshman JOEY HILDBOLD has averaged 39.1 yards on 50 punts. Senior JIM SANSON opened ’99 with plenty of kicks vs. Kansas (one FG missed, one FG blocked, 6-of-7 on PATs), converted a 20-yard FG and 2-of-3 PATs at Purdue and hit two FGs (33, 34) and one extra point vs. MSU. Sanson missed twice from short range vs. OU and once from close range vs. ASU, before replacing injured sophomore DAVID MILLER in the games vs. Pitt (FGs from 36, 39, 45-yarder blocked) and BC (44-yard FG, one PAT blocked). Sanson has made six of 12 FG tries in ’99, with his career stats including 28-of-47 on field goals (59.6 pct.)-including 25 of 35 from 40 yards or closer-and 107-of-123 on PATs (87.0 pct.). Miller-who missed the Pitt and BC games with a hip flexor-assumed PK duties in the ASU game, making 6-of-7 PATs (one block). Miller made both PATs vs. USC and was 2-of-3 on FGs (miss from 29, good from 37 and 33) before converting 3-of-3 PATs vs. Navy and seeing a 43-yarder blocked (he missed a 25-yarder at Tenn.). Junior JOEY GETHERALL averaged 25.8 yards on four kick returns (41-yarder at Michigan) and 9.8 yards on five punt returns in the first two games. While Getherall was sidelined for the Purdue and MSU games (shoulder injury at Michigan), the Irish turned to freshman JULIUS JONES on punts (14 returns in ’99, 20th in nation with 12.9 avg., 67-yard TD) while kickoffs were handled by sophomore Terrance Howard (16 total, avg. of 21.5, long of 36, hamstring injury at Tennessee) and Jones (20 returns, 41st in nation with 22.8 avg., long of 36). Senior walk-on JAMES CAPUTO is the holder while sophomore GERALD MORGAN took over long-snapper duties on FGs and PATs from senior DAN O’LEARY (he handles punts), beginning with the Navy game.
CAREER BESTS – RUSHING YARDS
|Arnaz Battle||75 yards vs. Kansas, ’99|
|Tony Fisher||140 vs. Oklahoma, ’99|
|Joey Goodspeed||109 vs. Arizona St., ’98|
|Jarious Jackson||107 vs. Oklahoma, ’99|
|Julius Jones||146 vs. Navy, ’99|
|Tom Lopienski||20 vs. USC, ’99|
CAREER BESTS – COMPLETIONS
|Arnaz Battle||7 vs. USC, ’98|
|Jarious Jackson||22 vs. Purdue, Pitt. ’99|
CAREER BESTS – PASSING YARDS
|Arnaz Battle||94 vs. USC, ’98|
|Jarious Jackson||317 vs. Pitt, ’99|
CAREER BESTS – RECEPTIONS
|Bobby Brown||12 vs. Pitt, ’99|
|Tony Fisher||3 vs. BC, ’99|
|Joey Getherall||7 vs. USC, ’99|
|David Givens||5, vs. BC, ’99|
|Joey Goodspeed||5 vs. Purdue, ’99|
|Jabari Holloway||4 vs. Purdue, ’98|
|Javin Hunter||3 vs. Mich./Purdue, ’99|
|Jay Johnson||2 vs. Tennessee, ’99|
|Tom Lopienski||2 vs. Michigan St., ’99|
|Raki Nelson||6 vs. BC, ’97, MSU ’99|
|Dan O’Leary||4 vs. Purdue, ’97|
CAREER BESTS – RECEIVING YARDS
|Bobby Brown||208 vs. Pitt, ’99|
|Joey Getherall||133 vs. Oklahoma, ’99|
|David Givens||48 vs. BC, ’99|
|Joey Goodspeed||25 vs. Purdue, ’99|
|Jabari Holloway||94 vs. Purdue, ’98|
|Javin Hunter||84 vs. Michigan St., ’99|
|Julius Jones||49 vs. USC, ’99|
|Raki Nelson||117 vs. Michigan St., ’99|
|Dan O’Leary||54 vs. Pitt, ’99|
CAREER BESTS – TACKLES
|Rocky Boiman||7 vs. Michigan, ’99|
|Lamont Bryant||9 vs. Ga. Tech, MSU, ’97|
|Deke Cooper||16 vs. Michigan State, ’98|
|Anthony Denman||13 vs. Tenn., ’99|
|Donald Dykes||3 vs. Pitt, ’99|
|Joe Ferrer||5 vs. USC, Navy, BC, ’99|
|Deveron Harper||10 vs. USC, ’97|
|Tyreo Harrison||11 vs. Pitt, ’99|
|Grant Irons||8 in three games|
|Clifford Jefferson||10 vs. Purdue, ’99|
|Antwon Jones||5 vs. Army, ’98|
|Lance Legree||6 vs. Navy, ’99|
|Ronnie Nicks||10 vs. BC, ’99|
|Carlos Pierre-Antoine||5 vs. ASU, ’99|
|A’Jani Sanders||14 vs. Michigan, ’98|
|Gerome Sapp||4 vs. ASU, ’99|
|Anthony Weaver||5 vs. Navy, ’98 and ’99|
|Brad Williams||8 vs. Navy, ’98|
NOTRE DAME BESTS – 1990s
|Rushing Yards||458 vs. Purdue, ’92|
|Passing Yards||338 vs. Pitt, ’99|
|Total Yards||650 in two games|
|First Downs||34 vs. MSU, ’91|
|Low Rush. Yards All.||-6 vs. Rutgers, ’96|
|Low Pass Yards All.||12 vs. Army, ’98|
|Low Total Yds. All.||43 vs. Rutgers, ’96|
|Fewest First Downs All.||5 in two games|
|Points (Game)||62 vs. Rutgers, ’96|
|Points (Half)||42 (2nd) vs. Navy, ’90|
|Points (Qtr)||40 (2nd) vs. Pitt., ’96|
|Victory Margin||62 (62-0) vs. Rut., ’96|
ND BESTS – DAVIE ERA (1997-)
|Rushing Yards||343 vs. Kansas, ’99|
|Passing Yards||338 vs. Pitt, ’99|
|Total Yards||566 vs. Oklahoma, ’99|
|First Downs||29 vs. BC, ’97|
|Low Rush Yds. All.||33 vs. Baylor, ’98|
|Low Pass Yds. All.||12 vs. Army, ’98|
|Low Total Yds. All.||172 vs. Baylor, ’98|
|Fewest 1st Downs All.||12 vs. Army, ’98|
|Sacks||5 vs. Baylor, ’98|
|Turnovers Forced||6 vs. ASU, ’99|
|Points (Game)||52 vs. BC, ’97|
|Pts (Half)||31 vs. Pitt. (2nd half), ’97|
|Points (Qtr)||27 vs. ASU, ’99|
|Vict. Margin||35 (48-13), vs. KU, ’99|
TURNING THE TABLES
? The Irish defense forced four turnovers in the Kansas game, extending one of the ’98 team’s high points (the Irish also were guilty of four turnovers vs. KU). In ’98, Notre Dame tied for 21st in the nation with a +0.64 regular-season turnover ratio. Just 11 Div. I-A squads had fewer turnovers than the 18 by the Irish in ’98 (the Irish also had just 13 in ’97). The Irish have turned it over 27 times so far in ’99 while forcing 24 (-3).
? The ND offense posted low turnover averages in ’97 (1.18/gm, 13 total) and ’98 (1.63, 18) but is averaging 2.46 turnovers during the first 11 games of ’99 (27 total, none in back-to-back games vs. OU and ASU-the first time that has happened for the Irish since 1993).
? The Irish finished the 1998 season with a +7 overall turnover ratio but are -3 so far in 1999 (the Irish defense has forced 13 fumbles and 11 interceptions while the Irish offense has 13 fumbles and 14 interceptions).
DEFENSIVE SCOUTING REPORT
Senior Lamont Bryant (49 tackles, six for loss, four sacks) starts at one defensive end spot. Bryant had two sacks at Michigan, seven tackles at Purdue and six vs. MSU before totaling seven tackles and a sack at Pitt and adding seven tackles in the BC game. Sophomore ANTHONY WEAVER likely will start at the other DE spot, with junior Grant Irons out with a cracked fibula (Weaver also started vs. BC). Weaver started at DT for seven games, after missing the Kansas game due to a knee injury, with four tackles (one for loss) at Michigan, four vs. USC, five vs. Navy and four at Tennessee (he has 21 total). The starting tackles are senior Brad Williams (24 total tackles in ’99, six tackles and a sack vs. MSU, forced fumble vs. Navy) and senior Lance Legree, who missed the Kansas and Michigan games with a strained right knee but has returned to play a key role, with 14 total tackles in ’99, including six vs. Navy and starts in the last three games. Sophomore Ryan Roberts (sack vs. KU, six total tackles) provides backup at DE while senior Antwon Jones (started ’99 opener vs. Kansas, five total tackles) and junior Andy WisNe (12 tackles, two sacks in ’99) provide depth inside.
The most experienced returner is junior Anthony Denman, who starts inside (weakside). Denman (second on team with 77 tackles, eight for loss) had seven tackles and scooped up a fumble for a 31-yard TD vs. KU, shared the team lead with 10 tackles at Michigan and added nine tackles, a sack and a forced fumble vs. MSU. He led the team with eight tackles vs. ASU, seven vs. USC and a career-best 13 at Tenn. (he also recovered fumbles vs. USC and Navy and had an interception at Pitt). Senior Ronnie Nicks opened ’99 as the starter at the other inside spot (strong side) but missed most of the Michigan game and the Purdue, MSU and OU games with an ankle injury. Nicks also missed the Pitt game (quadricep) and has 18 total tackles, including seven vs. KU and a team-best 10 after returning to starting lineup vs. BC (with a sack). Senior JoeY Ferrer (25 tackles) has started the past five games at dropback/outside LB, with a career-high five tackles vs. both USC, Navy and BC (he had a sack in the ASU game). Sophomore Rocky Boiman started the first six games at OLB, making his presence felt with two fumble recoveries vs. KU. Boiman (34 total tackles in ’99, fumble recovery vs. Navy, sacks vs. Pitt and BC) had seven tackles at Michigan but was used mostly on special teams at Purdue (the Irish used five and six DBs for most of the game). Sophomores Carlos Pierre-Antoine (18 tackles in ’99) and Tyreo Harrison and senior Anthony Brannan provide depth inside. Harrison-who started two games in place of Nicks (including the Pitt game)-had five tackles at Michigan, was second on the team with 10 vs. MSU (three for loss) and led the Irish with 11 at Pitt (he has 34 total tackles, plus a blocked FG at Tenn.).
Senior right CB DEVERON HARPER started the previous two years and is fifth on the ’99 team with 52 tackles. Harper returned an interception for 22 yards for a TD vs. KU and added INTs vs. ASU and Pitt. Sophomore CLIFFORD JEFFERSON (third on ’99 team with 71 tackles) made his debut at left CB vs. KU (seven tackles), adding nine at Michigan and 10 at Purdue (he also recovered a fumble vs. the Boilers). Sophomore SHANE WALTON, in his first year with the Irish football program after playing soccer last year, also is in the mix. Sophomore DONALD DYKES also sees action at corner along with freshman JASON BECKSTROM (they both have been used in the nickel/dime packages as extra corners). Senior DEKE COOPER (top returning tackler from ’98 with 78) is the starter at free safety, ranking fourth on the ’99 team with 66 tackles. Cooper had six tackles and caused a fumble vs. KU before making seven tackles at Michigan and seven at Purdue. His big game vs. ASU included seven tackles, two fumble recoveries and a 33-yard INT. He added an INT vs. USC, forced a fumble vs. Navy, plus nine tackles at Tennessee and eight vs. BC. Fifth-year veteran A’JANI SANDERS (58 tackles, team-high three INTs in ’98) is back at strong safety, with a team-best 83 tackles in ’99 (nine for loss, plus three INTs). Sanders had seven tackles and a caused fumble vs. KU before sharing the team lead with 10 tackles at Michigan and a team-best 11 at Purdue (plus a 10-yard INT). He added a team-best 12 tackles vs. MSU, had a 28-yard INT return for a TD vs. ASU and made a team-best nine tackles vs. Navy. Freshman JEROME SAPP is the most healthy FS backup, with junior JUSTIN SMITH possibly making a return this week after knee surgery (he played on special teams vs. Pitt and BC). Junior RON ISRAEL is the top SS backup, but missed the Pitt game with a fractured hand (he returned vs. BC). Israel was a key part of the nickel/dime package at Purdue before suffering an ankle injury that sidelined him for the MSU game. Israel started vs. Purdue and OU (six-DB sets) and had two key plays vs. USC (a 16-yard sack and a forced fumble on a blitz, setting up a TD drive).
PRESEASON AND ’99 Honors
WR Bobby Brown
? CBS/Chevrolet MVP vs. Michigan State (12 catches for 208 yards, TD)
DE Lamont Bryant
? The Sporting News, ranked 10th among defensive ends
? Lindy’s, ranked 12th among DEs
? Street & Smith’s and Walter Camp Football Foundation, Honorable Mention All-American
FS Deke Cooper
? Named to “watch list” for 1999 Jim Thorpe Award, given to nation’s top DB
? Lindy’s, ranked 12th among safeties
? The Sporting News, ranked eighth among free safeties
? Street & Smith’s and Walter Camp Football Foundation, Honorable Mention All-American
LB Anthony Denman
? NBC/Chevrolet MVP vs. Michigan State (9 tackles, sack, forced fumble)
TB Tony Fisher
? NBC/Chevrolet MVP vs. Kansas (13 rushes for 111 yards, 2 TDs)
FL Joey Getherall
? ESPN/Chevrolet MVP vs. Tennessee (6 catches for 61 yards)
CB Deveron Harper
? Lindy’s, ranked 13th among cornerbacks
TE Jabari Holloway
? Lindy’s, First Team All-American
? Lindy’s, ranked first among tight ends
? The Sporting News, ranked seventh among tight ends
? NBC/Chevrolet MVP vs. USC (fumble recovery for winning TD, 11-yd catch)
TB Julius Jones
? NBC/Chevrolet MVP vs. Navy (19 rushes for 146 yards, 3 returns for 28)
? NBC/Chevrolet MVP vs. Boston College (4 KRs for 97 yds, 2 PRs for 171, 4 rush for 2)
C John Merandi
? Street & Smith’s and Walter Camp Football Foundation, First Team All-American
? Lindy’s, ranked seventh among centers
QB Jarious Jackson
? One of 25 finalists for Davie O’Brien Award
? One of 15 semifinalists for Football News offensive player of the year
? The Sporting News, ranked fifth among all-purpose quarterbacks
? Street & Smith’s and Walter Camp Football Foundation, Honorable Mention All-American
? Lindy’s, ranked 24th among quarterbacks
? One of 16 finalists for the Unitas Award
? ABC/Chevrolet MVP vs. Michigan (passing: 20 for 40, 317 yards, TD, INT)
? ABC/Chevrolet MVP vs. Purdue (passing: 22 for 34, 267 yards, TD, INT)
? NBC/Chevrolet MVP vs. Oklahoma (passing: 15 for 21, 276 yds, 2 TDs, 0 INT, rushing: 15 for 107 yards, TD)
? NBC/Chevrolet MVP vs. Arizona State (passing: 10 for 17, 223 yds, 4 TDs, 0 INT, rushing: 9 for 93 yards, TD)
Notre Dame Defensive Line
? The Sporting News, ranked fifth in country
Notre Dame Secondary
? The Sporting News, ranked ninth in country
IRISH ALREADY ACCUSTOMED TO CLOSE FINISHES
The Irish finished 9-3 in ’98 based mainly on their ability to win the close games, with comeback and/or close wins over Michigan (36-20), Purdue (31-30), Army (20-17), Boston College (31-26) and LSU (39-36).
In 1999, the Irish lost their first three close games before winning the next three, losing a 10-point game at Pitt and dropping a 31-29 game to BC:
? Michigan – Notre Dame and Michigan traded dramatic TD drives in the final few minutes (the Wolverines surged ahead 26-22), with the Irish nearly scoring again before time expired at the Michigan 12-yard line.
? Purdue – Purdue used a pair of late field goals to take a 28-23 lead but the Irish drove to the Boilermakers’ one-yard line … before again seeing time expire.
? Michigan State -The game’s decisive play came with five minutes remaining, when Bill Burke found Gari Scott open in the left flat for a stunning 80-yard touchdown play and a 20-13 MSU lead (the Spartans won, 23-13).
? Oklahoma – The Irish rallied from a 30-14 deficit with 10 minutes left in the third quarter, fashioning three straight TD drives en route to a 34-30 win.
? USC – ND overcame a 24-3 third-quarter deficit to win 25-24, with Jabari Holloway recovering a Jarious Jackson fumble in the end zone on the winning drive.
? Navy – The Irish drove in the closing minutes for a 28-24 win, with Bobby Brown narrowly converting a first down on fourth-and-10 before Jarious Jackson completed a 16-yard, third-and-10 pass to Jay Johnson for the winning score.
? Pittsburgh – Notre Dame trails 30-27 before Pitt clinches the game with a 10-play, 44-yard touchdown drive with 1:41 left to play.
? Boston College – The Irish rally from a 31-17 deficit but a blocked PAT by Jim Sanson leaves the score at 31-23 and a two-point try after the next Irish TD fails to tie the score. The game ends 31-29, after Jarious Jackson is intercepted at the ND 27-yard line with 2:05 left to play.
LIVING ON THE EDGE
? Over the past three seasons, Notre Dame is 11-6 in games decided by a TD or less, with losses to No. 6 Michigan (21-14) and USC (20-17) in 1997, vs. Georgia Tech in the 1998 Gator Bowl (35-28), and in 1999 at seventh-ranked Michigan (26-22), 20th-ranked Purdue (28-23) and at home vs. No. 25 Boston College (31-29).
? The Irish posted close wins over Georgia Tech (17-13), Navy (21-17), No. 22 West Virginia (21-14) and Hawaii (23-22) in the ’97 season before beating Purdue (31-30) and Army (20-17) on late field goals in ’98, turning in a goalline stand to hold off Boston College (31-26) and rallying to beat LSU (39-36). The Irish have added close wins in 1999 vs. Oklahoma (34-30), USC (25-24) and Navy (28-24).
? Included in the above 17 games is an 10-4 mark in games decided by 1-5 points.
? Notre Dame won seven straight close games (1-7 points)-from Nov. 1, 1997, to Nov. 21, 1998-before losing its next three close games (vs. Georgia Tech, Michigan and Purdue), followed by close wins over Oklahoma, USC and Navy and close losses to Pitt and BC.
? 11 of Notre Dame’s last 14 games have been decided by 10 points or less: 39-36 win over LSU in ’98, 10-0 loss at USC, 35-28 Gator Bowl loss to Georgia Tech, all three ’99 losses (26-22 at Michigan, 28-23 at Purdue, 23-13 vs. MSU), ’99 wins over Oklahoma (34-30), USC (25-24) and Navy (28-24), the 37-27 loss at Pitt and the 31-29 loss to BC.
NOTRE DAME ROLL UP YARDS VS. OU BEHIND BALANCED OFFENSE
? Notre Dame’s 566 yards of total offense vs. No. 23 Oklahoma were most by an Irish team since the 1996 squad amassed 648 yards against Rutgers. The 566-yard output represented the Irish program’s third-highest total versus a ranked team in the last 30-plus seasons (1969-99) and included a balance between the rushing (284) and passing (282) yards. Previous ND teams have totaled 280-plus rushing yards and 280-plus passing yards in the same game just once since 1986 and seven times since the end of the 1963 season (all vs. unranked teams).
1999 TEAM IMPROVEMENTS
? Notre Dame opened 1999 by outscoring Kansas 14-0 in the third quarter but was outscored 10-0 in the third quarter at Michigan and 8-7 at Purdue, with no third-quarter points by either team in the MSU game, a 14-7 Irish third-quarter edge vs. OU, a 14-7 Irish edge in the ASU game, a 7-3 third quarter vs. USC, 7-7 vs. Navy, 7-14 vs. Tennessee ,14-17 at Pitt and 0-7 vs. BC (yielding a positive third-quarter margin of 158-107 over the past 21 games).
? Notre Dame forced 25 turnovers in ’98 (only 21 in ’97) and has forced 24 in ’99 (four in the Kansas game, none at Michigan, two at Purdue, two vs. MSU, one vs. OU, six vs ASU, three vs. USC, three vs. Navy, none vs. Tennessee, three at Pitt, none vs. BC).
JARIOUS JACKSON NOTES
JACKSON SETS IRISH RECORDS, ON VERGE OF OTHERS
Senior QB Jarious Jackson could set several Notre Dame records in the Stanford game:
? He needs two passing attempts and eight completions to break the single-season records set by Ron Powlus in 1997 (298 and 182, in 11 games).
? His 2,586 passing yards already have surpassed the long-standing season record total of 2,429, set by Joe Theismann over 10 games in 1970.
? His 14 TD passes are five shy of tying the Irish record, set by Powlus in 1994 (Rick Mirer is the only other Irish QB to throw more than 16 in a season, with 18 in 1991).
? On a per-game basis, Jackson also is in the running to set records for pass attempts/gm (27.0, record is 28.1), completions/gm (15.9, 16.6), passing yards/gm (235.1, 242.9), passing yards per attempt (8.7, 10.1) and passing yards per completion (14.8, 18.1).
? His 297 career completions are tied with Blair Kiel (1980-83) for fifth in Irish history, just seven behind Terry Hanratty’s 304 from 1966-68. Jackson also ranks fourth in Notre Dame history for career passing yards (4,653) and career total offense yards (5,586).
EFFICIENT AND PROFICIENT
Jarious Jackson and Stanford’s Todd Husak (15th, 20th) are two of 12 players in the nation who rank among the top 20 for both passing efficiency (Jackson is 14th, at 140.1) and total offense (17th, 275.09). The others include Georgia Tech’s Joe Hamilton (1st, 3rd), Marshall’s Chad Pennington (2nd, 7th), Louisiana Tech’s Tim Rattay (4th, 1st), Florida State’s Chris Weinke (7th, 18th), Western Michigan’s Tim Lester (9th, 11th), BYU’s Kevin Freterik (16th, 8th), Louisville’s Chris Redman (12th, 5th), Colorado’s Mike Moschetti (13th, 15th), Nevada’s David Neill (17th, 4th) and Texas’ Major Applewhite (18th, 16th). Jackson is one of nine players who rank 17th or higher in both categories.
? Prior to the Oct. 9th ASU game, Jarious Jackson had passed for 240-plus yards in each of four straight games, becoming the first player to accomplish that feat in the storied history of Notre Dame quarterbacks. He had a career-best 302 passing yards as Michigan, followed by 267 at Purdue, 245 vs. Michigan State and 276 vs. Oklahoma.
? Jackson’s combined passing total of 1,090 yards in those games ranks as the second-best stretch over four games in Irish history, trailing only Joe Theismann’s 1,231 in 1970 (284 vs. Pittsburgh, 272 vs. Georgia Tech, 149 vs. LSU and an Irish record 526 vs. USC).
? Theismann followed up the USC game with 176 yards vs. Texas in the Cotton Bowl, for a record five-game total of 1,407 (Jackson’s 223 vs. ASU gave him 1,313).
? Other top four-game passing totals at ND: 1,009 by Rusty Lisch in ’79 (160 vs. Ga. Tech, 227 vs. Air Force, 286 vs. USC, 336 vs. So. Carolina), 995 by John Huarte during his ’64 Heisman Trophy season (209 vs. UCLA, 300 vs. Stanford, 274 vs. Navy, 212 vs. Pittsburgh), and 947 by Steve Beuerlein in ’86 (119 vs. Air Force, 248 vs. Navy, 269 vs. SMU, 311 vs. Penn State).
? Jackson’s passing streak included three opponents that were ranked in the AP poll at game time, plus an MSU team that was ranked the next week. The other four players listed above faced just three ranked opponents combined in their four-game passing streaks: Theismann (LSU), Lisch (USC), Huarte (none) and Beuerlein (Penn State).
? Jackson’s combined passing yards over a two (569) and three-game (814) stretch ranked third at ND since 1970, behind Lisch (622, 848) and Beuerlein (580, 828). He then totaled 600 passing yards in consecutive games vs. Pitt (317) and BC (283) and needs 249 passing yards at Stanford to ecplipse Lisch’s mark for the best three-game total.
JACKSON POSTS FIFTH AND SIXTH 300-YARD GAMES AT ND SINCE 1970
? Jarious Jackson’s 302 passing yards (18-for-29, TD, INT) at seventh-ranked Michigan and 317 at Pitt (22-for-38, 2 TDs, INT) represent just the fifth and sixth games with 300-plus passing yards by an Irish quarterback in 29 seasons (and first since ’91)-dating back to the USC game on Nov. 28, 1970, when Joe Theismann threw for an Irish record 526 yards (33 of 58) versus the unranked Trojans.
? The only other Irish QBs to throw for 300-plus yards since 1970 are: Rusty Lisch (336 vs. South Carolina in ’79, 24 of 43, TD, INT), Joe Montana (358 at No. 3 USC in ’78, 20 of 41, TD), Steve Beuerlein (311 vs. No. 3 Penn State in ’86, 11 of 20, TD), and Rick Mirer (303 yards vs. Navy in ’91, 17 of 27, 3 TDs, INT).
? Career-best passing games for other noteworthy Irish QBs since 1970 include: Tom Clements (287 vs. Purdue in ’72) and Ron Powlus (293 at Purdue in ’97).
|Comp-Att. (Pct.)||Yards||Yds/gm||TDs/INTs||QB Rating||Rush Att.-Yards||Rush TDs|
|’96||10 of 15 (.667)||181||30.2||3/0||234.0||11-16||0|
|’97||8 of 17 (.471)||146||16.2||1/1||126.9||8-36||3|
|’98||104 of 188 (.553)||1740||174.0||13/6||149.5||113-441||3|
|’99||175 of 297 (.589)||2586||235.1||15/13||140.0||133-440||7|
|Tot.||297 of 517 (.575)||4653||129.3||32/20||147.7||265-933||13|
JACKSON IN THE NOTRE DAME RECORD BOOK
? Jarious Jackson continues to make his mark in the Irish season record book, with his ’99 passing yards/gm (235.1) ranking second behind Joe Theismann’s 242.9 in 1970 (Jackson needs to pass for 330 yards at Stanford to finish with an Irish-record 243.0 avg.). Jackson’s .589 completion pct. is close to Kevin McDougal’s record (.616, 1993).
? Jackson’s 147.7 career passing efficiency rating ranks second in Irish history (behind McDougal’s 154.4) while his .575 career completion percentage also is tied for second and is tied for first among passers with more than 200 attempts.
? His low interception total (6) in ’98 produced an “interception avoidance” ratio of 0.0319 INTs per attempt, ranking among the top eight in Irish single-season history.
? Jackson’s career interception ratio of .0387 is fourth all-time at Notre Dame while his 9.00 yards/att. and 15.7 yards/completion both rank third in Irish history.
? Jackson’s 188 passing and 113 rushing attempts in ’98 produced 301 total offense attempts, ninth-most in Irish history. He has 430 total plays in ’99 (297 pass, 133 rush), besting Theismann’s record of 391 (’70). Jackson is on pace for 469 total offense attempts. Theismann averaged 39.10 plays over 10 games in 1970 while Jackson is averaging 39.09 in 1999 (Jackson needs 40 plays at Stanford to best Theismann’s record for total-offense average).
? Jackson has nine games with 200-plus yards of total offense in ’99, eclipsing the record of eight set by Theismann in 1970 (Jackson had six in ’98).
? Jackson’s 2,181 yards of total offense in ’98 (1,740 passing, 441 rushing) ranks sixth all-time at Notre Dame while his 1999 total of 3,026 set an Irish record.
? During the past two seasons, Notre Dame is 8-0 when Jarious Jackson has rushed for 60-plus yards, 7-3 when he has totaled more than 260 yards of total offense and 4-0 when he has completed 63-plus percent of his passes.
OFF AND RUNNING
? Jarious Jackson ignited the win over Kansas with a 38-yard touchdown run, then the longest TD run of his career and second-longest run overall (he had a 43-yarder versus Baylor in ’98).
? Jackson scampered for the two longest runs of his career vs. ASU, burning the Sun Devils defense for 44 yards on one play before scoring on a 48-yard option keeper later in the game (he then pushed his career-best run mark to 57 yards with a long TD run vs. Navy).
Senior quarterback Jarious Jackson (Tupelo, Miss.) was elected captain of the 1999 Notre Dame football team, the third time in 32 seasons that Notre Dame has featured a single football captain (joining Mike Kovaleski ’86 and Rodney Culver ’91).
AN EFFICIENT SEASON
Due in part to a solid TD-to-INT ratio (13/6), Notre Dame senior Jarious Jackson was 9-2 as a starter in 1998 and ranked 13th in the nation with a 149.50 passing efficiency rating. That QB rating ranks second among Irish QBs in the ’90s (behind Kevin McDougal’s 151.29 in ’93) and marked the eighth time in the last nine seasons that an Irish QB has finished in the top 20 (he’s 14th in ’99).
Jackson became the ninth straight Notre Dame QB to see the Irish win in his first start, after leading Notre Dame in ’98 to the 36-20 win over then-No. 5 Michigan.
HITTING THE CENTURY MARK
Jackson’s 100 rushing yards vs. Stanford in ’98 represented the most yards on the ground by an Irish QB since Tony Rice ran 26 times for 141 yards and two TDs, vs. Penn State on Nov. 18, 1989 … Jackson also had three rushing TDs in the ’98 Stanford game-most by an Irish QB in 32 seasons, since Paul Hornung ran for three TDs (and kicked the PATs) in a 21-14 win over North Carolina on Nov. 17, 1956.
JACKSON’S TOP SINGLE-GAME EFFORTS
(italics – ND loss, rankings based on AP poll at time of game, min. 14 carries for avg. list)
|Opponent (Date), Comp.-Att.-TD-Int.||Yards|
|1.||at Pittsburgh (11/13/99), 22-38-2-1||317|
|2.||at #5 Michigan (9/4/99), 18-29-0-0||302|
|3.||#25 Boston College (11/20/99), 19-34-1-2||283|
|4.||LSU (11/21/98), 13-21-2-1||276|
|5.||Oklahoma (10/2/99), 15-21-2-0||276|
|6.||Army (10/24/98), 17-31-1-1||270|
|7.||USC (10/16/99), 19-30-1-1||257|
|8.||Michigan State (9/18/99), 15-26-1-1||245|
|9.||at #20 Purdue (9/11/99), 24-40-1-1||237|
|Opponent (Date), Carries||Yards|
|1.||Oklahoma (10/2/99), 15||107|
|2.||Stanford (10/3/98), 18||100|
|3.||Arizona State (10/9/99), 9||93|
|4.||Kansas (8/28/99), 12||85|
|5.||LSU (11/21/98), 21||80|
|6.||Navy (10/30/99), 13||74|
|7.||#7 Michigan (9/5/98), 16||62|
|8.||vs. Navy (11/14/98), 11||61|
|Opponent (Date), Pass-Rush||Yards|
|1.||Oklahoma (10/2/99), 276-107||383|
|2.||LSU (11/21/98), 276-80||356|
|3.||at Pittsburgh (11/13/99), 317-1||318|
|4.||Arizona State (10/9/99), 223-93||316|
|5.||#25 Boston College, 293-23||306|
|6.||at #5 Michigan (9/4/99), 302-(-1)||301|
|7.||Army (10/24/98), 270-19||289|
|8.||USC (10/16/99), 257-20||277|
|9.||Navy (10/30/99), 200-74||274|
|10.||Stanford (10/3/98), 163-100||263|
COMPLETION PCT. (min. 14 att.)
|Opponent (Date), Comp.-Att.-TD-Int.||Pct.|
|1.||vs. Navy (11/14/98), 12-14-1-0||.857|
|2.||Stanford (10/3/98), 11-15-0-1||.733|
|3.||Oklahoma (10/2/99), 15-21-2-0||.711|
|4.||USC (10/16/99), 19-30-1-1||.633|
|5.||at #5 Michigan (9/4/99), 18-29-0-0||.620|
|6.||LSU (11/21/98), 13-21-2-1||.619|
|7.||at #4 Tennessee (11/6/99), 11-18-0-1||.611|
|Opponent (Date), Att.-Yds-TD-Int.||Comp.|
|1.||at #20 Purdue (9/11/99), 40-237-1-1||24|
|2.||at Pittsburgh (11/13/99), 38-317-2-1||22|
|3.||#25 Boston Coll. (11/20/99), 19-283-1-2||19|
|USC (10/16/99), 30-257-1-1||19|
|5.||at #5 Michigan (9/4/99), 29-302-0-0||18|
|6.||Army (10/24/98), 31-270-1-1||17|
|Opponent (Date), Comp.-Yds-TD-Int.||Att.|
|1.||at #20 Purdue (9/11/99), 24-237-1-1||40|
|2.||at Pittsburgh (11/13/99), 22-317-2-1||38|
|3.||#25 Boston Coll. (11/20/99), 19-283-1-2||34|
|4.||Navy (10/30/99), 15-200-2-2||33|
|5.||Army (10/24/98), 17-270-1-1||31|
|6.||USC (10/16/99), 19-257-1-1||30|
|at Michigan State (9/12/98), 12-165-0-2||30|
|8.||at #5 Michigan (9/4/99), 18-302-0-0||29|
PASSING YARDS/ATT. (min. 14 att.)
|Opponent (Date), Att.-Yards-TD-Int.||Avg.|
|1.||LSU (11/21/98), 21-276-2-1||13.1|
|2.||vs. Navy (11/14/98), 14-159-1-0||11.4|
|3.||at #5 Michigan (9/4/99), 29-302-0-0||10.4|
|4.||Stanford (10/3/98), 15-163-0-1||10.9|
|5.||at Boston College (11/7/98), 21-210-2-0||10.0|
|6.||Michigan State (9/18/99), 15-26-1-1||9.4|
PASS YARDS/COMP. (min. 14 att.)
|Opponent (Date), Comp.-Yds-TD-Int.||Avg.|
|1.||Arizona State (10/9/99), 10-17-4-0||22.3|
|2.||LSU (11/21/98), 13-276-2-1||21.2|
|3.||at Boston College (11/7/98), 10-210-2-0||21.0|
|4.||at #5 Michigan (9/4/99), 18-302-0-0||16.8|
|5.||Michigan State (9/18/99), 15-245-1-1||16.3|
|Army (10/24/98), 17-270-1-1||16.3|
|Opponent (Date), Yards||Att.|
|1.||LSU (11/21/98), 80||21|
|2.||USC (10/16/99), 20||18|
|Stanford (10/3/98), 100||18|
|4.||#7 Michigan (9/5/98), 62||16|
|5.||Oklahoma (10/2/99), 107||15|
|at #5 Michigan (9/4/99), -1||15|
JACKSON IN THE IRISH CAREER RECORD BOOK
|1.||Kevin McDougal, 1990-93||154.4|
|2.||Jarious Jackson, 1996-||147.7|
|1.||Kevin McDougal, 1990-93||.622|
|(112 of 180)|
|2.||Jarious Jackson, 1996-||.575|
|(297 of 517)|
|Ron Powlus, 1994-97||.575|
|(558 of 969)|
|4.||Joe Theismann, 1968-70||.570|
|(290 of 509)|
|5.||Steve Beuerlein, 1983-86||.556|
|(473 of 850)|
|1.||Ron Powlus, 1994-97||.0278|
|(27 of 969)|
|2.||Rick Mirer, 1994-97||.0329|
|(23 of 698)|
|3.||Kevin McDougal, 1990-93||.0333|
|(6 of 180)|
|4.||Jarious Jackson, 1996-||.0387|
|(20 of 517)|
|5.||John Huarte, 1962-64||.0431|
|(11 of 255)|
|1.||Kevin McDougal, 1990-93||9.58|
|(180 for 1726)|
|2.||John Huarte, 1962-64||9.20|
|(255 for 2343)|
|3.||Jarious Jackson, 1996-||9.00|
|(517 for 4653)|
|4.||Joe Theismann, 1968-70||8.67|
|(509 for 4411)|
|1.||George Izo, 1957-59||17.3|
|(121 for 2085)|
|2.||John Huarte, 1962-64||17.0|
|(138 for 2343)|
|3.||Jarious Jackson, 1996-||15.7|
|(297 for 4653)|
FOOTBALL PROGRAM NOTES
RECENT IRISH RUSHING HISTORY
Notre Dame’s rushing attack has ranked 20th or better in 11 of the previous 12 years and 36th or better in each of the last 14, including 1999 (the Irish have averaged 174 yards or higher in every season since averaging 164.4 in 1985, ranking 56th):
|Year||Rushing Average||NCAA Rank||Rushing TDs|
IRISH STUDENT-ATHLETES AGAIN MAKE THE GRADE
? Notre Dame was No. 1 when the college football teams in the Sept. 1 wire service rankings were reranked by graduation rate, and the overall graduation rate of the University’s athlete’s third among the nation’s Division I-A colleges and universities, according to the latest annual report compiled by the NCAA.
? The report covers students who enrolled between 1989 and 1992 at 312 Division I institutions, including 112 in Division I-A. The NCAA bases graduation rates on the raw percentage of student-athletes who entered an institution and graduated within six years. Students who leave or transfer, regardless of academic standing, are considered nongraduates.
? Using the NCAA formula, Notre Dame graduated a four-year average of 88 percent of its student-athletes, third only to Duke and Northwestern at 91 and 90 percent, respectively. The national average for Division I-A schools is 58 percent. (Among student-athletes who complete all four years of athletic eligibility at Notre Dame, i.e., not considering those who leave or transfer, 99 percent earn their degree).
? Notre Dame graduated 85 pct. of all men competing in varsity athletics, fourth behind Duke, Northwestern and Stanford Universities. Among women, Notre Dame’s 94-percent graduation rate is bettered only by Northwestern and Boston College, both at 96 pct..
? Fighting Irish football players graduated at a 78-percent rate, seventh overall but tied for first with Penn State among the top 25 programs in the Sept. 1 polls.
? Among BIG EAST institutions, the 83-percent graduation rate of the Notre Dame men’s basketball is second only to St. John’s University at 92 percent.
? Notre Dame graduated 78 percent of its African-American student-athletes, ranking behind only Duke, Vanderbilt, Northwestern and Stanford.
NOTRE DAME RANKS THIRD ON SPORTING NEWS “REPORT CARD”
? The Notre Dame athletic program ranks third in the nation among 112 NCAA Division I programs, according to a survey by The Sporting News (Sept. 13) in which schools were graded according to standards ranging from on-field to academic performance.
? Notre Dame received two A’s, an A- and a B for a 3.67 GPA. The Irish finished behind only Penn State (3.92) and North Carolina (3.75). Rounding out the top 10 behind Notre Dame were Stanford, Florida, Duke, Purdue, Virginia, Nebraska and Michigan State.
? Schools were rated based on grades in four areas: “Do We Play Fair?” (Notre Dame received an A) – number of teams sponsored, their success rates, graduation rates for all sports and Title IX compliance, “Do We Graduate?” (A) – graduation rates for classes entering from 1989-92, based on the most recent statistics published by the NCAA, “Do We Rock?” ( A-) – fan support, attendance, merchandise sold, size of athletic budget, number of teams and points awarded in Sears Directors’ Cup competition, “Do We Win?” (B) – wins, regular-season conference championships, conference tournament championships, rank in The Sporting News polls and performance in NCAA tournaments.
|1. Penn State||A||A||A||A-||3.92|
|2. North Carolina||B+||A-||A||A||3.75|
|3. Notre Dame||A||A||A-||B||3.67|
? Notre Dame joined the University of Michigan and the University of Miami in a unique distinction concerning recent draft selections in the four traditional “major” professional sports. Over the course of the 1998 and 1999 pro drafts, Notre Dame, Michigan and Miami were the only schools in the nation that produced a first-round selection in three of the four major sports.
? Notre Dame pitcher Brad Lidge was a first-round selection of the Houston Astros in the ’98 Major League Baseball draft (with the 17th pick) while forward Pat Garrity was a first-round pick in the ’98 National Basketball Association draft (the Milwaukee Bucks took him with the 19th pick but Garrity went to the Phoenix Suns in a three-team trade with Dallas).
? Notre Dame completed the “two-year trifecta” in the ’99 National Football League draft, when the New York Giants selected offensive lineman Luke Petitgout with the 19th pick of the first round.
? Notre Dame nearly pulled off an unmatched four-sport sweep by placing a first rounder in the ’99 National Hockey League draft, but center David Inman slipped to the second round, as the 59th pick by the New York Rangers.
? Michigan produced ’98 first rounders in the NFL, NHL and NBA drafts, in addition to a ’99 NHL first-round pick. Miami had a first-round NFL pick in both ’98 and ’99, plus a first-rounder in the ’98 MLB and ’99 NBA drafts.
BIG CROWDS EVERYWHERE
Prior to the 1999 Stanford game, Notre Dame has played in front of capacity crowds in 118 of the previous 136 games (with a near-sellout on Nov. 28, 1998, at USC). Each of the first 10 regular-season games involving Notre Dame during the 1998 season was played in front of a sellout crowd, in addition to the first 11 games in 1999.