Halftime Score: Notre Dame 20 Kansas 13
Final Score: Notre Dame 48 Kansas 13
Today’s contest against Kansas marks the earliest the Irish have ever opened the season. The previous earliest opener was on August 31, 1989, when the Irish defeated Virginia, 36-13, in the Kickoff Classic at Giants Stadium in the Meadowlands.
Today’s game marks the 143rd consecutive sellout in Notre Dame Stadium (the first 130 coming at the old 59,075 capacity and 12 during the 1997 and ’98 seasons at the 80,012 capacity). This game marks Notre Dame’s 191st sellout in the last 192 games dating back to 1964.
With the win, the Irish lead the all-time series against Kansas 4-1-1. The Irish have won the last three meetings between the two teams.
Notre Dame won its fourth consecutive season opener and its 12th in the last 13 years. The Irish are now 67-9-3 in season openers. Notre Dame also won its fourth straight home opener and 11th in the last 14 years.
Notre Dame has now won 10 consecutive home games, the longest since a 21-game streak from September 19, 1987-October 20, 1990. The Irish have also won 15 of their last 17 regular-season games.
The Irish improved to 35-15-2 against members of the Big XII Conference and 3-0 against member schools since the formation of the league.
Notre Dame’s 20 first-quarter points are the most for the Irish since scoring 21 against Stanford in the opening quarter on October 3, 1998. It also marks the most points Kansas has given up in a quarter since surrendering 20 points to Missouri in the second quarter on September 12, 1998.
Notre Dame’s 48 points were the most for an Irish squad since scoring 52 points against Boston College on Ocober 25, 1997 at Notre Dame Stadium. It was the biggest margin of victory (35 points) for the Irish during the Bob Davie era, besting the 1997 win over BC (32 point margin).
Four of Notre Dame’s seven touchdowns came after Kansas turnovers.
Notre Dame finished the day with 363 yards rushing, the most rushing yards since November 9, 1996, when the Irish had 451 yards in a 48-21 win over Boston College in Chestnut Hill, Mass.
Notre Dame sophomore Rocky Boiman’s fumble recovery with 12:33 remaining in the first quarter was the first of his career. Boiman also recovered Clifford Jefferson’s blocked field goal attempt in the third quarter
Irish senior QB Jarious Jackson’s 38-yard rushing touchdown in the first quarter was the seventh rushing and longest touchdown run of his career. His previous high was 22 yards against Stanford on October 3, 1998. It was also the second-longest run from scrimmage in Jackson’s career. His longest run is 43 yards against Baylor on October 31, 1998.
Notre Dame senior Deveron Harper’s 22-yard interception for a touchdown was the first interception of his career and the first interception returned for a touchdown since Bobbie Howard returned one 89 yards against LSU on November 21, 1998.
Notre Dame senior DE Antwon Jones’ fumble recovery in the first quarter was the the first of his career. Senior FS Deke Cooper caused the fumble. Last year, Cooper led the Irish with three forced fumbles.
Irish sophomore QB Arnaz Battle played the first series of the second quarter for the Irish. Jarious Jackson finished the first quarter 4-for-6 passing for 35 yards and had three rushes for 44 yards and one touchdown. Jackson returned for the second series of the second quarter and played until the second to last series of the fourth quarter when Battle returned under center.
Notre Dame senior kicker Jim Sanson missed two field goals (miss-43 yards, blocked-37 yards) and an extra point in the first half. Sanson has missed his last five field goal attempts. Kansas sophomore kicker Joe Garcia missed an extra point at the end of the second quarter and had a field-goal attempt blocked in the third quarter
Kansas freshman DE Justin Sands intercepted Jarious Jackson with 1:10 remaining in the second quarter. It was the first interception of his career. Junior DB Carl Nesmith, a transfer from Butler County CC, intercepted Jackson early in the third quarter for his first career INT for the Jayhawks.
Jarious Jackson’s threw three interceptions on the day. It marks the first time in Jackson’s career he has thrown more than two INT’s in a game. Jackson threw only six interceptions the entire 1998 season.
Notre Dame sophomore TB Tony Fisher scored on a two-yard carry with 9:02 remaining in the third quarter for his first career touchdown. Fisher then scored his second touchdown on a 46-yard run, the longest run of his career. Fisher ran for a career-high 111 yards on the day, the first time he has topped the 100-yard mark in his career.
Notre Dame junior ILB Anthony Denman returned a ZacWegner fumble for a touchdown with 7:29 to go in the third quarrter. It was the first fumble recovery of his career and first career touchdown.
It is the first time Notre Dame has scored two defensive touchdowns since it had two (Lamont Bryant fumble recovery and a Bobbie Howard 89-yard INT return) against LSU on November 21, 1998 (in the previous Irish home game). It was the first fumble recovery for a touchdown since Bryant returned a fumble 13 yards against LSU on November 21, 1998.
Kansas junior kicker Joey Pelfanio booted a 75-yard punt in the third quarter. That was the longest punt by a Notre Dame opponent since Steve Carr of Air Force and Bill Marinangel of Vanderbilt booted 70 yard punts in 1995.
Notre Dame used a balanced rushing attack as it had three rushers (Jarious Jackson-85, Tony Fisher-111, Arnaz Battle-75) over 50 yards for the first time since the Stanford game on October 3, 1998, when Jackson (100), Autry Denson (88) and Jamie Spencer (80) all rushed for over 50 yards.
Irish sophomore QB Arnaz Battle’s 74-yard touchdown run was the first touchdown passing or rushing in his career and the longest run of his career.
The Notre Dame defense had shut out the opposition in 11 of the last 18 quarters (one at Boston College, four versus Navy, three at USC and three versus Kansas).