BlueAndGold - What They're Saying: Notre Dame Fighting Irish 40, BC 7
football Edit

What They're Saying: Notre Dame Fighting Irish 40, BC 7

A look at what the media is saying after Notre Dame's 40-7 victory versus Boston College.

Holiday Pick-It Sale - Save Big On A BlueandGold.com Subscription And Get Free Gear Too (click here for details!)

WR Chase Claypool had a big game against Boston College
WR Chase Claypool had a big game against Boston College (@ndfootball)

Lou Somogyi, Blue & Gold Illustrated: On Paper Revisited: Notre Dame Vs. Boston College

Breaking down the Boston College Running Game Vs. Notre Dame Run Defense

Hands down the top headline was Boston College entered the game No. 5 nationally in rushing with 282.2 yards per game, and it finished with only 128. AJ Dillion ranked third nationally with 145 yards per contest but managed only 56 on 14 carries (4.0 average), while David Bailey was averaging 77 yards rushing per contest and managed merely 26 on 10 carries.

Similar to the Navy game the week prior, where the nation's No. 1 rushing offense had 79 yards on the ground on 29 carries while falling behind 38-0, and finished 77 yards under its average, Notre Dame had full confidence in covering the flanks and forcing the Eagles to throw when they had to, not when they wanted to, by loading up the front.

In the first three quarters while building a 33-7 lead, Notre Dame put the Eagles into six situations of third-and-eight or longer, and only one was converted, a 24-yard scramble by quarterback Dennis Grosel that was easily the top running play of the game for them.

Advantage: Notre Dame

Vince DeDario, Blue & Gold Illustrated: Thoughts From The Press Box: Breaking Down Notre Dame's Victory over BC

From an outsider’s perspective when you look at the final score you would say Notre Dame did exactly what they should have winning 40-7 over a Boston College team that was outmatched on both sides of the ball, especially the Eagles defense which ranked 128 out of 130 in total defense on the season. If one takes a closer look at how this game transpired then the luster falls off of the 33 point win.

Offense

After the final possession heroics against Virginia Tech, the impressive run game against Duke, and the air raid explosion versus Navy expectations were high coming into this game against Boston College who’s defense leads a lot to be desired. The first half was an absolute struggle.

Senior quarterback Ian Book at times fell back into his old ways of scrambling too soon, not going through his reads, and just not being accurate with the ball. At one point, Book was so flustered that he bailed out of the pocket on a third down with three man pressure even though the pocket was clean. He missed Cole Kmet on at least two different occasions where he would have scored touchdowns. There were several times where he decided to scramble and ended up finding receivers down field and looked good doing it. The problem I had was if he stayed in the pocket he had open receivers within the natural progression of the play. It was not all bad for Book as he was able to stand tall in the pocket at times and go through his reads and fire off strikes for first downs in windows that were tiny at best. He made some clutch third down throws showed what he is capable of but he lacked the consistency for most of the day.

That is the overall maddening part of Book’s game. At times he looks like a Heisman Trophy candidate distributing the ball to all his different weapons and doing it with apparent ease and then with the same drive he looks flustered and nervous and his play follows suit. Lucky for Notre Dame, they played a porous Boston College defense that allowed him to play less than perfect.

The offensive line did not do Ian Book any favors today either. They struggled to pick up simple line games and stunts, even versus three man pressure. As I mentioned above because of the pressure Book was uncomfortable when there was no pressure even on him. There were times for all five linemen that they looked bad, even the running backs struggled in pass protection. At one point in the game a defensive line split an offensive lineman and Tony Jones, Jr. and was able to get to Book. Too many times blitzers came in untouched. That has a lot to do with the communication of the line as well as execution.

Douglas Farmer, NBC Sports: No. 16 Notre Dame continues roll with Senior Day rout of Boston College

PLAYER OF THE GAME

The confidence at halftime belies how easily Notre Dame could have been in worse position. Without Doerer proving reliable this season — 12-of-14 this year — the 16-7 lead would have been much more tenuous.

“Jon Doerer was outstanding during that period of time when we were a little uneven where he kicked field goals and kept us ahead of would have been momentum swings,” Kelly said. “Those were big kicks for us.”

The Irish likely would have won regardless; the yardage differential and plus-two turnover margin suggest complete control of the game. But missed field goals leading to bound nerves could have produced a different mood in the decisive third quarter.

TURNING POINT OF THE GAME

When Kareem knocked the ball away from Boston College junior quarterback Dennis Grosel — praised in recent weeks for avoiding costly mistakes, that was Grosel’s second fumble of the day and he would add an interception — White did not have to work hard to recover it. It set up Notre Dame at the Eagles’ 40-yard line.

With only a 19-7 lead, the Irish had not yet put the outcome beyond doubt, but the ensuing drive showed how smoothly things would be moving forward, and should have been all along. Five of the six plays gained at least six yards, the only one failing to do so an incompletion. Somehow Boston College forgot to cover Kmet, making Book’s touchdown toss not only obvious but easy.

“We were just converting,” Kmet said. “Converting third downs, making more plays, keeping drives going. That was a big deal, making big plays when we needed to.”

Mike Berardino, Indy Star: Notre Dame football blasts Boston College on senior day

Remember Cole Kmet? After being limited to just two catches for nine total yards in the past two games, Notre Dame’s tight end re-asserted himself against the Eagles.

Kmet had four catches for 60 yards in the first half alone. He also got behind the defense to draw a 15-yard pass interference penalty that moved the Irish into field goal range just before halftime.

Remember Cole Kmet? After being limited to just two catches for nine total yards in the past two games, Notre Dame’s tight end re-asserted himself against the Eagles.

Kmet had four catches for 60 yards in the first half alone. He also got behind the defense to draw a 15-yard pass interference penalty that moved the Irish into field goal range just before halftime.

TWITTER REACTION

----

Talk about it inside Rockne’s Roundtable

Subscribe to our podcast on iTunes

• Learn more about our print and digital publication, Blue & Gold Illustrated.

• Follow us on Twitter: @BGINews, @BGI_LouSomogyi, @BGI_MikeSinger, @CoachDeDario and @AndrewMentock.

• Like us on Facebook.