2011 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team

The 2011 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team represented the University of Notre Dame in the 2011 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The team was coached by Brian Kelly and played its home games at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Indiana. They compete as an independent. They finished the season 8–5. They were invited to the Champs Sports Bowl where they were defeated by Florida State 18–14.

2011 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football
Notre Dame Fighting Irish logo.svg
ConferenceIndependent
2011 record8–5
Head coachBrian Kelly (2nd season)
Offensive coordinatorCharley Molnar (2nd season)
Offensive schemeSpread
Defensive coordinatorBob Diaco (2nd season)
Base defense3–4
CaptainHarrison Smith
Home stadiumNotre Dame Stadium
(Capacity: 80,795)
Seasons
← 2010
2012 →
2011 NCAA Division I FBS independents football records
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
BYU               10 3  
Notre Dame               8 5  
Navy               5 7  
Army               3 9  
Rankings from AP Poll

Pre-seasonEdit

Coaching changesEdit

Kerry Cooks took over the cornerback position after coaching the outside linebackers the previous season. Defensive coordinator Bob Diaco, who also coaches the inside linebackers, will coach the entire linebacking corps moving forward. Chuck Martin will focus solely on the safeties, while presumably assuming his role as the program’s recruiting coordinator.

Player changesEdit

Departing playersEdit

Star tight end Kyle Rudolph chose to forgo his final year of eligibility, and enter the 2011 NFL Draft. The Irish also lost a number of important seniors, including four-year starter defensive lineman Ian Williams, linebackers Kerry Neal and Brian Smith, cornerback Darrin Walls, running backs Robert Hughes and Armando Allen, Wide Receiver Duval Kamara, and offensive lineman Matt Romine and Chris Stewart, all to graduation. Redshirt junior quarterback Nate Montana left the program in early February 2011, and transferred to the University of Montana.[1] Junior guard Alex Bullard transferred to his hometown state of Tennessee and will play for the University of Tennessee, citing the desire to be closer to home following the loss of a family member.[2]

RecruitingEdit

With his first full recruiting class, Brian Kelly added 23 prospects to the football team, including the addition of five early-enrollees: defensive end Aaron Lynch, outside linebacker Ishaq Williams, offensive lineman Brad Carrico, quarterback Everett Golson, and kicker Kyle Brindza.

OutlookEdit

Award candidatesEdit

The following players were announced to award watch lists prior to the start of the 2011 season:

ScheduleEdit

[7]

DateTimeOpponentRankSiteTVResultAttendance
September 33:30 p.m.South FloridaNo. 16NBCL 20–2380,795
September 108:00 p.m.at MichiganESPNL 31–35114,804
September 173:30 p.m.No. 15 Michigan State
NBCW 31–1380,795
September 2412:00 p.m.at PittsburghABCW 15–1265,050
October 18:00 p.m.at PurdueESPNW 38–1061,555
October 83:30 p.m.Air Force
  • Notre Dame Stadium
  • South Bend, IN
NBCW 59–3380,795
October 227:30 p.m.USC
NBCL 17–3180,795
October 293:30 p.m.Navy
NBCW 56–1480,795
November 58:00 p.m.at Wake ForestABCW 24–1736,307
November 127:30 p.m.vs. MarylandNBCW 45–2170,251
November 194:00 p.m.Boston CollegeNo. 24
  • Notre Dame Stadium
  • South Bend, IN (Holy War)
NBCW 16–1480,795
November 268:00 p.m.at No. 4 StanfordNo. 22ABCL 14–2850,360[8]
December 295:30 p.m.vs. No. 25 Florida StateESPN/ESPN 3DL 14–1868,305

PersonnelEdit

Coaching staffEdit

Name Position Year at Notre Dame Alma mater (Year)
Brian Kelly Head coach 2nd Assumption (1982)
Bob Diaco Defensive coordinator/linebackers 2nd Iowa (1995)
Charley Molnar Offensive coordinator/quarterbacks 2nd Lock Haven (1984)
Chuck Martin Safeties /recruiting coordinator 2nd Millikin (1990)
Mike Elston Defensive line / special teams coordinator 2nd Michigan (1998)
Ed Warinner Offensive line 2nd Mount Union (1984)
Mike Denbrock Tight ends 2nd (second stint) Grand Valley State (1987)
Tony Alford Wide receivers 3rd Colorado State (1992)
Tim Hinton Running backs 2nd Wilmington (1982)
Kerry Cooks Cornerbacks 2nd Iowa (2000)
Paul Longo Strength and conditioning 2nd Wayne State University (1981)

RosterEdit

2011 Notre Dame Fighting Irish
2011 Notre Dame Fighting Irish roster from the University of Notre Dame Athletic Site

Quarterbacks

Running Backs

Wide Receivers

  • 14 Luke Massa – Sophomore
  • 16 DaVaris DanielsFreshman
  • 41 Matthias Farley – Freshman
  • 38 Nick Fitzpatrick – Junior
  • 3 Michael FloydSenior
  • 81 John Goodman – Senior
  • 7 T. J. JonesSophomore
  • 37 Eric Lee – Freshman
  • 39 Ryan Liebscher – Sophomore
  • 6 Theo RiddickJunior
  • 85 Ryan Sharpley – Senior
  • 87 Daniel Smith – Sophomore
  • 9 Robby Toma – Junior
  • 1 Deion Walker – Senior
 

Tight Ends

  • 80 Tyler EifertJunior
  • 88 Jake Golic – Junior
  • 18 Ben KoyackFreshman
  • 86 Arturo Martinez – Sophomore
  • 83 Mike Ragone – 5th Year Senior
  • 82 Alex Welch – Sophomore

Offensive Line

  • 56 Brad Carrico – Freshman
  • 51 Bruce Heggie – Sophomore
  • 72 Nick Martin – Freshman
  • 62 Matt Tansey – Junior

Offensive Tackles

  • 73 Lane Clelland – Senior
  • 75 Taylor Dever – 5th Year Senior
  • 77 Matt Hegarty – Freshman
  • 74 Christian Lombard – Sophomore
  • 71 Dennis Mahoney – Senior
  • 70 Zack MartinJunior
  • 64 Tate Nichols – Sophomore
  • 79 Jordan Prestwood – Freshman #

Offensive Guards

Centers

Defensive Ends

 

Defensive Tackles

  • 98 Sean Cwynar – Junior

Nose Guards

  • 99 Brandon Newman – Senior
  • 9 Louis Nix IIISophomore
  • 92 Tyler Stockton – Junior
  • 94 Hafis Williams – Senior

Linebackers

  • 93 Connor Little – Freshman

Inside Linebackers

  • 44 Carlo Calabrese – Junior
  • 48 Dan FoxJunior
  • 59 Jarrett Grace – Freshman
  • 54 Anthony McDonald – Senior
  • 8 Kendall Moore – Sophomore
  • 50 Sean Oxley – Senior
  • 36 David Posluszny – Senior
  • 56 Anthony Rabasa – Freshman
  • 38 Joe Schmidt – Freshman
  • 55 Prince ShemboSophomore
  • 5 Manti Te'oJunior
  • 53 Justin Utupo – Sophomore

Outside Linebackers

  • 30 Ben Councell – Freshman
  • 46 Steve Filer – Senior
  • 45 Darius FlemingSenior
  • 47 Jonathan Frantz – Senior
  • 58 Troy NiklasFreshman
  • 13 Danny Spond – Sophomore
  • 1 Ishaq Williams – Freshman

Defensive Backs

  • 35 Joe Romano – Sophomore

Cornerbacks

  • 43 Josh Atkinson – Freshman
  • 12 Robert BlantonSenior
  • 21 Jalen Brown – Freshman
  • 4 Gary Gray – 5th Year Senior
  • 2 Bennett JacksonSophomore
  • 42 Nick Lezynski – 5th Year Senior
  • 32 Andrew Plaska – Senior
  • 39 Ryan Sheehan – Senior
  • 23 Lo Wood – Sophomore
 

Safeties

  • 49 Blake Breslau – Junior
  • 40 Connor Cavalaris – Freshman
  • 28 Austin Collinsworth – Sophomore
  • 34 Eilar Hardy – Freshman
  • 15 Dan McCarthy – Senior
  • 17 Zeke MottaJunior
  • 24 Chris SalviSenior
  • 26 Jamoris SlaughterSenior
  • 22 Harrison Smith5th Year Senior

Kickers/Punters

  • 27 Kyle BrindzaFreshman
  • 37 Mike Greico – Senior
  • 97 David Ruffer – 5th Year Senior
  • 40 Nick Tausch – Junior
  • 35 Ben Turk – Junior

Long Snappers

  • 60 Jordan Cowart – Junior
  • 50 Ryan Kavanaugh – Senior

# Incoming Transfer, Must sit out a year

Game summariesEdit

South FloridaEdit

[9]

South Florida at Notre Dame
1 234Total
Bulls 13 307 23
Fighting Irish 0 0713 20
  • Date: September 3
  • Location: Notre Dame Stadium
    South Bend, IN
  • Game start: 3:30 EST
  • Elapsed time: 5:59
  • Game attendance: 80,795
  • Game weather: 93 degrees, W 6 MPH, 2 Severe Weather Delays
  • Referee: Dennis Hennigan Big East
  • TV announcers (NBC): Dan Hicks, Mike Mayock & Alex Flanagan

MichiganEdit

  • Game Captain: Zach Martin
Notre Dame at Michigan "Under The Lights"
(Michigan – Notre Dame rivalry game)
1 234Total
Fighting Irish 14 377 31
Wolverines 0 7028 35
  • Date: September 10
  • Location: Michigan Stadium
    Ann Arbor, MI
  • Game start: 8:00 PM EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:30
  • Game attendance: 114,804
  • Game weather: High 60s, ESE 4 MPH
  • Referee: Tom Tomczyk Big East
  • TV announcers (ESPN): Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit & Erin Andrews

Michigan StateEdit

  • Game Captain: Ethan Johnson
Michigan State at Notre Dame
(Megaphone Trophy)
1 234Total
Spartans 3 703 13
Fighting Irish 14 773 31
  • Date: September 17
  • Location: Notre Dame Stadium
    South Bend, IN
  • Game start: 3:30 PM EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:19
  • Game attendance: 80,795
  • Game weather: 68 Degrees, SE 8 MPH
  • Referee: John O'Neill Big 10
  • TV announcers (NBC): Tom Hammond, Mike Mayock & Alex Flanagan

PittsburghEdit

  • Game Captain: Taylor Dever
Notre Dame at Pittsburgh
1 234Total
Fighting Irish 0 708 15
Panthers 3 360 12

PurdueEdit

Notre Dame at Purdue
1 234Total
Notre Dame 14 7143 38
Purdue 0 307 10
  • Date: October 1
  • Location: Ross-Ade Stadium
    West Lafayette, IN
  • Game start: 8:00 PM EST EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:21
  • Game attendance: 61,555
  • Game weather: 50 Degrees, NNW 4 MPH
  • Referee: Jerry McGinn Big East
  • TV announcers (ESPN): Brad Nessler, Todd Blackledge & Holly Rowe

[10]

Air ForceEdit

Air Force at Notre Dame
1 234Total
Falcons 3 13017 33
Fighting Irish 21 21710 59
  • Date: October 8
  • Location: Notre Dame Stadium
    South Bend, IN
  • Game start: 3:30 EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:23
  • Game attendance: 80,795
  • Game weather: 81 degrees, S 9 MPH
  • Referee: Greg Burks Mountain West Conference
  • TV announcers (NBC): Tom Hammond, Mike Mayock & Alex Flanagan

USCEdit

USC at Notre Dame
1 234Total
Trojans 14 377 31
Fighting Irish 0 1007 17
  • Date: October 22
  • Location: Notre Dame Stadium
    South Bend, IN
  • Game start: 7:30 EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:10
  • Game attendance: 80,795
  • Game weather: 36 degrees
  • Referee: Land Clark Pac-12
  • TV announcers (NBC): Tom Hammond, Mike Mayock & Alex Flanagan

NavyEdit

Game Captain: Chris Salvi

Navy at Notre Dame
1 234Total
Midshipmen 0 707 14
Fighting Irish 14 21714 56
  • Date: October 29
  • Location: Notre Dame Stadium
    South Bend, IN
  • Game start: 3:30 EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:06
  • Game attendance: 80,795
  • Game weather: 54 Degrees
  • Referee: Ron Cherry
  • TV announcers (NBC): Tom Hammond, Mike Mayock & Alex Flanagan

Wake ForestEdit

Game Captain: Robert Blanton

Notre Dame at Wake Forest
1 234Total
Fighting Irish 10 0140 24
Demon Deacons 10 700 17
  • Date: November 5
  • Location: BB&T Field
    Winston-Salem, NC
  • Game start: 8:00 PM EST
  • Game attendance: 36,307
  • Referee: Dennis Hennigan Big East
  • Television network: ABC/ESPN2

MarylandEdit

Game Captain: Darius Fleming

Notre Dame vs Maryland
(Shamrock Series)
1 234Total
Terrapins 0 7014 21
Fighting Irish 10 14147 45
  • Date: November 12
  • Location: Fed Ex Field
    Landover, MD
  • Game start: 7:30 PM EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:03
  • Game attendance: 70,251
  • Game weather: 51 Degrees
  • Referee: Tom Tomczyk Big East
  • TV announcers (NBC): Tom Hammond, Mike Mayock & Alex Flanagan

Despite the game being played only 12 miles from the Maryland campus, both end zones read "Notre Dame" and the majority of the fans in attendance were supporting the Fighting Irish. Notre Dame wore their green jerseys along with large green shamrocks on their side of their gold helmets.[11]

Boston CollegeEdit

Notre Dame vs Boston College
1 234Total
Eagles 0 707 14
Fighting Irish 10 303 16
  • Date: November 19
  • Location: Notre Dame Stadium
    South Bend, IN
  • Game start: 4:00 PM EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:22
  • Game attendance: 80,795
  • Game weather: 51
  • Referee: Brad Allen ACC
  • TV announcers (NBC): Tom Hammond, Mike Mayock & Alex Flanagan

StanfordEdit

Game Captain: Taylor Dever

Notre Dame vs Stanford
1 234Total
Fighting Irish 0 077 14
Cardinal 7 1407 28
  • Date: November 26
  • Location: Stanford Stadium
    Stanford, CA
  • Game start: 8:00 PM EST
  • Elapsed time: 3:23
  • Game attendance: 50,360
  • Game weather: 58 Degrees
  • Referee: John Mcdaid Big East
  • TV announcers (ABC): Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit

Florida StateEdit

Game Captain: Michael Floyd

Notre Dame vs Florida State
1 234Total
Seminoles 0 0315 18
Fighting Irish 7 070 14
  • Date: December 29
  • Location: Citrus Bowl
    Orlando, FL
  • Game start: 5:30 EST
  • Referee: Reggie Smith Big 12 Conference
  • TV announcers (ESPN): Joe Tessitore (Play-by-Play)
    Rod Gilmore (Color Analyst)
    Holly Rowe (Sideline)

RankingsEdit

Ranking movements
Legend: ██ Increase in ranking. ██ Decrease in ranking.
NR = Not ranked. RV = Received votes. т = Tied with team above or below. ( ) = First place votes.
Week
Poll Pre 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Final 
AP 16 NR NR RV RV RV RV RV RV NR RV RV 24 22 RV  
Coaches 18 NR NR RV NR RV RV RV RV RV RV RV 25 24 RV  
Harris Not released RV RV RV NR RV RV RV 23 RV Not released 
BCS Not released NR NR NR NR NR NR 22 NR Not released

AwardsEdit

National awards

Michael Floyd (semifinalist)[12]
Tyler Eifert (finalist)[13]

All-Americans

Name AP AFCA FWAA SN WCFF Athlon[14] CBS CFN ESPN PFW Rivals Scout SI Yahoo
George Atkinson III, KR Hon. Mention
Tyler Eifert, TE 2 2 Hon. Mention 3 1 Hon. Mention 3
Michael Floyd, WR Hon. Mention Hon. Mention
Manti Te'o, LB 2 2 2 2 2 2
†denotes consensus selection. NCAA recognizes AP, AFCA, FWAA, SN and WCFF 1st teams for consensus selections      Source:

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Nate Montana to transfer from Notre Dame to Montana". usatoday.com. 2011-02-15. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
  2. ^ "Notre Dame lineman Alex Bullard transferring to Tennessee after death of father". govolsextra.com. 2011-01-07. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "More Notre Dame Football Players Selected To Preseason Watch Lists". UND.cstv.com. 2011-07-15. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
  4. ^ a b c "Trio Of Irish Players Make Maxwell, Bednarik Watch Lists". UND.cstv.com. 2011-07-05. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
  5. ^ "Tyler Eifert Named To John Mackey Award Watch List". UND.cstv.com. 2011-07-06. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Notre Dame Players Littered On Preseason Watch Lists". UND.cstv.com. 2011-07-08. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
  7. ^ http://www.und.com/sports/m-footbl/sched/nd-m-footbl-sched.html
  8. ^ "Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. Stanford Cardinal Box Score". ESPN.com. November 26, 2011.
  9. ^ "No. 16 Irish Drop Season Opener To USF, 23–20." UND.com. Retrieved 2011-10-21.
  10. ^ [1]
  11. ^ [2]
  12. ^ "Floyd named Biletnikoff semifinalist". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2012-12-11.
  13. ^ "Tyler Eifert Named Finalist For John Mackey Award". und.com. Retrieved 2012-12-11.
  14. ^ "Athlon's 2011 College Football All-America Team". athlonsports.com. Retrieved 2012-12-11.

External linksEdit

  Media related to 2011 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team at Wikimedia Commons