Irish hope to ride Book’s arm to second straight CFP berth
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — For Notre Dame to reach its second straight College Football Playoff, it may have to run the table behind quarterback Ian Book.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame's latest run at a national title under coach Brian Kelly ended with another rude awakening.
"We got a taste of what it's like to be in the playoffs," said...
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Ian Book came into spring practice with the idea of being out of his comfort zone.
At a school that has produced its share of legendary quarterbacks, the 6-foot,...
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Nine sessions into spring practice, coach Brian Kelly has an idea how his depth chart is settling in at running back, wide receiver and cornerback.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — In two of his nine previous seasons at Notre Dame, Brian Kelly and the Fighting Irish have had a legitimate shot at the national championship and fallen short.
Cotton Bowl: Can Notre Dame measure up to No. 2 Clemson?
DALLAS (AP) — The question was about sustaining high-level success in college football and Dabo Swinney's answer lasted 3 minutes, 40 seconds. Brevity is not the Clemson coach's strong suit.
Swinney talked about how people make the program, continuity leads to consistency, and how it can't just be about the results on the scoreboard.
Notre Dame’s Kelly wins Dodd Trophy as coach of the year
ATLANTA (AP) — Notre Dame's Brian Kelly has won the Dodd Trophy as coach of the year.
Kelly also was honored as The Associated Press Coach of the Year this month.
He has guided the No. 3 Fighting Irish to a 12-0 season and a chance to compete for the national championship. Notre Dame faces No. 2 Clemson in the Cotton Bowl playoff semifinal on Saturday.
Notre Dame’s Kelly announces 23-player class
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly announced a 23-player recruiting class Wednesday and said it filled a lot of his program's needs, no matter how the Fighting Irish fare in the College Football Playoff.
"Offensive line and defensive line (were) really the immediate focus," Kelly said. "We were looking for length and athleticism on defense, and then, from an offensive standpoint, continue to build speed on the perimeter."
AP Coach of the Year: Notre Dame’s Kelly wins for 2nd time
Notre Dame's Brian Kelly is The Associated Press college football Coach of the Year and the third coach to win the award twice since it was established in 1998.
Kelly received 16 of 58 first-place votes from AP college football poll voters and 81 total points. Alabama's Nick Saban was second with 16 first-place votes and 66 points and Central Florida first-year coach Josh Heupel was third with 33 points (five first-place votes).
Heupel, Kelly, Saban are finalists for AP coach of year
UCF's Josh Heupel, Notre Dame's Brian Kelly and Alabama's Nick Saban are the finalists for The Associated Press national college football coach of the year after leading their teams to unbeaten regular seasons.
Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly favors expanding CFP to 8 teams
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — If it's any consolation to Ohio State, Washington, Georgia and UCF, Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly feels their pain — somewhat — of not being in the College Football Playoff.
"We're forcing out a conference champion," Kelly said Saturday before the No. 3 Irish went through their first post-finals workout for the Dec. 29 Cotton Bowl against No. 2 Clemson (13-0) in a CFP semifinal.
Kelly relishes Irish role as playoff ‘new kids on the block’
ATLANTA (AP) — Sitting beside Nick Saban, Lincoln Riley and Dabo Swinney at a gathering of the College Football Playoff coaches, Notre Dame's Brian Kelly referred to his team as "the new kids on the block."
The description fit. Saban has guided No. 1 Alabama, the defending champion, to its fifth straight playoff. Swinney and Clemson are making their fourth straight appearance. Riley's Oklahoma team is in the playoff for the third time in four years.
Notre Dame’s faith in Kelly rewarded with 12-0 season
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two years ago, Notre Dame left the LA Memorial Coliseum with its program at a crossroads following a 4-8 season. Even though most thought coach Brian Kelly was on the hot seat, athletic director Jack Swarbrick had confidence that Kelly could turn things around.
Tranquill leads No. 3 Notre Dame to cusp of playoff berth
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — The rectangular medal with the Notre Dame leprechaun etched on it along with the inscription "Effort Toughness Leadership Commitment" is on a chain around the neck of 65-year-old Keith Penrod, a gift from linebacker Drue Tranquill.
Penrod, familiar to many fans for his lifelong devotion to Notre Dame athletics, has battled cerebral palsy since birth but has also recently been rehabbing a broken ankle that has kept him away the team and players he loves.
No. 3 Notre Dame slams Syracuse 36-3 at Yankee Stadium
NEW YORK (AP) — The band was an Aaron Judge moon shot away from the field, way up in the right-field bleachers of Yankee Stadium.
Still, the Fighting Irish lined up in the end zone/outfield and sang the alma mater — just as they would have at Notre Dame Stadium — after dispatching No. 12 Syracuse and putting themselves a step away from the College Football Playoff.
No. 3 Irish plan to start QB Book against No. 12 Syracuse
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Ian Book should be back as the No. 1 quarterback for No. 3 Notre Dame this week.
Coach Brian Kelly said Sunday that Book, who missed Notre Dame's victory against Florida State on Saturday night with an upper body injury, is expected to practice Tuesday. If there are no setbacks, Book will reclaim his starting spot over Brandon Wimbush, Kelly said.
Backup QB Wimbush, defense help No. 3 Irish dominate FSU
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — On Senior Night at frosty Notre Dame Stadium, coach Brian Kelly couldn't have been happier for senior quarterback Brandon Wimbush in No. 3 Notre Dame's 42-13 victory over Florida State.
"Brandon wants to win for Notre Dame, for his teammates," Kelly said after the senior backup threw three first-half touchdowns and fellow senior Dexter Williams ran for a career-high 202 yards while the Irish (10-0, No. 3 CFP) took advantage of two first-quarter turnovers by the Seminoles
Teammates support Wimbush as No. 3 Irish welcome Seminoles
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Sam Mustipher gets to run out of the home tunnel one final time for No. 3 Notre Dame on Saturday night against Florida State.
The graduate center just never thought he'd be snapping the ball to senior Brandon Wimbush again.
With Ian Book nursing an injury, Wimbush is expected to be the starting quarterback when the Fighting Irish (9-0, No. 3 CFP) face the Seminoles (4-5).
AP sources: Notre Dame QB Wimbush to start for ailing Book
No. 3 Notre Dame is turning back to Brandon Wimbush to keep the Fighting Irish unbeaten.
Wimbush will start at quarterback against Florida State on Saturday, a person familiar with the decision told The Associated Press, because Ian Book is nursing an upper body injury,
Irish coach Brian Kelly told reporters at his post-practice Thursday news conference that Book had been limited at practice with an upper body injury and who starts would be game-time decision. Kelly called Book day-to-day.
No. 3 Notre Dame renews rivalry with Florida State
Florida State (4-5) at No. 3 Notre Dame (9-0, No. 3 CFP), 7:30 p.m. EST (NBC).
No. 3 Notre Dame faces struggling Navy in a Navy town
No. 3 Notre Dame (7-0) vs. Navy (2-5) at San Diego, 8 p.m. ET (CBS).
Book, Boykin bail out No. 5 Notre Dame in 19-14 win vs Pitt
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Wide receiver Miles Boykin had a message for quarterback Ian Book after No. 5 Notre Dame remained unbeaten, coming from behind and then holding off Pittsburgh.
"I told him winning is fun, but let's not win like this again," the 6-foot-4 Boykin said after he caught the game-winning, 35-yard touchdown pass from Book with 5:43 remaining in the fourth quarter Saturday to secure the 19-14 win.
Pitt faces tall task against No. 5 Notre Dame’s ‘Sequoias’
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Wide receiver Miles Boykin is usually the tallest guy in a classroom at Notre Dame. The Irish offensive huddle is another matter.
"Once we had Chase (Claypool), Cole (Kmet), Alizé (Mack) and me, and I'm the smallest receiver out there on the field," said the 6-foot-4, 228-pound senior wideout, one of the shortest of six Notre Dame receivers and tight ends.
No. 5 Notre Dame knocking on the door for playoff berth
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Brian Kelly has learned to adapt over the years, even when it comes to the postgame music played in the Notre Dame locker room.
"As long as they do their job, I have no problem with having to listen to music that I'm not familiar with and routines that are a little bit different," said Kelly, whose musical tastes stop and end with Bruce Springsteen more than Jay-Z, Beyonce, Drake and Travis Scott.
Return of TB Williams brings big plays to No. 5 Notre Dame
BLACKSBURG, Va. (AP) — Dexter Williams' first rushing attempt of the season went for 45 yards and a touchdown, and the Notre Dame senior who teammates call "Juiceman" has hardly stopped running since.
Williams was at it again at Virginia Tech, ripping off a 97-yard run among three touchdowns and carving up what was the nation's fourth-best defense against the run for 178 yards on 17 carries Saturday night.
No. 6 Irish expecting raucous environment at No. 24 Hokies
Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly is already tired of "Enter Sandman," the Metallica song that plays such a major role in the way No. 24 Virginia Tech stirs up its fans for the start of football games at Lane Stadium.
The sixth-ranked Fighting Irish will get to experience the atmosphere firsthand on Saturday night.
"I can't wait to hear it one more time because it means we've started the game," Kelly said. The Fighting Irish practiced this week with noise approaching the decibels of a jet engine.
No. 6 Irish add noise to prep for visit to No. 24 Hokies
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — It is a little noisy this week around the Notre Dame campus, and it has nothing to do with the undefeated start by the sixth-ranked Fighting Irish.
It has everything to do with their first visit ever to Virginia Tech, where the 24th-ranked Hokies will enjoy the advantage of playing in a packed and deafening Lane Stadium after running onto the field to Metallica's "Enter Sandman."
Dominating defense is backbone for No. 6 Notre Dame
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Even as Notre Dame's offense has blossomed in recent weeks, the strength of the Fighting Irish is clear to their coach.
"I don't know if they get enough credit for who they are as a defense," Brian Kelly said after Saturday night's 38-17 victory over Stanford at Notre Dame Stadium.
QBs in spotlight when No. 7 Stanford visits No. 8 Notre Dame
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Last year, Stanford made an in-season quarterback change, going to K.J. Costello late in the season to boost an offense that was relying too much on the running game and help the Cardinal surge a Pac-12 title game appearance.
This season, Notre Dame has made a similar move. Fighting Irish coach Brian Kelly did not wait as long as Cardinal coach David Shaw to make the switch, and he also is still playing it coy about how committed he is to last week's starter, Ian Book.
Shaw, Kelly share success and burden leading Stanford, Irish
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Their hometowns are separated by 3,000 miles, their schools by 2,000 miles, their ages by 10 years and their experience as head coaches by about two decades.
Other than a few crisscrossed recruiting trips, Notre Dame's Brian Kelly and Stanford's David Shaw seem to share very little in common.
Yet, in terms of university mission statements, football success and academic achievement, the two head coaches couldn't be more similar.
AP Top 25 Takeaways: When good isn’t good enough, switch QBs
Making a quarterback switch with a good team can be a tricky maneuver.
But sometimes good isn't good enough.
No. 8 Notre Dame made the move Saturday at Wake Forest. No. 21 Miami did the same, with the relative ease you might expect against Florida International. Meanwhile, the QB rotation continued at No. 3 Clemson — though it's becoming more obvious the Tigers' best quarterback isn't the starter.
Book replaces Wimbush as starting QB for No. 8 Notre Dame
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — Ian Book started at quarterback for No. 8 Notre Dame in its game against Wake Forest on Saturday.
The redshirt sophomore replaced Brandon Wimbush in the starting lineup, two days after coach Brian Kelly sidestepped questions about making a change at the position.
No. 8 Irish look to get offense ‘attacking’ against Wake
No. 8 Notre Dame is looking for more big plays out of its offense. Wake Forest can't seem to stop giving them up.
The Fighting Irish hope to finally get things clicking Saturday when they visit the Demon Deacons.
Kelly toys with splitting QB duties for No. 8 Notre Dame
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — After No. 8 Notre Dame went indoors to dodge raindrops for its final preparations for Saturday's game at Wake Forest, coach Brian Kelly danced around the possibility of a new starting quarterback.
In his final meeting with the media before the game, Kelly would not say that junior Ian Book would start against the Demon Deacons or even if he had drawn even with senior Brandon Wimbush, last year's primary starter and No. 1 through Notre Dame's 3-0 start at home.
No. 8 Notre Dame holds on for 22-17 victory over Vanderbilt
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — On a day when No. 8 Notre Dame's offense remained a work in progress, the Fighting Irish got another big play from its defense to hold off upset-minded Vanderbilt in a 22-17 victory Saturday.
Safety Jalen Elliott knocked the ball loose from Vanderbilt receiver Kalija Lipscomb with 1:07 remaining to give Notre Dame a fourth-down stop against the Commodores. Last week, Elliott had a pair of interceptions in 3-0 Notre Dame's win over Ball State.
No. 8 Notre Dame wants to avoid doldrums against Vandy
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — The ho-hum victory over Ball State a week ago was a wakeup call for No. 8 Notre Dame, which doesn't plan to hit the snooze button again for Saturday's visit from Vanderbilt and talented quarterback Kyle Shurmur.
"I just think it starts with respecting your opponent and it carries itself into the way you practice," Fighting Irish coach Brian Kelly said. "This is a good opponent coming into Notre Dame Stadium. We'll have to play well."
Elliott’s thefts help No. 8 Irish hold off Ball State 24-16
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly fell on his sword after his eighth-ranked Fighting Irish struggled offensively against Ball State in what many assumed would be a tuneup game.
"I obviously didn't do a good enough job getting them up to play at the level they need to play," Kelly said. "Ball State did a great job coming into this game and doing what it needed to do. Their preparation was great, their coaching was better."
Kelly knows what Neu feels as Ball State visits No. 8 Irish
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly understands where Ball State coach Mike Neu is this week, what he's facing as the Cardinals visit the eight-ranked Fighting Irish.
In 2005, Kelly was the second-year coach at MAC member Central Michigan when his team prepared to visit Penn State to play Joe Paterno's Nittany Lions before more than 100,000 fans at Beaver Stadium. Kelly's Chippewas fell 40-3.
DE Kahlid Kareem a rising star for No. 8 Notre Dame
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — With a first-year starter at defensive end and two other linemen trying out new positions next to him, having coach Brian Kelly consistently call this position group the most stable on the Notre Dame defense seemed like a stretch of logic through the preseason.
If the 24-17 win over Michigan is any indication, Kelly knew what he had.
Notre Dame’s Kelly likes what he sees in Lea, defense
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — If 36-year-old Clark Lea had butterflies calling signals during his first game ever as a defensive coordinator, it wasn't apparent to his boss, Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly.
"You don't know if a bomb has gone off in the coach's box because he has such a calm demeanor at all times," Kelly said Sunday, a day after No. 12 Notre Dame's 24-17 victory over No. 14 Michigan. "As you know, he very stable in all situations. It makes it very easy to work with Clark in communication."
No. 12 Notre Dame loses DB Crawford for season with injury
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame defensive back Shaun Crawford will miss the season with a left knee injury suffered in practice this week.
Coach Brian Kelly said Thursday that Crawford tore an ACL during one-on-one drills Tuesday.
Crawford, a senior, was set to be the team's top nickel back. The 12th-ranked Fighting Irish open against No. 14 Michigan on Saturday night.
At Notre Dame, Kelly and Swarbrick provide rare stability
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Brian Kelly has coached 103 games at Notre Dame and athletic director Jack Swarbrick has attended every single news conference afterward.
The two will often have a brief chat before Kelly talks with reporters and they will usually leave together. Swarbrick is not interested so much in what Kelly has to say about the play calling or the quarterback's performance.
Notre Dame QB Wimbush will start against No. 14 Michigan
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Brandon Wimbush won't need to look over his shoulder Saturday night when No. 12 Notre Dame hosts No. 14 Michigan in the season opener for both teams.
Coach Brian Kelly reiterated the senior is his No. 1 quarterback.
"Brandon's our starter," Kelly said Tuesday. "We're going to go into the game that he needs to win the game for us."
Notre Dame receivers reaching for new heights
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Be it on the field or in the classroom, Notre Dame teammates Miles Boykin and Julian Love can't seem to put aside their competition.
Boykin, a senior wide receiver and the game MVP last January in Notre Dame's 21-17 win over LSU in the Citrus Bowl, can't wait to catch touchdown passes over Love in practice or out-design his rival in ceramics class each Friday.
Wimbush ignoring pressure while leading Notre Dame offense
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — How quickly Brandon Wimbush forgets how his 2017 season ended could determine how successful Notre Dame is in 2018.
The senior understands what being the Notre Dame quarterback entails — the echoes of Bertelli, Lujack, Huarte, Theismann, Clements, Montana and Rice never end.
"When you play quarterback at the University of Notre Dame, there's not a bigger position in the country," Wimbush said. "You feel like you have the weight of the world on your shoulders."
Notre Dame defense stronger, deeper in Lea’s second season
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly thinks his players' familiarity with new coordinator Clark Lea's defense will breed contempt for the opposition this fall.
The 4-2-5 defense that former coordinator Mike Elko and Lea brought with them from Wake Forest helped Notre Dame rebound from a 4-8 campaign in 2016 to a 10-3 finish a year ago.
CULVER, Ind. (AP) — This small town in northern Indiana annually produces two things when the calendar turns to August: Corn and Notre Dame offensive linemen.
Where sports icons Roger Penske and George Steinbrenner once marched as students, the Culver Academies are where Irish coach Brian Kelly witnessed assistant coach Harry Hiestand seed, nurture and harvest future NFL first-round linemen.
Irish LB Coney pleads guilty to marijuana possession
ROCHESTER, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame senior middle linebacker Te'von Coney pleaded guilty to possession of marijuana Tuesday and was given a year of probation for an incident that happened nearly two years ago.
Fulton County Superior Court Judge Wayne Steele accepted a plea deal and put Coney on probation from 363 days, suspending a 180-day jail sentence with time served (one day) while vacating an Aug. 1 trial date.
Notre Dame’s Kelly likes progress made by Lea’s defense
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Defense is supposed to be one of the strengths of Notre Dame's 2018, with 10 returning starters.
So despite surrendering 913 yards on 123 plays in Saturday's spring game, Fighting Irish coach Brian Kelly showed little concern with the progress on that side of the ball.
"They're going to be attacking the football at the back end of the defense, which at times (last year) was frustrating," Kelly said.
The defense has a new coordinator for the second straight season.