Blog Entry

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

Posted on: September 11, 2010 7:52 pm
Edited on: September 11, 2010 8:06 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli

The job as head football coach at Notre Dame is not easy.  Not only are you in the spotlight every weekend thanks to your own television deal with a major network, but you've also got an entire country filled with Notre Dame fans watching and judging your every move on Saturdays.  To make matters worse, most of these fans seem to forget that the Irish haven't won a national title since 1988, and expect perfection from their team every week.

For the most part, Brian Kelly has seemed like the perfect man for the job.  As much a politician as a head football coach, he's proven adept at handling all the demands of such a high-pressure job.  Of course, you can shake as many hands as you want, at the end of the day if you're not winning football games, you're not going to last in South Bend.

On Saturday Kelly suffered his first loss with the Irish, and though his team played hard and held the lead in the last minute, Kelly did leave himself open to some second-guessing.

In the first half the Irish had lost Dayne Crist to some mysterious eye injury and had to replace him with unproven quarterbacks Tommy Rees and Nate Montana .  Still, at the end of the first half trailing only 21-7, the Irish found themselves with the ball at the Michigan 3-yard line with three seconds left on the clock.

Instead of taking the easy points and heading to the locker room trailing 14-10, Kelly decided to go for the big score.  What he got was Nate Montana completely overthrowing his receivers out the back of the Notre Dame end zone.

It was a decision that loomed large at the end of the game after Denard Robinson capped off his Heismanesque performance with a touchdown to give the Wolverines a four-point lead in the final minute.  Instead of trailing by one the Irish were down four and needed a touchdown to win the game.  The Irish drove down to the Michigan 27 yard line with time for one final heave towards the end zone.

Much like Montana before him, Dayne Crist ended up sailing his pass through the back of the end zone and into the Notre Dame marching band.  The game was over, Notre Dame had lost.

But had the Irish kicked a field goal to end the first half, they only would have had to try a 44-yard field goal to win the game.  There's no guarantee the Irish would have made the kick and won the game, but thanks to Kelly's decision to go for the touchdown thirty minutes earlier, the Irish will never know.

Since: Dec 21, 2006
Posted on: September 13, 2010 10:37 am

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

no matter how you slice it    michigan won 28-24.ND has alot to improve on, however, michigans qb wont last the season in the offense they run...he takes to many hits.if he does hes got my vote for Heisman ....(however, my vote is fictious)
im a ND fan have been all my life, I hate losing to michigan......but we did.
next up mich st.

Since: Sep 13, 2010
Posted on: September 13, 2010 9:26 am

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

I agree with his decision.  He didn't know if Dayne would be back and points would be tough to come by so he was trying to cut it to one score instead of them still being down by two scores. 

Since: Oct 9, 2008
Posted on: September 13, 2010 8:59 am

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

Speak for yourself! As an alumni and season ticket holder BK is not welcome back in the Queen city! We have our coach!!

BK went to Notre dame it was his dream job. He knew the consequences going there. So you are pulling for him Cincinnati loves what he did while he was here other than that we don't care!~

Since: Sep 13, 2009
Posted on: September 13, 2010 6:33 am

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

it may have been big 10 officials as someone mentioned but it was assuredly slanted towards the Irish.
the second hald officiating was a joke and the reason Michigan couldn't get anything going,and no, I'm not being biased.

Since: May 9, 2009
Posted on: September 12, 2010 10:51 pm

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

Come on maeman2 everyone else who posted on this story had very logical comments and there are homers on both sides. You however apparently saw a game the rest of us didnt see. Call it like it was. Michigan beat Notre Dame but let's dont get delusional with what Michigan COULD have done. Notre Dame could say the same thing. What you should be grateful for is that win probably went a long way in keeping your coach employed at Michigan. His off the field antics may still do him in but for now he has a temporary stay. I agree that we could all debate what BK should or should not have done. Personally, I would have kicked the field goal but I am not the coach. Oh and by the way lest we forget ND spotted Michigan 14 pts from the miscues of the backup quarterbacks. Part of the game - absolutely but certainly bad timing for the Irish. Crist is a good quarterback. That long pass play for a TD was impressive. Let's see what  the teams do the rest of the season. We have a long way to go. As a long time Irish fan I was encouraged by their play. Last year the D wasnt in the same time zone as the other team's receivers. They are clearly better. Finally Notre Dame has gotten the right coach. It took Alabama a few tries before they got Nick Saban...ditto for Notre Dame. Spouse and I are going to the Stanford-ND game with 40 other fans. Should be a good one. The Stanford quarterback, Luck, is pretty impressive too. Finally, a message to Michigan fans from my Ohio State friend....they intend to pound you AGAIN. Go Irish!

Since: Jan 30, 2009
Posted on: September 12, 2010 10:10 pm

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

Brian Kelly is a douche. He deserves all the criticism he gets. He will be out of Notre Dame in three years.

Since: Aug 11, 2010
Posted on: September 12, 2010 5:22 pm

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

yea yea yea the irish lost flat out and forget all these if factors. if michigan had a half way typical michigan defense it would have been a blowout. denard robinson is clearly the front runner and there was no way the irish could stop him. the only reason michigan was not up by more is because the recievers dropped passes all day and didnt fight for extra yards again not the typical michigan wr

Since: Oct 1, 2008
Posted on: September 12, 2010 3:11 pm

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

Exactly, DRob is going to be really good. UM will have to get some of of their other offensive players involved or DRob will not survive the whole season, especially once UM gets into Big Ten play. The ND defense played ok in the first have considering the offense was going 3 and punt on every possession. The defense played a good second half holding UM to 7 points but UM got the points when they needed to. Very entertaining game to watch.


Since: Oct 1, 2008
Posted on: September 12, 2010 2:46 pm

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

How can u say they wont have a qb that will take them to a major bowl game? It was Crist's second career start. Give the kid some time. He has a great arm and can run a bit. He just has to work on his reads and his accuaracy. I am not saying ND will be back in the BCS picture this year by any means but they will improve each game and play in a decent bowl game this year.

Since: Oct 1, 2008
Posted on: September 12, 2010 2:41 pm

Brian Kelly leaves himself open to criticism

Good comment, I agree.

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