Smeagol is Free!
A hermitudinal view of...stuff...


En Dee's Dubya

All off-season long, I've been pretty quiet about the 2008 Irish. Don't get me wrong, there was plenty of reason for me be chirpy and excited about what's been going on in South Bend, but I figured stating my excitement would do no good until they actually got on the field and played a game. Yesterday, they did just that. Was it frustrating? Yes. Was it agonizingly close? Yes. Was it the type of game I'd like to see played against a team that lost to a far lesser opponent the week before? Absolutely not.

Still, I'm fine with that.

The reason I was frustrated was because the Irish weren't crushing the Aztecs when they should have been. Allow me, if you're still reading this and not nauseated by my sports-junkie fandom analysis, to list a few concrete observations that made this year's team, even at just one game old, decidedly different from last year's team, no matter who the opponent was. One, Jimmy Clausen was accurate all day, making a variety of throws to a variety of spots on the field. Those two interceptions, by the way, weren't his fault. Two, Jimmy Clausen wasn't watching the result of his throws from his back. Three, they showed the ability to run the ball with some degree of power and explosiveness, even if it was against a lesser-quality SDSU defense. Four, they have talent and speed on an aggresive defense that showed they will fly in to make the tackle, even if that talent and speed is young and was clearly tired on that clock-eating SDSU drive in the middle of the second half. Five, idiotic penalties weren't an issue.

Now, those things said, was the game perfect? No, and that's why it was frustrating. Last year, the Irish showed a lack of talent and execution that gave ND fans everywhere little hope that they'd eke out a win. This year, even though it was just one game, the Irish showed they do have the ability to crush an opponent, and that's why a win that was just eked out isn't as nice as it would have been last year.

Give 'em some time...I mean, there's plenty of season left to bemoan should wins be more scarce than we're hoping. For now, I say enjoy the win...they were rare enough last year, weren't they?

posted by Bolo | 7:33 PM
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