You never know what to expect on a Saturday in College Football in 2020. Never mind a Saturday that has Halloween involved and a full moon. The Fightin’ Irish needed to play a game that didn’t allow the Yellow Jackets to feel they had any momentum or had any chance of winning the game. It wasn’t a perfect game, but it was still a game where all aspects of the game executed on the field.
The defense was stellar in the first half. Allowing a total of sixty six yards. The defense only allowed a T.O.P. of 9:27. GT only had four drives in the first half including a three and out.
Possessions were at a premium in the first half, especially in the first quarter. The first quarter only saw the Irish possess the ball twice. On the first possession, the Irish drove on fifteen plays, eighty one yards in 8:38. Ian Book was perfect on the opening drive as he completed seven passes in a row. Of the fifteen plays and the seven complete passes, five of the eight rushes were by Kyren Williams. The Irish scored on an eight yard TD pass to Joe Wilkens to finish the 15 play, 81 yards, and a T.O.P. 8:38 and a 7-0 score.
The Irish were driving at the end of the first quarter and were in GT territory. Opening of the second quarter, Williams advances the ball to the GT10 and gets the ball stripped from his hand. GT gets the scoop and score in the ninety three yard return to tie the game at 7-7.
On the ensuing possession by the Irish, they wasted no time in returning the favor. The Irish drove seventy five yards on 7 plays with 3:48 on T.O.P. The big plays of the drive were a thirteen yard pass from Book to Avery Davis and a twenty one yard rush from Chris Tyree. Williams would score from two yards out. The Irish lead 14-7.
The Fightin’ Irish last possession of the half saw Jonathan Doerer kick a thirty two yard Field Goal. The Irish go up 17-7.
The defense continued to pour it on. The Fightin’ Irish defense got to Jeff Sims, four times in the third quarter. Daelin Hayes got to him twice. One caused a fumble recovered by Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa and another time time in the fourth. Isaiah Foskey got to Sims for a loss, and the same for Shaun Crawford. Adetokunbo Ogundeji rounded out the sack attack in the fourth quarter.
The Fightin’ Irish allowed the Yellow Jackets a total of one hundred seventy two yards. Thirty seven via the rush and one hundred thirty five via the pass and a T.O.P. 13:39 and thirty five plays.
Late the the fourth quarter the Yellow Jackets put together a late drive together. Eight plays and sixty yards later, the Yellow Jackets put a drive together that saw a TD scored. But they failed to convert on a two point conversion. The Yellow Jackets did succeed on the on-sides kick, but turned the ball over on downs for their last possession.
The Fightin’ Irish had the ball for only five possessions in the second half. The Irish managed another touchdown on their first possession. The possession was six plays, sixty five yards, and T.O.P. of 2:56. The big plays of the drive were a Book fourteen yard run. A thirty one yard pass from Book to Javon McKinley, and a Williams four yard run for the touchdown.
The second scoring possession was nine plays, seventy four yards and a T.O.P. of 4:32. The possession was due to a missed field goal by the Yellow Jackets. The drive started late in the third quarter and culminated with a C’Bo Flemister three yard TD run.
The final Fightin’ Irish possession was about chewing up some clock. 8 plays, 51 yards and a T.O.P. of 5:38. The Irish go Onward To Victory 31-13.
Coach Kelly Press Conference
Next Saturday the game everyone has had circled on their calendars for ever. Clemson comes into town minus Trevor Lawrence. The Fightin’ Irish are going to need to execute physically and mentally in that game. A solid week of practice and paying attention to the details will be the “What’s Important Now” activity.
A special thank you to Kathy Carmody and Bob Vasquez for their game photos.
Cheers and Go Irish! ☘🏈🌩