Jimmy Clausen: Now's The Time

David WyattAnalyst IJune 27, 2009

LOS ANGELES - NOVEMBER 29:  Jimmy Clausen #7 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish walks on the field against the USC Trojans on November 29, 2008 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, California.  USC won 38-3.  (Photo by Jeff Golden/Getty Images)

When highly touted Quarterback Jimmy Clausen rolled up in South Bend Indiana in a stretch limousine, with white fur draped over his shoulders, rings adorning his fingers, we knew that the next few years were going to be fun as sports fans.

Now however is the time for Clausen to come out and prove that he is who the college scouts thought he was, that he is a good enough player to get away with eccentric behaviour like he showed on April 22nd 2006 in Indiana. There can no longer be any excuses, Notre Dame have a premier receiving corp, a largely returning offensive line and the tools for a run game that can make the play action pass that much more effective.

His freshman season was plagued with the image of him sitting on his derrier, a depleted offensive line allowed Clausen to be sacked 34 times, injuries and poor play led to him missing significant time, missing the USC and Navy games completely

Last season he showed glimpses of what he is capable of, throwing for 3172 yards, and 25 TD's. However he did throw 17 interceptions on the season. Now it would be easy to look at those stats as a rival and say that it's very unimpressive, but watching all of the games, a number of those interceptions can be attributed to the receiver, missed routes, poor play and fumbled catches.

However, it can not be denied that Clausen has to make better decisions, and I'm not talking about his decision to get a little tipsy with cameras around. At points he needs to step out of the pocket and just throw the ball away instead of trying to force into spaces that Montana couldn't manage.

Clausen will be given all the weapons necessary to be one of the top QB's this season with Golden Tate and impressive freshman Michael Floyd return to South Bend. They will be joined by Duval Kamara and highly touted California recruit Shaquelle Evans. Along with that big target over the middle in Kyle Rudolph, Jimmy has no more excuses.

He wanted four national titles when he signed up to be the ND QB, maybe he will have to settle for the one, but a lot rests on the young mans shoulder.