As the calendar turns to 2009, here are a few resolutions for the Irish and their faithful heading into the New Year.
1. Patience For All Notre Dame Fans With Charlie Weis
After his first two seasons there were about zero Irish fans calling for CW to be fired. Now, just two seasons later, practically the entire fan base is wanting a new head coach. Just be patient.
When Weis first came in, the roster was riddled with upperclassmen. My feeling is it takes a little while to grasp Weis' offense, and for those younger players, the learning curve is fairly slow. Granted, I would have liked to see more growth from Jimmy Clausen this season, but the Hawaii Bowl was very encouraging. Then, as the young roster improves and moves on, the recruits that have gotten valuable practice time in the offense will be ready to step in and play well.
We were lucky to have Brady Quinn and company for Weis' first two seasons, let's give the new class, and Weis, some time to grow before we get into a tred of firing coaches every 3-5 years.
2. Run Between The Tackles!
The reason the Notre Dame running game has been so abysmal is due to one thing, Weis' love for the stretch play. Let's face it, when your entire offensive line is 300 pounds plus, they tend to be a little slower. However, they are strong. If Weis would use more of a pounding running game, or use the pass to set up the run, the offense would be much more successful. As defenses continue to get faster, it is Notre Dame's strength up front that they must utilize. Not the speed of the running back.
3. Let Jon Tenuta Take Over The Defense
I think Corwin Brown is a very good coach and recruiter. I believe he would be a great linebacker coach or defensive backs coach. However, Tenuta is much more established as a defensive coordinator and could take the defense to another level. Again, the Irish are very young on the defensive side of the ball, but I just feel if the Irish make the change now instead of trying to incorporate two different defensive philosophies it will help the defense develop into a much more dominant force.
4. Beat USC
Please. Please just beat them. Everyone hates them so much. I know they get paid and all, but just beat them for me.