Blue and Gold Illustrated

Nov. 19, 2018

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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Page 28 of 55 NOV. 19, 2018 29 NOTRE DAME HEAD COACH BRIAN KELLY … On the game plan for senior quarterback Brandon Wimbush: "We're trying to attack the defense, but we're also trying to be smart and utilize the strengths of a quarterback we feel can accurately do the things we want him to do. The game plan was solid. We wanted to get off to a great start. We did. "Our defense helped us get off to a great start. With the early interception we were able to get seven on the board. We got a great throw, and we were able to get off to a great start." On improvements needed before Syracuse game: "Certainly from a defense standpoint, there are some ex- ecution things we want to do better in our nickel [pack- age]. We were in a lot of the nickel today. We're going to see that again next week with Syracuse. "It gives us a good opportunity to really evaluate our personnel groupings and really hone in on some of those things." NOTRE DAME SENIOR QUARTERBACK BRANDON WIMBUSH … On what he's improved over past several weeks: "Just the fundamentals and the little things. I knew I was going to get this opportunity again, so to go in here and be effective and get the team a win, I needed to do whatever I needed to do." On if Florida State made adjustments in second half: "I made a bad read on the first ball. I was kind of late on the second ball. That's what got me those two picks. "I don't think they made any adjustments, I just think I didn't come out with the same fire as I did in the first half." NOTRE DAME SENIOR RUNNING BACK DEXTER WILLIAMS … On Notre Dame's offensive line: "The offensive line came out with the fire, and I just told them to keep on the pressure and I'm going to do what I have to do. I told them to give me a crease, and I would make a couple runs for them. "They told me they got me, and I told them I got them. We had to keep trust in each other, and we got the job done." On multiple seniors scoring on Senior Night: "I'm not surprised. When the spotlight is on, a lot of guys have to rise to the occasion. I'm glad the seniors could come out here and put on a show. "This is our last game in this stadium, but this is not our last game for this season. "We played a good game, but we have to continue to keep playing hard." NOTRE DAME SENIOR WIDE RECEIVER MILES BOYKIN … On what it was like having Wimbush back at quar- terback: "It doesn't change much. As a receiver, we have to be in the right place at the right time. The interception that Brandon threw was my fault because I wasn't in the right place. "From that standpoint, it's tough sometimes because we've got to be perfect for our quarterbacks and make their job a lot easier. When we're not doing our job, they can't do their job." NOTRE DAME JUNIOR DEFENSIVE END DAELIN HAYES … On the importance of building a quick lead against the Seminoles: "That was Coach Kelly's statement to us. He really wanted us to come out and dominate at home. Protect our house for our seniors." On if the team fed off the energy of Senior Night: "The whole gist of this game was to send out our seniors the right way. Our seniors have done a lot to turn our program around; they endured a lot as the young guys, sophomores at that time, and the transition to being the team that we are today. "I think they've been huge in that transition and lead- ing us to be the best version of ourselves." NOTRE DAME SENIOR LINEBACKER DRUE TRANQUILL … On if he feels the senior class is leaving the Irish program in good shape: "We hope so. That's one of the things I hope to do in life, leave things better than I found them. Two years ago, after going through that brutal season, we all made the choice of that's not the standard of Notre Dame. "As recruits, everybody talks about coming here and the tradition of Notre Dame. It's time to start building that tradition back here at Notre Dame, and we're all bought into that as a group." On closing out home schedule with a win: "It's great. That was our second goal this year to protect our house. This past summer, we ran every stair in it and just wove ourselves into it. "To complete that goal on senior night with such a special group of guys means a lot." — Corey Bodden and David McKinney FROM THE LOCKER ROOM Senior linebacker Drue Tranquill registered seven tackles in his final home game at Notre Dame. PHOTO BY ANGELA DRISKELL

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