Blue and Gold Illustrated

February 2020

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

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Page 10 of 47 FEBRUARY 2020 11 UNDER THE DOME OF THE MONTH ➤"God has blessed me to finish my ND degree in economics! All glory to him for push- ing me through it all! I am blessed beyond measure! My greatest accomplishment to this date!" Senior safety Alohi Gilman (@alohigilman) on finishing up classes at Notre Dame Dec. 20 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED PO Box 2331 Durham, NC 27702 1-800-421-7751 DELIVERY LIMITED TO CONTINENTAL U.S. PLEASE ADD SALES TAX FOR ITEMS SHIPPING TO: (NC 7.5%, IN 7%, MI 6%) Made to order & shipped direct from manufacturer, returns not related to damage may incur fee. GRILL MAT $49.95 + FREE S&H Available in 2 Styles: ND or Leprechaun (Item #6622-ND or #6622-LEP) (Item #6621) CUSTOM GRILL COVERS Hand-made in USA using the finest com- mercial grade breathable vinyl featuring double-stitching, buckle clasps and mois- ture vent. Logo printed with UV-resistant ink in official school colors. AVAILABLE IN 2 SIZES & 3 LOGOS: Small: 60" wide x 36" tall x 21" deep $51.95 + $15.00 S&H Large: 72" wide x 36" tall x 21" deep $54.95 + $15.00 S&H Please allow up to 2 weeks for delivery. THEY SAID IT "These Irish really did like playing together. These Irish really did play for each other. It wasn't just lip service on those sometimes painfully awkward Tuesday media sessions during the regular season. The adversity that arrived following that October no-show at Michigan never did crack this group. It did the opposite. It was the ultimate pressure release. From that rainy night on, the Irish just played." Tom Noie of The South Bend Tribune "Here's how close — or perceived to be close — Brian Kelly was to replacing Iowa State football coach Dan McCarney: It was so [erroneously] rumored that Kelly's bolting from Central Michigan to Ames was such a done deal that a well-placed official in Iowa State's athletic department alerted The Register that it probably wouldn't be the greatest idea to run with fiction against fact. Go ahead and do it, but you might look silly, she or he told us. So we held tight." — Randy Peterson of The Des Moines Register on the Notre Dame head coach almost taking the same position at Iowa State following the 2006 campaign "On one hand, rising fifth-year Notre Dame senior Ian Book is not an elite passer. On the other, he helped lead the Fighting Irish to the College Football Playoff last year and guided them to another strong season this year. What is not up for debate is what Notre Dame head coach Kelly wants. … Book may not have as high of a ceiling as some of the players featured here, but he is an exceptional college quarterback. The NFL should wait as he returns and continues to polish his game." — Brad Shepard of Bleacher Report on the possibility of senior quarterback Ian Book returning for a fifth year in 2020 "But for everyone he inspires, there are also the people and headlines attempting to tear him down. They are the ones who told Rudy he would never attend Notre Dame. Then, they told him he would never survive there as a football walk-on, or that a 5-foot-6 tackling dummy would ever actually dress for a game, let alone play. After his 27 seconds of glory against Georgia Tech in 1975, they said he was insane for thinking all of the above would ever make it to the silver screen. And now, a quarter-century after 'Rudy' was in theaters, they are still here. They question his true role in Notre Dame's unparalleled college football history, and constantly challenge him to defend the truthfulness of the film that bears his name." — ESPN's Ryan McGee on the real-life Rudy Ruettiger "Yes, because they've done well in the trenches especially along the offensive line and that will be key moving forward. The balance of the classes is excellent and they are hitting a ton of needs. The only thing lacking is a difference-maker as a pass rusher." — national recruiting director Mike Farrell on if Notre Dame is recruiting at a national championship level "Wednesday, two schools went in entirely different directions and took Signing Day videos to the next level. And it may be years before anyone tops them. Notre Dame made a lot of rooms dusty Wednesday morning when the Fighting Irish social media team began posting videos narrated by each signee's parents. Try and watch [them] without tearing up." — The Athletic's Andy Staples on Notre Dame's National Signing Day social media campaign PHOTO BY JAMES GILBERT

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