Blue and Gold Illustrated

Nov. 27, 2020

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

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Page 16 of 55 NOV. 27, 2020 17 with at least 10 yards to go. All told, Notre Dame is ranked sixth nation- ally with 39 quarterback pressures on third down and 24th in opponent quarterback rating on third down. "I don't care how many days you spend on third-and-short, you're coming out on the short end," Kelly said. "You need to be five-plus, six- plus. We've done really well in those areas in keeping it in third-and-long." And well in third-and-short, it turns out. Notre Dame stuffed Eti- enne twice on third-and-one and is 13th in the FBS in third- and fourth- and-short run-play conversion rate at 46.2 percent. The defense is not only putting opponents into obvious pass situations, but so effective in shorter- field situations to the point where it is more likely to stop a short-yardage run than allow a conversion. That's an outlier, and one Kelly is surely glad to see. ✦ Notre Dame's defense was allowing oppo- nents to convert only 24.73 percent of their third downs, which ranked fifth in the coun- try through Nov. 7. PHOTO COURTESY NOTRE DAME ATHLETICS

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