Blue and Gold Illustrated

January 2021

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

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Page 26 of 47 JANUARY 2021 27 3 Touchdown receptions by Rose Bowl MVP and Heisman Trophy finalist DeVonta Smith, tying the single-game record against the Fighting Irish shared by six others since the first time in 1971. The most recent was Michi- gan's Jeremy Gallon in 2013 during a 41-30 victory by the Wolverines. 5-0 Record by Alabama head coach Nick Saban against Notre Dame. He won all three meetings versus the Fighting Irish from 1997-99 while at Michigan State, and he is now 2-0 at Alabama, with the first the BCS National Championship game victory (42-14) in January 2013. The only other two coaches who were 4-0 versus the Irish were Chicago's Amos Alonzo Stagg (1893-99) and Northwestern's Ara Parseghian (1959-62), who two years later would begin a legendary career with the Fighting Irish. 7 Receptions by freshman tight end Michael Mayer for 62 yards. The career- high catch total gave him 42 for the year for 450 yards, with two touch- downs. The previous Notre Dame record for catches and yards receiving by a freshman tight end was 29 for 340 yards by Kyle Rudolph in 2008. 7 Interceptions recorded by Notre Dame the entire season on 388 attempts by the opposition, including none in the 30 thrown by Alabama. No one on the Fighting Irish roster had more than one pick, which is the first time that has occurred since 1994, another year where the 6-5-1 team collectively managed only seven interceptions. 9 Consecutive losses by Notre Dame in what is classified as a "major" bowl. It began with the 1995 Fiesta Bowl versus Colorado (41-24) and continued most recently with College Football Playoff setbacks in the Cotton Bowl to Clemson (30-3) in 2018 and this year's 31-14 defeat to the Crimson Tide in the Rose Bowl. The average score in those defeats was 37-17, and only once did Notre Dame not lose by more than 14 (31-26 versus Florida State in the 1996 Orange Bowl). 10 Bowl games as Notre Dame's head coach for Brian Kelly — a new school record. He is now 5-5 in these postseason outings, and the Fighting Irish drop to 19-20 overall in bowl games. He is tied with Lou Holtz (1986-96) for the most bowl wins, with Holtz posting a 5-4 ledger. The difference is that Holtz's five victories were against teams that had a combined 54-2 record entering the game, while Kelly is seeking his first victory in a major bowl. 1,125 Rushing yards this season by Kyren Williams, the fourth-most ever by a Notre Dame sophomore. When including bowl games, the record by an Irish sophomore is 1,505 by Allen Pinkett (1983), fol- lowed by 1,196 by Darius Walker (2005), and 1,179 by Autry Denson (1996). Williams finished three yards ahead of Jerome Bettis' 1,122 in 1991. 10,466 Total yards accumulated by fifth-year senior quarterback Ian Book in his Notre Dame career, second on the all-time list to Brady Quinn's 11,944 from 2003-06. They are the only two Irish players to eclipse the 8,000 mark in total offense. Book's 8,948 passing yards are second to Quinn's 11,762, and his 1,518 yards rushing are second among Fighting Irish quarterbacks to Tony Rice's 2,049 from 1987-89 (including bowl games, which Notre Dame did not count back then). BY THE NUMBERS BY LOU SOMOGYI 63 Tackles recorded by sopho- more safety KYLE HAMILTON this season to pace the team in that category after recording seven against Alabama. Since 1956, when Notre Dame first began to officially track tackle totals, this year's total is the fewest ever by the team leader in that category. It had previously been 73 by Ed Hoerster in 1962. PHOTO COURTESY COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFF

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