Blue and Gold Illustrated

Sept. 11, 2021

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

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Page 12 of 55 SEPT. 11, 2021 13 40 Years Ago: Sept. 12, 1981 Gerry Faust makes his coaching debut at No. 4 Notre Dame with a 27-9 victory at home ver- sus LSU in a game where he rotates incumbent sophomore quarterback Blair Kiel with fifth-year senior Tim Koegel, who starred for Faust at Cincin- nati Moeller High School. Kiel (3-of-6 passing for 29 yards with two inter- ceptions) tosses a touchdown to fullback Larry Moriarty on the opening series, but Koegel fin- ishes 6-of-7 passing for 101 yards with no in- terceptions, and his six-yard scoring toss to fel- low Moeller graduate Dave Condeni gives Notre Dame a 27-3 cushion in the third quarter. Another Moeller product, Tony Hunter, moves from re- ceiver to wingback, where he carries 11 times for 42 yards and a score plus catches two passes for 40 yards. Coupled with No. 1 Michigan's loss at home to Wisconsin, Notre Dame is elevated all the way to No. 1. It was a repeat of history because 27 years earlier (1954), first-year head coach, 26-year-old Terry Brennan, moved from No. 2 to No. 1 after just one game, following a 21-0 whitewash at home of No. 4 Texas. "I think I'll retire now," Faust joked to members of the media after his Fighting Irish move to No. 1 that Monday. 35 Years Ago: Sept. 13, 1986 In Lou Holtz's inaugural game as Notre Dame's head coach, his Fighting Irish make history with a 24-23 loss at home to No. 3 Michigan. Although it is a school record third straight year Notre Dame loses its opener, it becomes the first team in the 50-year history of the Associated Press poll to go from unranked to ranked (No. 20, which is all the AP ranked back then) after a defeat. Against a vaunted Michigan defense that sur- rendered only five touchdowns a year earlier, Notre Dame racks up 455 yards of total offense and never punts. Its downfall is three red-zone turnovers, with fumbles at the Wolverine 7- and 15-yard lines, and an interception in the end zone on a fade by quarterback Steve Beuerlein, who finishes 21-of-33 passing for 263 yards. The Irish also lose a fumble on a kickoff that sets up a Michigan touchdown. Trailing in the fourth quarter 24-20, a Beuerlein pass into the end zone is caught by tight end Joel Williams, but the of- ficial rules him out of bounds — even though the Michigan ball boy standing right by the play ad- mits after the game that Williams was in bounds. Finally, stellar senior kicker John Carney not only misses an extra point in the defeat, but his 45- yard attempt with 18 seconds left in the contest — he had been 15 of 16 in his career from 40 to 49 yards — goes awry. "I've never seen so many things go so wrong on close little things in my life," Holtz said afterward. The Irish depart the field to a standing ovation. A year earlier they had finished 5-6, capped by a 58-7 loss at Miami. 25 Years Ago: Sept. 14, 1996 For only the third time in Notre Dame Stadium's 66-year history — and now 91 years — a Fighting Irish player returns the game's opening kickoff for a touchdown. Junior cornerback Allen Rossum achieves the feat with a 99-yard return against Purdue to spark a 35-0 victory against the Boilermakers and head coach Jim Colletto, who would be hired as the Fighting Irish offensive coordinator a few months later. The only other two times, to this day, that Note Dame returned an opening kickoff at home for a score were George Melinkovich's 98-yard return versus Northwestern in 1932 and Terry Brennan's 97-yard score against Army in 1947. 20 Years Ago: Sept. 12, 2001 Notre Dame's scheduled game at Purdue Sept. 15 is canceled shortly after the Tuesday, Sept. 11 al-Qaeda attacks on the nation that take 2,977 American lives at New York's World Trade Center, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and from the four plane crashes orchestrated by 19 members of the terrorist organization. The game is rescheduled in West Lafayette for Dec. 1. It is the first time a Notre Dame football game is aborted since Nov. 23, 1963, at Iowa, one day after President John F. Kennedy was assas- sinated in Dallas. Anniversaries In Notre Dame Football History: Sept. 8-14 YOU DON'T WAIT FOR MAIL DELIVERY! HAVE TO The digital edition of Blue & Gold Illustrated is available Sundays at The Blue & Gold Illustrated digital edition includes all the great content you find in your print edition, plus: ✦ Searchable archive ✦ Downloadable PDFs ✦ Available on computers and tablets Visit for the latest issue every Sunday! It's already part of your subscription! PLUS: The Blue Gold Report Midweek Update! • Emailed Every Pre-Game Wednesday • Depth Charts And Rosters For Both Teams • Updated Statistics • Columns and Much More! • Can be viewed on your computer, phone or tablet, or printed out to read later. To receive notifications, please send your email address to: Customer Service: 1-800-421-7751 Junior cornerback Allen Rossum's game-open- ing 99-yard kickoff return touchdown sparked Notre Dame to a 35-0 victory over Purdue in 1996. PHOTO COURTESY NOTRE DAME ATHLETICS UNDER THE DOME

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