Blue and Gold Illustrated

Sept. 11, 2021

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

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20 SEPT. 11, 2021 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED BY TYLER HORKA I t could have been déjà vu. Nearly five years to the day Notre Dame lost on the road to Texas in overtime of a of Labor Day weekend Sunday night primetime game, the Irish found themselves once again deadlocked with a hungry opponent on the road in the same situation. Only this time, there was not a story- book ending for the home team. No ex- clamation of "Florida State is back" from ESPN play-by-play announcer Joe Tes- sitore — who just so happened to be on the call again. Nope. Not this time. The night be- longed to Notre Dame. It started on the arm of Irish graduate student quarterback Jack Coan and ended on the foot of senior kicker Jonathan Do- erer. It seemed to be primed to finish at the hands of Florida State's No. 2 quarter- back, McKenzie Milton, just as it had with Texas' No. 2 quarterback Tyrone Swoopes. Nope. Not this time. No. 9 Notre Dame exited Bobby Bowden Field at Doak Campbell Stadium with a 41-38 victory in extra time. Coan picked up his first blue and gold victory, the demons of Labor Day weekend's past were exiled and the Fighting Irish trudged onward. FIRST QUARTER NOTRE DAME 7, FLORIDA STATE 7 Top Moment: Notre Dame sophomore tight end Michael Mayer made his pres- ence felt from the get-go. He started the game with a 25-yard catch and run, and that capped Notre Dame's opening drive by taking advantage of a busted coverage and scoring on a 41-yard drag route a few plays later to put Notre Dame ahead 7-0. Feature Performer: Mayer finished the quarter with four receptions for 74 yards and the touchdown. Stats: Notre Dame ran 19 plays for 125 yards (31 rushing and 94 passing), while Florida State totaled 12 plays for 86 yards (82 rushing and four passing). Items: Florida State went three-and- out on its first two possessions, with the Ademilola brothers, Jayson and Justin, combining for an eight-yard sack on third-and-six during the second drive … Notre Dame's third drive stalled when the usually sure-handed Mayer dropped the ball on what would have been a first down on third-and-seven … Notre Dame missed multiple tackles on red- shirt sophomore running back Joshua Corbin's 89-yard touchdown run that tied the game at 7-7 with 5:06 left in the first quarter … The Irish failed to con- vert on a fourth-and-one passing play to junior running back Kyren Williams. SECOND QUARTER NOTRE DAME 17, FLORIDA STATE 14 Top Moment: On a third-and-eight play, Notre Dame junior safety Kyle Hamilton came away with his first of two interceptions. He set up the Irish offense on the Florida State 48. Coan found senior wide receiver Joe Wilkins Jr. for a 23-yard score five plays later. Wilkins came back to the ball and made a play over a Florida State defen- sive back in the left corner of the end zone to record his second career touch- down at the 2:21 mark of the frame. Feature Performer: Coan con- nected on 6 of 8 throws for 66 yards and the score to Wilkins in the quarter and finished the half 14-of-19 passing for 160 yards with two touchdowns. Stats: The Irish compiled 219 total yards (59 rushing and 160 passing, while limiting the Seminoles to 152 (107 rush- ing and 45 passing). Items: Sophomore defensive tackle Rylie Mills sacked Travis on the first play of the quarter … After scoring on its first drive of the game, the Notre Dame offense mustered a measly 50 yards on its next five drives … Travis scored on a two-yard rushing play to cap a four- play, 45-yard drive … Notre Dame re- sponded with a lengthy 10-play, 46- yard drive, but Coan was bottled up on a designed quarterback run on third- and-five. The Irish settled for a Doerer field goal that cut the deficit to 14-10 with 5:02 left until halftime … Irish ju- nior defensive end Isaiah Foskey ended the half with a 13-yard sack of Travis. THIRD QUARTER NOTRE DAME 38, FLORIDA STATE 20 Top Moment: Notre Dame re- sponded to Florida State taking a 20- 17 lead with a 37-yard touchdown pass from Coan to senior wide receiver Kevin Austin Jr. less than two minutes later. Two plays into Florida State's next drive, Hamilton snagged his second pick. He ran from the opposite hash to the sideline to step in front of a Travis pass and snare it. Williams had his most explosive sequence of the game on the ensuing drive. He took a well-developed screen pass for 55 yards on third and 17, and he scored on a six-yard screen on third and goal four plays later to extend Notre Dame's led to 31-20 with 7:05 left in the third quarter. Feature Performer: Coan connected on 8 of 8 throws for 175 yards with two touchdowns. Through three quarters, he was 22-27 passing for 335 yards with four scores. Stats: Notre Dame racked up 177 yards in the quarter, with 175 coming via the air. The Irish entered the final quar- ter with 396 total yards (61 rushing and 335 passing), compared to Florida State's 299 (177 rushing and 122 passing). Items: Travis lofted a pass down the Survival Skills Quarterback Jack Coan's stellar debut helps Notre Dame escape with a season-opening 41-38 overtime victory at feisty Florida State Coan completed 26 of 35 throws for 366 yards with four touchdowns and one interception in his first game as Notre Dame's starting quarterback. PHOTO BY BOB MYERS

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