Blue and Gold Illustrated

February 2022

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

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Page 21 of 47

22 FEBRUARY 2022 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED BY TYLER HORKA I t all seemed to be going to plan. Notre Dame's offense supplied more fireworks than the pregame national anthem production in- side State Farm Stadium. Notre Dame's defense made sure the Oklahoma State offense didn't do the same. The Fighting Irish were flat out roll- ing in Marcus Freeman's debut as head coach in the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl. Everything was working. Until they weren't. Until it wasn't. Freeman's group got out to a 21-point lead near the end of the first half. Grad- uate student quarterback Jack Coan threw for 342 yards and four touch- downs in the game's first 30 minutes. From the last minute of the first half, though, it was all Oklahoma State. The Cowboys scored 30 straight points to spoil the inauguration of the Freeman era in a 37-35 defeat of Notre Dame. "We obviously didn't finish with the outcome we wanted, and we're disap- pointed," Freeman said after the game. COOLED IN THE DESERT Notre Dame goes cold in the second half and allows Oklahoma State to rally from a 21-point deficit in a 37-35 Fiesta Bowl loss

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