Blue and Gold Illustrated

Nov. 4, 2023

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

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26 NOV. 4, 2023 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED burgh, Notre Dame ruled sophomore cornerback Benjamin Morrison out with a quad strain. That was bad news for a team whose star cornerbacks are its defense's strength. Then in the second quarter, graduate student cornerback Cam Hart went out with what Irish head coach Marcus Free- man said was a shoulder or arm injury. Worse news. With the insertion of soph- o m o re Ja d e n M i c key a n d freshman Christian Gray into the lineup, however, Notre Dame didn't miss a beat. "They stepped up, big time," said graduate student nickel back Thomas Harper, who played a great game in his own right with 2 tackles for loss. "We needed that." Led by Mickey and Gray — who had played limited, ro- tational snaps throughout the season — Notre Dame held Pitt quarterback Christian Veilleux to 14 completions on 29 at- tempts (48.3 percent) for 127 yards (4.4 yards per attempt). They each hauled in an inter- ception, with Gray's being a spectacular leaping, one-handed grab and Mickey returning his 43 yards for a touchdown. After the game, one of the first things Freeman told the team was giving Gray and Mickey credit for stepping up when their number was called. "For those guys to find out in warm- NOTRE DAME VS. PITTSBURGH QUARTER-BY-QUARTER COMPARISON Notre Dame 1st Qtr. 2nd Qtr. 3rd Qtr. 4th Qtr. 1st Half 2nd Half Total Time of Possession 9:30 8:18 6:39 11:19 17:48 17:58 35:46 Third-Down Conversions 1-1 1-3 0-2 2-2 2-4 2-4 4-8 Fourth-Down Conversions 0-0 0-1 0-0 0-0 0-1 0-0 0-1 Average Field Position ND-32 ND-44 ND-41 ND-19 ND-38 ND-30 ND-34 Pittsburgh 1st Qtr. 2nd Qtr. 3rd Qtr. 4th Qtr. 1st Half 2nd Half Final Time of Possession 5:30 6:42 8:21 3:41 12:12 12:02 24:14 Third-Down Conversions 0-3 1-2 1-4 0-1 1-5 1-5 2-10 Fourth-Down Conversions 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 Average Field Position PITT-23 PITT-24 PITT-24 PITT-25 PITT-23 PITT-24 PITT-24 PLAY CHART (NO. OF PLAYS) Yards ND PITT Nega ve 7 6 0-5 28 27 6-9 11 5 10-19 10 8 20-29 3 1 30-39 2 1 40-49 2 0 50 or more 1 1 RED ZONE EFFICIENCY (INSIDE 20-YARD LINE) No Poss. TD FG Score Notre Dame 7 5 1 1 Pittsburgh 0 0 0 0 BIG PLAYS (25 YARDS OR MORE) Notre Dame • 2-17 ND32 Hartman pass to Tyree for 47 yards to PITT21 • 1-10 ND37 Estimé run for 33 yards to PITT30 • 1-10 ND20 Hartman pass to Flores for 60 yards to PITT20 • 1-10 PITT47 Hartman pass to Merriweather for 42 yards to PITT5 • 1-10 ND16 Angeli pass to Love for 33 yards to ND49 Pittsburgh • 1-10 PITT25 Veilleux pass to Means for 34 yards to ND41 • 2-10 PITT25 Yarnell pass to K. Johnson for 50 yards to ND25 • 1-10 ND25 Yarnell pass to Mumpfield for 25 yards and a touchdown Sophomore cornerback Jaden Mickey notched his first career interception and brought it back 43 yards for a touchdown. PHOTO BY CHAD WEAVER PARTICIPATION CHART OFFENSE QB: SAM HARTMAN, Steve Angeli, Kenny Minchey RB: AUDRIC ESTIMÉ, Gi'Bran Payne, Jeremiyah Love, Jadarian Price, Devyn Ford WR: JADEN GREATHOUSE, RICO FLORES JR., CHRIS TYREE, Jayden Thomas, Tobias Mer- riweather, Jordan Faison, Braylon James TE: HOLDEN STAES, Mitchell Evans, Eli Raridon, Cooper Flanagan, Davis Sherwood LT: JOE ALT, Tosh Baker LG: PAT COOGAN, Ashton Craig C: ZEKE CORRELL, Andrew Kristofic RG: ROCCO SPINDLER, Billy Schrauth RT: BLAKE FISHER, Aamil Wagner DEFENSE Vyper: JORDAN BOTELHO, Joshua Burnham, Junior Tuihalamaka, Boubacar Traore DT: RYLIE MILLS, Jason Onye NT: HOWARD CROSS III, Donovan Hinish, Ga- briel Rubio SDE: JAVONTAE JEAN-BAPTISTE, Nana Osafo- Mensah Mike: JD BERTRAND, Drayk Bowen, Nolan Ziegler Will: MARIST LIUFAU, Jaylen Sneed Rover: Jack Kiser FS: DJ BROWN, Ramon Henderson, Adon Shuler SS: XAVIER WATTS, Antonio Carter II BCB: CAM HART, Chance Tucker FCB: JADEN MICKEY, Christian Gray Nickel: THOMAS HARPER, Clarence Lewis SPECIAL TEAMS Kick return: Jaden Mickey, Cooper Flanagan, Joshua Burnham, Davis Sherwood, Cam Hart, Xavier Watts, Chase Ketterer, Christian Gray, Drayk Bowen, Nolan Ziegler Kickoff coverage: Xavier Watts, Jaylen Sneed, Junior Tuihalamaka, Drayk Bowen, Joshua Burnham, Jack Kiser, Clarence Lewis, Jaden Mickey, Ramon Henderson, Luke Talich, DJ Brown, Nolan Ziegler, Skip Velotta Punt return: Jordan Faison, Cam Hart, Jack Kiser, Junior Tuihalamaka, Ramon Hender- son, Chance Tucker, Jaylen Sneed, Marty Auer, Joshua Burnham, Luke Talich Punt coverage: Marist Liufau, JD Bertrand, Jer- emiyah Love, Devyn Ford, Davis Sherwood, Jason Onye, Jack Kiser, Cam Hart, DJ Brown Long snapper: Michael Vinson, Rino Monte- forte Holder: Bryce McFerson, Ben Krimm Kicker: Spencer Shrader, Zac Yoakam Kick returner: Gi'Bran Payne, Devyn Ford, Jadarian Price Punt returner: Chris Tyree, Jordan Faison Kickoff: Spencer Shrader, Zac Yoakam Punter: Bryce McFerson

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