2014 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team

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2014 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football
NotreDameFightingIrish.svg
Music City Bowl Champions
Music City Bowl vs #22 LSU, W 31–28
Conference Independent
2014 record 8–5
Head coach Brian Kelly (5th year)
Offensive coordinator Mike Denbrock (1st as coordinator; 5th overall year)
Offensive scheme Spread
Defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder (1st year)
Base defense 3–4 multiple
Captain Cam McDaniel
Captain Nick Martin
Captain Austin Collinsworth
Captain Sheldon Day
Home stadium Notre Dame Stadium
(Capacity: 80,795)
Seasons
« 2013 2015 »
2014 Division I FBS independents football records
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
BYU               8 5  
Notre Dame               8 5  
Navy               8 5  
Army               4 8  
As of 29 November 2014; Rankings from AP Poll

The 2014 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team represented the University of Notre Dame in the 2014 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Fighting Irish were led by fifth-year head coach Brian Kelly and played their home games at Notre Dame Stadium. They compete as an independent.

The Irish started the season with a 6–0 record, ranked as high as #5 in both the AP Poll and the and Coaches Poll, but had a collapse in the second half of the season, losing five of their last six games to finish the regular season at 7–5. Notre Dame's defense suffered significant injuries and yielded over 41 points per game over those six games. For the first time in school history, the Irish gave up thirty points or more in seven consecutive contests.

Despite the disappointing season the Irish finished on a high note, upsetting the heavily favored LSU Tigers (8 point favorites) in the Music City Bowl, 31–28. Kicker Kyle Brindza kicked the game winning field goal as time expired. This was the first win by Notre Dame over a Southeastern Conference (SEC) team since beating the University of Tennesee Volunteers in 2005. This is also Notre Dame's first win over a ranked opponent in a bowl game since 1993, where they defeated #6 Texas A&M.

Before the season[edit]

Previous season[edit]

The Fighting Irish finished the 2013 regular season with an 8-4 record. They beat the Rutgers Scarlet Knights 29-16 in the 2013 Pinstripe Bowl.

2014 NFL Draft[edit]

The following former Notre Dame players were selected in the 2014 NFL Draft:

Main article: 2014 NFL Draft
Round Selection Player Position Team
1 16 Zack Martin Offensive Tackle Dallas Cowboys
2 46 Stephon Tuitt Defensive End Pittsburgh Steelers
2 52 Troy Niklas Tight End Arizona Cardinals
3 83 Louis Nix Defensive Tackle Houston Texans
3 89 Chris Watt Offensive Guard San Diego Chargers
4 139 Prince Shembo Outside Linebacker Atlanta Falcons
6 188 Bennett Jackson Cornerback New York Giants
6 189 T. J. Jones Wide Receiver Detroit Lions

Transfers out / departures[edit]

Stephon Tuitt, Louis Nix, Troy Niklas and George Atkinson III all chose to forgo their final year of eligibility and enter the 2014 NFL Draft. On April 4, 2014, sophomore cornerback Rashad Kinlaw was dismissed from the team due to violation of team rules. He subsequently left the university following his dismissal from the football program.[1]

Transfers in[edit]

Cody Riggs, a defensive back at Florida, announced he would transfer to Notre Dame in June after he received his degree in May 2014. He would be enrolled in a graduate studies program while exhausting his final season of eligibility.[2]

Coaching changes[edit]

Chuck Martin left to become the head coach of the Miami RedHawks.[3] Bob Diaco departed to become the head coach of the Connecticut Huskies.[4] Brian VanGorder, formerly the linebackers coach of the NFL's New York Jets, was hired to be the new defensive coordinator and linebackers coach.[5] Matt LaFleur, formerly the quarterbacks coach of the NFL's Washington Redskins, was hired to be the new quarterbacks coach.[6] Mike Denbrock was promoted to offensive coordinator, filling the void left by Martin.[7]

Recruiting class[edit]

Brian Kelly received 23 commitments in his fourth full recruiting class including two five-stars: linebacker Nyles Morgan and offensive tackle Quenton Nelson. The class included student-athletes from 14 states.

Personnel[edit]

Coaching staff[edit]

Name Position Year at Notre Dame Alma mater (Year)
Brian Kelly Head Coach 5th Assumption (1982)
Mike Denbrock Offensive Coordinator/Wide Receivers 5th Grand Valley State (1987)
Brian VanGorder Defensive Coordinator/Inside Linebackers 1st Wayne State (1980)
Harry Hiestand Offensive Line/Run Game Coordinator 3rd East Stroudsburg (1983)
Scott Booker Tight Ends/Special Teams Coordinator 3rd Kent State (2003)
Tony Alford Running Backs/Recruiting Coordinator 6th Colorado State (1992)
Kerry Cooks Defensive Backs 5th Iowa (2000)
Mike Elston Defensive Line 5th Michigan (1998)
Bob Elliott Outside Linebackers 3rd Iowa (1976)
Matt LaFleur Quarterbacks 1st Saginaw Valley State (2002)
Paul Longo Director of Football Strength and Conditioning 5th Wayne State (1981)

Roster[edit]

The roster is current as of October 8, 2014.

2014 Notre Dame Fighting Irish Football Roster - und.com

Quarterbacks

  • 6 Charlie Fiessinger – Senior
  • 5 Everett Golson - Senior
  • 14 DeShone Kizer - Freshman
  • 19 Montgomery Van Gorder - Freshman
  • 8 Malik ZaireSophomore

Running Backs

  • 46 Josh Anderson - Junior
  • 1 Greg Bryant - Sophomore
  • 25 Tarean Folston - Sophomore
  • 33 Cam McDaniel - Senior
  • 49 Tyler Plantz - Graduate Student

Wide Receivers

  • 11 Justin Brent - Freshman
  • 2 Chris Brown - Junior
  • 35 Cam Bryan - Junior
  • 3 Amir Carlisle - Senior
  • 87 Keenan Centlivre - Freshman
  • 10 DaVaris Daniels - Senior
  • 7 William Fuller - Sophomore
  • 39 Luke Hamel - Freshman
  • 15 Corey Holmes - Freshman
  • 81 Omar Hunter - Sophomore
  • 16 Torii Hunter, Jr. - Sophomore
  • 37 Eric Lee - Senior
  • 20 C. J. Prosise - Junior
  • 88 Corey Robinson - Sophomore
  • 86 Buster Sheridan - Sophomore
  • 83 Austin Webster - Freshman

Tight Ends

  • 9 Mike Heuerman - Sophomore
  • 18 Ben Koyack - Senior
  • 13 Tyler Luatua - Freshman
  • 80 Durham Smythe - Sophomore
  • 84 Ben Suttman - Sophomore
  • 82 Nic Weishar - Freshman
 

Offensive Lineman

  • 71 Alex Bars - Freshman
  • 70 Hunter Bivin - Sophomore
  • 63 Sam Bush - Freshman
  • 67 Jimmy Byrne - Freshman
  • 79 Steve Elmer - Sophomore
  • 65 Conor Hanratty - Senior
  • 75 Mark Harrell - Junior
  • 74 Christian Lombard - Graduate Student
  • 68 Mike McGlinchey - Sophomore
  • 62 Colin McGovern - Sophomore
  • 60 John Montelus - Sophomore
  • 53 Sam Mustipher - Freshman
  • 56 Quenton Nelson - Freshman
  • 78 Ronnie Stanley - Junior

Centers

  • 77 Matt Hegarty – Senior
  • 72 Nick Martin – Senior

Defensive Lineman

  • 92 Grant Blankenship - Freshman
  • 55 Jonathan Bonner - Freshman
  • 75 Daniel Cage - Freshman
  • 91 Sheldon Day - Junior
  • 95 Marquis Dickerson - Sophomore
  • 93 Jay Hayes - Freshman
  • 50 Chase Hounshell - Senior
  • 94 Jarron Jones - Junior
  • 64 Ryan Kilander - Freshman
  • 73 Scott Kingsley - Sophomore
  • 89 Jacob Matuska - Sophomore
  • 97 Patrick Mazza - Sophomore
  • 96 Peter Mokwuah - Freshman
  • 45 Romeo Okwara - Junior
  • 56 Anthony Rabasa - Senior
  • 90 Isaac Rochell - Sophomore
  • 98 Andrew Trumbetti - Freshman
  • 53 Justin Utupo - Graduate Student
  • 11 Ishaq Williams - Senior
  • 33 Jhonny Williams - Freshman
 

Linebackers

  • 30 Ben Councell - Senior
  • 42 Michael Deeb - Sophomore
  • 59 Jarrett Grace - Senior
  • 43 Kolin Hill - Freshman
  • 52 Austin Larkin - Sophomore
  • 48 Greer Martini - Freshman
  • 8 Kendall Moore - Graduate Student
  • 5 Nyles Morgan - Freshman
  • 17 James Onwualu - Sophomore
  • 44 Doug Randolph - Sophomore
  • 38 Joe Schmidt - Senior
  • 9 Jaylon Smith - Sophomore
  • 31 John Turner - Junior

Cornerbacks

  • 43 Josh Atkinson – Senior
  • 34 Jesse Bongiovi – Sophomore
  • 21 Jalen Brown – Senior
  • 12 Devin Butler – Sophomore
  • 40 Connor Cavalaris – Senior
  • 41 Matthias Farley – Senior
  • 35 Grant Hammann - Freshman
  • 36 Cole Luke – Sophomore
  • 2 Cody Riggs - Graduate Student
  • 6 KeiVarae Russell – Junior
  • 19 Nick Watkins - Freshman

Safeties

  • 29 Nicky Baratti – Junior
  • 28 Austin Collinsworth – Graduate Student
  • 4 Eilar Hardy – Senior
  • 46 Eamon McOsker – Junior
  • 36 Tyler Price – Sophomore
  • 39 Drew Recker – Sophomore
  • 10 Max Redfield – Sophomore
  • 22 Elijah Shumate – Junior
  • 42 Ernie Soto – Senior
  • 23 Drue Tranquill - Freshman
 

Kickers/Punters

  • 27 Kyle Brindza – Senior
  • 43 John Chereson – Sophomore
  • 85 Tyler Newsome - Freshman

Long Snappers

  • 61 Scott Daly – Junior
  • 99 Hunter Smith – Junior

Season[edit]

Schedule[edit]

Date Time Opponent# Rank# Site TV Result Attendance
August 30 3:30 pm Rice #17 Notre Dame StadiumSouth Bend, IN NBC W 48–17   80,795
September 6 7:30 pm Michigan #16 Notre Dame Stadium • South Bend, IN (Rivalry) NBC W 31–0   80,795
September 13 7:30 pm vs. Purdue #11 Lucas Oil StadiumIndianapolis, IN (Shillelagh Trophy/Shamrock Series) NBC W 30–14   56,832
September 27 8:00 pm vs. Syracuse #8 MetLife StadiumEast Rutherford, NJ ABC W 31–15   76,802
October 4 3:30 pm #14 Stanford #9 Notre Dame Stadium • South Bend, IN (Legends Trophy) NBC W 17–14   80,795
October 11 3:30 pm North Carolina #6 Notre Dame Stadium • South Bend, IN NBC W 50–43   80,795
October 18 8:00 pm at #2 Florida State #5 Doak Campbell StadiumTallahassee, FL ABC L 27–31   82,431
November 1 8:00 pm vs. Navy #6 FedEx FieldLandover, MD (Rivalry) CBS W 49–39   36,807
November 8 3:30 pm at #11 Arizona State #8 Sun Devil StadiumTempe, AZ ABC L 31–55   65,870
November 15 3:30 pm Northwestern #18 Notre Dame Stadium • South Bend, IN (Rivalry) NBC L 40–43 OT  80,795
November 22 3:30 pm #24 Louisville Notre Dame Stadium • South Bend, IN NBC L 28–31   80,795
November 29 3:30 pm at USC Los Angeles Memorial ColiseumLos Angeles, CA (Jeweled Shillelagh / Rivalry) FOX L 14–49   79,586
December 30 3:00 pm vs. #22 LSU LP FieldNashville, TN (Music City Bowl) ESPN W 31–28   60,149
daggerHomecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll released prior to game. All times are in Eastern Time.

Game notes[edit]

Rice[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Owls 7 3 0 7 17
#17 Fighting Irish 14 14 10 10 48
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
4–0 November 5, 1988 Notre Dame, 54–11

Michigan[edit]

Michigan–Notre Dame rivalry
1 2 3 4 Total
Wolverines 0 0 0 0 0
#16 Fighting Irish 7 14 7 3 31
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
16–24–1 September 7, 2013 Michigan, 41–30

In what looks to be the final meeting between Notre Dame and Michigan, Notre Dame embarrasses Michigan 31-0, giving the Irish their most lopsided win against the Wolverines. The game ends Michigan's NCAA record of consecutive games without being shutout. (The Wolverines were last shut out was 1984 versus Iowa). Michigan turned the ball over four times, while Notre Dame had zero turnovers. Michigan never reached the red zone in this game. Everett Golson went 23 for 34, throwing for 226 yards and three touchdowns for the Irish. Notre Dame goes to 2-0 on the year.

Purdue[edit]

Shillelagh Trophy / Shamrock Series
1 2 3 4 Total
Boilermakers 7 7 0 0 14
#11 Fighting Irish 7 10 7 6 30
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
57–26–2 September 14, 2013 Notre Dame, 31–24

Syracuse[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
#8 Fighting Irish 0 14 7 10 31
Orange 0 3 0 12 15
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
3–3 November 22, 2008 Syracuse, 24–23

Stanford[edit]

Legends Trophy
1 2 3 4 Total
#14 Cardinal 7 0 0 7 14
#9 Fighting Irish 0 7 0 10 17
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
18–10 November 30, 2013 Stanford, 27–20

With 1:09 left in the game and Notre Dame facing a 4th and 11 from Stanford's 23 yard line, Everett Golson finds a wide open Ben Koyack in the corner of the endzone to lift Notre Dame over Stanford 17-14. Stanford, the country's number one defense, had been giving up just 198 total yards of offense a game, but Notre Dame piled up 370 yards. Despite the Irish offense moving the ball, multiple mistakes including botched field goal snaps and turnovers in the red zone kept the game close throughout. Notre Dame's defense was dominant, giving up just 204 total yards and had two interceptions. Further, the Irish defense held Stanford to 47 yards rushing - Stanford's fewest rush yards in a game since 2007. With the win, Notre Dame moves to 5-0.

North Carolina[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Tar Heels 14 12 10 7 43
#6 Fighting Irish 7 21 7 15 50
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
16–2 October 11, 2008 North Carolina, 29–24

The 6th ranked Irish held off the North Carolina Tar Heels to win in a shootout 50-43. After trailing 14-0 in the 1st, the Irish found some rhythm to score 21 points in a row to take a 21-14 lead. The win marked the first time the Irish put up 50 points against an non-academy team since beating Stanford 57-7 in 2003.

Florida State[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
#5 Fighting Irish 7 10 7 3 27
• #2 Seminoles 7 3 14 7 31
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
2–5 December 29, 2011 Florida State, 18–14

The Irish, who were double digit underdogs, looked to score the game winning touchdown with :13 left after Everett Golson found a wide open Corey Robinson in the endzone. But the Irish were flagged for a pass interference penalty which took the touchdown away and pushed Notre Dame back 10 yards. Irish turned the ball over on the next play. The penalty will go down as controversial[8] in a game many consider the game of the year between two top 5 teams. Everett Golson showed why many consider him a Heisman candidate by completing 31 of 52 passes for 313 yards and throwing for 3 touchdowns, outplaying his counter part and Heisman winner Jameis Winston.

Navy[edit]

Navy–Notre Dame rivalry
1 2 3 4 Total
#6 Fighting Irish 14 14 0 21 49
Midshipmen 7 10 14 8 39
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
74–12–1 November 2, 2013 Notre Dame, 38–34

Arizona State[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
#8 Fighting Irish 3 7 7 14 31
# 11 Sun Devils 17 17 0 21 55
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
3–0 October 5, 2013 Notre Dame, 37–34

1st quarter scoring: ND – Kyle Brindza 46-yard field goal; ASU – Zane Gonzalez, 47-yard field goal; ASU – Jaelen Strong 13-yard pass from Taylor Kelly (Gonzalez kick); ASU – Demario Richard 1-yard run (Gonzalez kick)

2nd quarter scoring: ASU – Damarious Randall 59-yard interception (Gonzalez kick); ASU – Cameron Smith 43-yard pass from Kelly (Gonzalez kick); ASU – Gonzalez, 28-yard field goal; ND – Will Fuller 9-yard pass from Everett Golden (Brindza kick)

3rd quarter scoring:

Northwestern[edit]

Northwestern–Notre Dame rivalry
1 2 3 4 OT Total
Wildcats 9 14 3 14 3 43
#15 Fighting Irish 20 7 7 6 0 40
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
37–8–2 September 2, 1995 Northwestern, 17–15

Louisville[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Cardinals 14 3 7 7 31
Fighting Irish 3 3 14 8 28
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
0–0 First Meeting N/A

For the first time in the history of Notre Dame football, the Irish have given up 30 points or more in six straight game. And for the second week in a row, a missed field goal by kicker Kyle Brindza late in the game dooms the Irish. Notre Dame has is now 1-4 in the last 5 games after starting 6-0.

Southern California[edit]

Jeweled Shillelagh
1 2 3 4 Total
Fighting Irish 0 7 7 0 14
Trojans 21 14 14 0 49
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
45–35–5 October 19, 2013 Notre Dame, 14–10

LSU–Music City Bowl[edit]

Music City Bowl
1 2 3 4 Total
Fighting Irish 7 14 7 3 31
#22 Tigers 7 7 14 0 28
Overall Record Previous Meeting Previous Winner
5–5 January 3, 2007 LSU, 41–14

Rankings[edit]

Ranking movements
Legend: ██ Increase in ranking. ██ Decrease in ranking.
NR = Not ranked. RV = Received votes. ( ) = First place votes.
Week
Poll Pre 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 Final 
AP 17 16 11 9 8 9 6 5 7 6 8 15 RV NR NR NR RV 
Coaches' 17 15 11 9 8 8 5 5 8 7 8 16 RV RV NR NR RV 
CFP Not released 10 10 18 NR NR NR NR Not released


Postseason[edit]

Awards[edit]

References[edit]