Notre Dame 2023 Spring Football: The pressure is on

0 19

College football practice sessions will soon begin in earnest on campuses across the country. Usually, these weeks of practice sessions provide a low taste of football at a time when there is none. This gives fans a great opportunity to enjoy some low-stress action before the extended summer break.

Since the aforementioned statements are true most of the time, there are always exceptions to any generality. I believe Notre Dame Football will be under unusual scrutiny and pressure this Spring due to some of the recent offseason events, especially the public outcry over anything that happened with the offensive coordinator.


Notre Dame offensive coordinator candidate: Gerad Parker

Let’s explore why this spring session is so special and so stressful.

Change the subject

Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

The past few weeks, perhaps some of the slowest historically for college football content, have been anything but for the Irish, and not in a good way. Much of this press, including plenty from yours truly, centers around the Notre Dame PR nightmare that followed the slow pace of the offensive coordinator search.

The best thing that can happen to the Irish is to hit the pitch and provide some real football content to report on rather than off the pitch issues. That being said, especially offensively, Notre Dame fans would like to be reassured about recruiting [autotag]Gerard Parker[/autotag] as an OC with a Spring full of capable offense culminating in an exciting Blue & Gold game. Fairly or unfairly, the pressure is on Parker and the team to deliver in this regard.

Gerard Parker Intrigue

What to expect out of Notre Dame's offense with Gerad Parker as coordinator

What to expect out of Notre Dame’s offense with Gerad Parker as coordinator

New Notre Dame offensive coordinator Gerad Parker addresses the meeting after being formally introduced as Tommy Rees’ successor Monday, Feb. 20, 2023 at Notre Dame Stadium.
Ndi Ndfb Gerard Parker Press Conference 1 02202023

Speaking of Parker, congratulations on his promotion. It’s just a shame that due to mistakes in the process somewhere along the way to being hired, his tenure is starting to take on a negative tone of opinion in many circles and that’s not his fault in any way.

Notre Dame fans will be paying more attention this Spring to everything the offense does. Good, bad or in the middle. If things go well, the tone will lighten up and become more confident heading into the Summer. If the spring looks rough, questioning about the recruiting process and negativity will persist. Notre Dame needs to avoid this. Again, the emphasis is on.

Lots of interesting quarters to look at

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time in a long time, Notre Dame is ready to have several QBs on the team that really excite the fans. Grad transfer [autotag]Sam Hartman[/autotag]collegiate work is extremely impressive as is the potential for home growing [autotag]Tyler Buchner[/autotag].

It would be ideal if both quarterbacks who have different skill sets had good spring sessions. A program can never have enough signal callers and if they both look effective this spring, and I suspect they will, it will show that all players are in on Parker and the crime is about to be completed.

Year 2 for Freeman

Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports

Most reasonable people understood that there would be many challenges in Marcus’ first year at the helm and there was a level of understanding of that and some sort of “grace period” for him to settle.

Year 2 is going to be very different. In the past calendar year, this team has become much more Freeman in terms of staff and players. High level results will be expected both in terms of big game performances and not getting stopped against inferior opponents like last year. The “grace period” is quickly coming to an end and Marcus knows it.

Persistence into the summer

[Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union]

This winter has been rocky from Notre Dame’s point of view. Bad headlines often. Questions about administration and support for Freeman. Concerns about recruitment processes of key assistants. A solid spring would go a long way to putting some of these worries to sleep.

These spring sessions are the Irish’s last chance to reassure everyone that the program is indeed stable and ready to compete next year at a high level. There’s always pressure on Notre Dame, but this kind is unique. Unfortunately, the team, the coaches and the players have the difficult task of overcoming the concerns of the fans who are not mainly in the formation but at the administrative level. I feel they will rise to the challenge.

Check out the latest edition of the Always Irish show here as I talk about how special this spring season is from warm sunny Florida!

For more Irish news and notes follow John on Twitter @an-hishtiirishINC, Always Irish on our Youtube and or your favorite audio podcast provider.

Story first appeared on Fighting Irish Wire

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.