Blue and Gold Illustrated

Oct. 23, 2017

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

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Page 28 of 55 OCT. 23, 2017 29 NOTRE DAME HEAD COACH BRIAN KELLY … On when it was clear junior quarterback Brandon Wimbush couldn't go: "It was off and on. Wednesday he looked particularly good. Thursday he looked a little better. Friday he had the urge he wanted to play. "Then today, he just didn't have it in him. He just didn't feel great. Didn't have any bounce. Yesterday he looked good in our walk through preparation, and he had a lot of energy. I hadn't really made a decision until when I saw him today. He had no bounce in his step." On whether the Irish are playing closer to his stan- dard: "I'm more pleased with the mental preparation, which was certainly an area that was of great focus. It has really been the core of this football team and how they approach things, especially the second half. "The second half was not something that was handled very well last year. They're handling it very well [this season]." NOTRE DAME SOPHOMORE QUARTERBACK IAN BOOK … On how quickly the team got on same page with the game plan: "The guys did great adjusting to it. Obvi- ously it's different when someone has to come in there and lead the offense who hasn't been doing it the whole season. "So, I tip my hat off to the other guys on the offense who adjusted well." NOTRE DAME FIFTH-YEAR SENIOR OFFENSIVE TACKLE MIKE MCGLINCHEY … On what it says about the offensive line when the team can rush for 300-plus yards multiple times: "We shoot for con- sistency. Some say the mark of greatness is being able to be as consistent as possible, so that's what we're shooting for. "Whatever the stat line is, as long as we can win games the way we're winning games, we're happy with however we're putting points on the board." On if he's satisfied so far this season: "I don't know I'm ever satisfied that we're 5-1 because the one [loss] is there, but it definitely feels good the way we've been winning. It takes a lot to win in college football, and to win as convincingly as we've been doing the last four weeks, it's really been something we've taken a lot of pride in. "We watch the film every week and you can see the grind that we're going through and how we're being able to take over football games. That's all across the board, all three phases; offense, defense, spe- cial teams. That's something we've been preaching since January. "We want to dominate our opponent physically, mentally and any other way we can. The way we've been winning has certainty felt good, and we've just got to keep the train rolling." NOTRE DAME SOPHOMORE DEFENSIVE END JULIAN OKWARA … On what he thinks sophomore end Daelin Hayes, senior end Andrew Trumbetti and himself have added to third-down packages: "Those are obviously our spe- cialties. I feel like whenever we get to third down, we're looking to go get a stop. That's just what we practice every day. "We practice getting off the ball, getting to the quarter- back, reading the tackle and just trying to get off the ball and make the plays." NOTRE DAME SENIOR ROVER DRUE TRANQUILL … On the 1-1 start and the confidence level of the team moving forward: "I think our mentality necessarily wasn't we're going to be 5-1 … I think we knew as a group that we were going to bounce back that next week and we were going to be 2-1. Then that week after that we were going to be 3-1, and after that 4-1 and 5-1. Now we're sitting here happy with where we're at. "Still wish we could have got that one against Georgia. I felt like defensively we could have made some more plays there to win that ballgame. Maybe we'll get a crack at them later in the season. I'm really happy with where we're at and getting excited for USC already." — Corey Bodden FROM THE LOCKER ROOM Head coach Brian Kelly said junior quarterback Brandon Wimbush — who suffered a foot injury the previous week — "just didn't have it" and "didn't feel great" during pregame warm-ups, so he opted not to play him against the Tar Heels. PHOTO BY BILL PANZICA

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