Matt Cashore / IrishIllustrated.com

Beyond the Numbers: Irish Offense

A look at Notre Dame’s top skill position performers from what is, at present, the sixth most effective touchdown producing machine in program history.

THE TEAM EFFORT

With one game remaining, it’s likely the 2015 squad will finish tied for fourth – with last year’s team – among the top touchdown producers in program history. (Solo possession of third place is plausible.)

1991 – 60 (10-3): 40 rushing, 20 passing
1992 – 56 (10-1-1): 36 rushing, 20 passing
2014 – 54 (8-5): 24 rushing, 30 passing
2005 – 53 (9-3): 21 rushing, 32 passing
2006 – 51 (10-3): 14 rushing, 37 passing
2015 – 50 (10-2): 27 rushing, 23 passing
1988 – 50 (12-0): 34 rushing, 16 passing
1993 – 49 (11-1): 39 rushing, 10 passing
1996 – 49 (8-3): 34 rushing, 15 passing
1995 – 49 (9-3): 32 rushing, 17 passing
1989 – 47 (12-1): 45 rushing, 2 passing  
2011 – 46 (8-5): 25 rushing, 21 passing
1999 – 43 (5-7): 25 rushing, 17 passing
2009 – 43 (6-6): 13 rushing, 30 passing
1990 – 42 (9-3): 34 rushing, 8 passing

-- Notre Dame’s 27 (and counting) rushing touchdowns this season is the most at the program since Lou Holtz’s final Irish squad rushed for 34 in 11 games in 1996.

THE CHAIN MOVERS

Matt Cashore / IrishIllustrated.com

Notre Dame’s regular season leaders among its 270 first downs accrued (includes first downs gained by penalties drawn):

-- C.J. Prosise 59 – Includes a season-high (for any member of the Irish) of 11 vs. Navy
-- Will Fuller 41 – Though never more than five in one game
-- DeShone Kizer 35 – In his case, all rushing first downs.
-- Josh Adams 30 – Includes a clutch 10 at Stanford
-- Chris Brown 26 – Career-best four vs. Ga. Tech
-- Amir Carlisle 22 – Nearly 1/3 (7) occurred vs. Boston College
-- Torii Hunter (20) – Best effort was 4 at Clemson including the potential game-tying touchdown
-- Corey Robinson (12) – Never more than two in a game.
-- Aliz’e Jones (6)
-- Dexter Williams (5)
-- Malik Zaire (5)
-- Brandon Wimbush (3)

-- Durham Smythe (3)
-- Tarean Folston, Nic Weishar, and Chase Hounshell with one apiece

Not surprisingly, Prosise and Fuller accounted for 37 percent of the first downs gained by Irish players this season. Add Kizer and Adams to the mix and four Notre Dame players garnered 61 percent of the squad’s first downs.

None from the quartet is out of eligibility this season.

THE GASHERS
Matt Cashore / IrishIllustrated.com

Ranking the Irish by gains of 10-19 and 20-29 yards this season:

-- C.J Prosise (46) – Includes a team-high (by a wide margin) 38 gains between 10-19 yards
-- Will Fuller (24) – Posted 18 from 10-19; 6 of 20-plus
-- Josh Adams (18) – Includes 6 at Stanford and another 4 at Pittsburgh
-- Chris Brown (18) – Includes 14 between 10-19
-- DeShone Kizer (15) – Again, all rushing plays. Includes three runs 20-29 yards
-- Torii Hunter, Jr (11)
-- Amir Carlisle (10)
-- Corey Robinson (8)
-- Malik Zaire (3)
-- Dexter Williams (2)
-- Brandon Wimbush (2)
-- Tarean Folston (1)

THE PLAYMAKERS
USA Today Sports Images

Gains of 30-39 and 40-plus yards over the 12 regular season contests:

-- Will Fuller (15) – A remarkable nine in excess of 40 yards, seven of them touchdowns. (Add two more TD of 30+)
-- C.J Prosise (5) – Three of 40 or more
-- Josh Adams (3) – From 70, 98, and 62 – all for scores
-- Chris Brown (3) – Though none of 40+
-- Aliz’e Jones (3)
-- Amir Carlise (2)
-- DeShone Kizer (2)
-- Malik Zaire, Brandon Wimbush, and Torii Hunter, Jr. with one apiece

THE TARGETS
Matt Cashore / IrishIllustrated.com


Who did DeShone Kizer (and Malik Zaire) seek out over the 12 game slate to date? The totals listed include pass interferences drawn, which is not an official pass attempt.

-- Will Fuller (99) – Includes a team-high 6 pass interference penalties drawn (had 8 last year) plus a team-high 6 drops, though that’s less than half his total from last year (13)
-- Chris Brown (71) – Just one drop; targeted 72 times in 13 games last season
-- Amir Carlisle (42) – One painful drop (TD) at Stanford; drew one P.I.
-- Torii Hunter (35) – One drop (Clemson)
-- C.J. Prosise (33) – One drop; one pass interference drawn
-- Corey Robinson (32) – Down from 75 last season (13 games); Drew 3 P.I. and famously dropped a pair of passes at Clemson
-- Aliz’e Jones (24) – Almost twice the total of the other four tight ends. One drop; drew two P.I.
-- Nic Weishar (8) – One drop; one P.I.
-- Josh Adams (7)
-- Thrown into the stands (4)
-- Durham Smythe (3) – Includes fake field goal touchdown from Kizer
-- Tyler Luatua (2) – No completions
-- Equanimeous St. Brown, C.J. Sanders, and Chase Hounshell with one apiece.

In a much smaller sample size, Malik Zaire’s 40 targets were as follows:

-- Fuller 15
-- Brown 9
-- Carlisle 5
-- Hunter 3
-- Robinson 2
-- Prosise 2
-- Smythe 2
-- Jones 1
-- Luatua 1

Kizer would thus have the rest save for the following from Brandon Wimbush: Hunter 2, Fuller 1, St. Brown 1, Sanders 1


IrishIllustrated.com Top Stories