Copyright by Global Electronic Telecommunications, publishers of IrishEyes.Com
September 22, 2001
Record Crowd Sees Stirring Tribute
By The IrishEyes.Com NewsService
NOTRE DAME, Ind. (IE) – A crowd of 80,795 showed up for the Irish home opener Saturday. It was a record, surpassing the 80,653 for last year's Boston College game.
While they didn't witness the best Irish football ever played—to the contrary—they did take part in a colorful, stirring tribute to the victims of the September 11 attack, their families and fellow countrymen.
Some 80,000 paper American flags were distributed by Notre Dame students to fans entering the stadium, and the stadium was awash with them held aloft as the colors were presented amid the playing of America the Beautiful and the Star Spangled Banner.
Notre Dame students also passed around about 700 buckets, asking for contributions from those in the crowd for the victims of the attack. University President the Rev. Edward A. Malloy led the crowd in a prayer before the game.
Charles Rogers, the 6-4 wideout for MSU whose catch and run was the difference maker for the Spartans, said he just spun out of the arms of Vontez Duff and headed for paydirt.
"They came with an all-out blitz," said the speedy Rogers. "I kind of spun out and saw open grass. I was just trying to make sure I wouldn't get stripped from behind."
Duff, who was on an island, said he just didn't make the play.
"I was in the football position. I just didn't wrap up," said Duff. "I didn't make the tackle. It was a little slant. It's all about making plays and I didn't make a play on that one."
POOCH PUNTS: MSU overcame 14 penalties for 101 yards. That's 25 penalties in two games for the Spartans….
Courtney Watson had another impressive game at linebacker. He recorded his first career quarterback sack and finished with a game high 10 tackles (four solo and six assisted). He now has 28 tackles on the season, leading the team….
Oh,oh. Here' we go again, looking for the last time when. The Irish season point total of 20 is the lowest two-game total to start a season since 1978 when the Irish scored 3 points and 14 points in losses to Missouri and Michigan, respectively.
Here's another one. Notre Dame has not defeated Michigan State since a 21-20 win in East Lansing, Mich., on Sept. 18, 1994. We believe that's when Ron Powlus threw four interceptions.
And another one: Notre Dame starts the season 0-2 for only the fifth time in school history (1896, 1963, 1978, 1986). This also is the third time Notre Dame has lost back-to-back home openers. It also happened in 1962-63 and 1994-95.
Michigan State now accounts for three of Davie's six career home losses and all three of his home losses by more than a field goal.
Battle could be out from four to six weeks with a broken fibula…
Joey Hildbold averaged 50.1 yards on eight punts. For the season, he has 15 punts for 721 yards, an average of 48.1 yards per punt. --30—