Irish Fall to Purdue

Notre Dame entertained the Purdue Boilermakers on Saturday, and the visitors came away with a convincing 41-16 victory.

The game was highlighted by the play of Irish quarterback Brady Quinn, and Heisman candidate, Kyle Orton. Quinn was impressive in this game but Orton lived up to his press clippings and guided the Boilermakers to a lopsided win.

Irish Eyes talked with some of the Irish personnel after the game.

Junior guard Bob Morton.

Talk about today's game.

"It was rough, you know. We put a lot of work getting ready for this game, and it is definitely tough to have it turn out the way it did today. Needless to say Purdue was the better team on the field today."

Purdue's offense against Notre Dame's defense.

"As an offense, you always want to run the ball to score points and to kill time. We knew we had to put points on the board to win, and we definitely didn't put enough on today. And that definitely is not a great feeling."

Half time mood

"It was similar to the way it has been the past couple of weeks. We knew we had to come out in the second half and really put the heat on. Whether we are winning or losing we have the same kind of mentality when we come in at half time because basically it is like starting a new game when we go back out there."

Purdue's defense

"We knew they were good and going to be one of our biggest tests of the year. And they proved to be that. They just played outstanding."

Defensive Coordinator Kent Baer

Was there anything you could have done to slow down this offense?

"I thought we played decently in the first half other than that 98-yard drive. We misplayed a couple of things, and the kid made some great throws. We didn't necessarily play some things well right there, but we came out in the third quarter and tried to do too many things and probably tried to make too many things happen and it hurt us. I said all along you can't give up the big play and we did. My hat is off to them and they are a good team and Orton is a heckuva football player."

The Purdue 97-yard touchdown throw

"It was a great throw and a great catch. It was something I take the blame for because we were just trying to make something happen. We were in a pressure situation and we didn't get it. He made a great throw and a great adjustment."

Were some of the big plays the result of being over aggressive?

"It might have been. I still think we are a heckuva a football team. I like our attitude and it just happened. We might have been overly aggressive, but I thought we were a little tentative starting out. But you know we will come back stronger than ever. My hat is off to them as that is a good football team. I said all week, you don't get those stats just being mediocre."

Was the score indicative of the outcome?

"I don't want to get into that, but there certainly could have been a different score at half time for obvious reasons. You can't give up big plays and the 98-yard drive hurt us as we had a couple of broken coverages in that and it hurts us. We will learn from it."

Offensive Line Coach Mike Denbrock

Success of Notre Dame's tight ends

"They are a big zone pressure team. When they do bring pressure and leave some zones open here and there; whether it is down the middle of the field with the tight end or in the flat area. When you start bringing people in three under three-deep type zone, you're one guy short covering the underneath zones, and we were able to slip Anthony in there a couple of times."

How good is Fasano?

"I think he has a chance to be a very, very good football player. I like his attitude and his work. That's really the biggest thing that makes him a good player, he works at it. I'm very proud of the way all the tight ends played today. But Anthony obviously had a very good game for us."

Fasano took big hits

"He is a tough kid. I think that's the number one thing he's got, he's very self-motivated, a self starter, a guy who feels he can make plays for our offense, and today he was in a position to do that and he did it."

Offensive Coordinator Bill Diedrick

What do you hope to take from today and develop for the rest of the season?

"I think you take the positive things and you regroup, and you take the positive things and rebuild from there."

What stalled the running game?

"I think two things - 1) they were getting off blocks and 2) we weren't sustaining our blocks."

Brady's performance

"I think if you throw the ball 49 times and don't throw a pick or throw into coverage, that's a pretty good day. I just think that in assessing his play, I was pleased. I think it was a great step up from where he has been."

If Darius hadn't fumbled, would the outcome be different?

"I think it gives you an opportunity to stay in the ball game and have the opportunity to fight. I don't think you ever know what the sway of emotions will be. I think that if you put seven points on the board, as opposed to them going 98 yards, I'm sure it was a huge turning point."

Do you think Darius Walker will hit a so-called freshman wall?

"Oh, I think it will probably happen at some point. I think that's why getting Ryan Grant back will be most beneficial. I think also the development of the younger kids so that you don't have only one horse in the stable. I think that's something we looked at two years ago and I think we are well aware of that."

Mike Goolsby

What did the 97-yard bomb do to you guys emotionally?

"It takes a lot out of you, but we know our goal is to keep them out of the end zone. If we held them to three points, we would have been happy. It was definitely a blow to us."

As the game wore on, do you think some of the players tried to do more than was called for or was it just one of those days?

"We were just talking about that in the shower; it was just one of those days. We're well coached enough to know to take care of our individual responsibilities and play within the defense. We talk about that all the time. I don't think it was a case of guys trying to do too much, it was just a case of him making the play and putting the ball in there."

As a leader, what is the first thing you are going to let the team know tomorrow and Tuesday when you get back together?

"Let them know we didn't quit, that we continued to play hard and it was just one of those days. We have to continue to do the same things and we'll stick together and just continue to play together and that was one thing I was proud of today."

Senior Defensive Back Preston Jackson

Talk about the performance of Kyle Orton.

"He's smart, but we just made him look a little better than he is. We didn't play our best at all."

What was it about their receivers that gave you a hard time?

"It wasn't their receivers, it was us. We didn't use our techniques. It's as simple as that."

Yards gained after the receptions

"They were obviously able to do that. You saw it and we saw it. When it comes down to it, we did not execute and that's the biggest thing of all."

You sound upset about the results.

"I'm frustrated. It just wasn't us today. It wasn't a good performance by all three sides of the ball and that's not Notre Dame Football."

Explain what you meant about Orton being a smart quarterback.

"He's by far the most athletic and he's brainy. He's real smart and caught onto a lot of things we were doing early and made adjustments to them."


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