Pete DiPrimio, sports columnist and college beat writer for The News-Sentinel of Fort Wayne, Ind., takes his best shots on the world of Notre Dame football.

Sunday, October 22

Irish Rise To The Challenge

So what does Notre Dame's dramatic come-from-behind victory over UCLA tell you? For one, the Irish (6-1) are experienced and poised and mentally tough when it matters most.

Defensively, they made stops when they had to. Offensively, on their final drive, they were flawless. Of course, it helps to have a quarterback such as Brady Quinn, who gave his Heisman stock a dramatic boost, and a receiver such as Jeff Samardzija (pictured), who has a knack for rising to the occasion.

Still, Notre Dame has to play better. UCLA (4-3) was a good, but not great team, and if the Irish are to remain a BCS factor, they need more offensive production, especially from the line, and can't allow big passing plays.

The schedule is in their favor for the next four weeks, so they should rolll until their trip to USC in late November.

And if you want to criticize the victory, stay far away from Charlie Weis. At least for a day, he's going to savor this.


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