I think the culture shock was at its worst during and immediately following the game. Since then, the Irish have used it to tweak strategy, personnel, recruiting and how they’ll handle bowl prep the next time. Sustained success is what Kelly wants. The loss has become his rallying cry.
4. Where do you think Notre Dame’s greatest strengths are as a team, and where do you see potential weaknesses?
The balance of power still rests with this team’s defense. This will drive a BCS run, but the offense could cause that to unravel. Coaching is a strength. Sustained recruiting is a strength. Talented wild cards like USC transfer Amir Carlisle and freshmen Jaylon Smith, Greg Bryant and Max Redfield are all strengths. Potential weaknesses? The quarterback position and offensive line depth.
5. Last October, excitement and pageantry took over Norman because of Notre Dame’s visit. Do you expect a similar build-up in South Bend this season?
Notre Dame is used to elite programs coming to Notre Dame Stadium, so many times the build-up is more subdued than outsiders may expect. Oklahoma is different. Its pedigree, its fan base, its coach (who ND fans long coveted) will coax a bowl-like atmosphere in South Bend, I believe.
The 8 Best Natural Gas Stocks. Find Out How to Invest.