Saturday, November 29, 2008

Coming Soon - Basketball Coverage; Also, Help Wanted

The site will be covering Notre Dame men's and women's basketball soon. Both programs are off to an excellent start and are ranked. The coverage will begin, in earnest, after football season. So, be looking for that.

Also, Domer Sports Report is looking for more help. We need help in the area of writing articles. So, if you are interested in writing for us, please contact Mark at

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Irish Battle Trojans...Before the Trip to LA

This weekend may prove to be a very important one when it comes down to the Notre Dame/USC rivalry in the next few years. Sure the teams do not play for another week but this weekend features an opportunity to take dead aim at the Trojans recruiting class of 2009 with both linebacker Manti Te'o and safety Byron Moore making official visits to South Bend this afternoon.

Manti Te'o is amongst the most highly sought after defensive recruits in the nation, earning a five star rating from both Rivals and Scout at the middle linebacker position. Te'o is being recruited by nearly every college in the nation and has taken a visit to UCLA and has also attended two of USC's summer camps. Besides Notre Dame this weekend, Te'o is expected to visit the likes of Stanford and BYU as well as USC before he chooses a school so unless he is overly wowed by South Bend in the middle of November, don't expect a commit here this weekend. The Irish have been able to land some of the biggest names on the offensive side of the ball in recruiting wars the past few years but Te'o would be the first 5 Star recruit Charlie Weis will have been able to bring in on the defensive side of the football.

Byron Moore, a former UCLA commit and current commit to USC will be on Notre Dame's campus this weekend as well as he has recently sought after the Irish instead of the Irish going after him. Moore plays in the same district as Irish WR Commit Shaquelle Evans and the two sound like decent friends. After Evans committed to Notre Dame it was Moore who actually called Notre Dame, hoping to get noticed by the Irish. It payed off as Evans will also be on campus this weekend and don't think Charlie Weis wouldn't like to steal one of USC's charmed recruits right out from under him. To me Moore seems to have a real interest in Notre Dame and if the Irish are to see a commit this weekend it would most likely be from him.

The third and final high school senior visiting the Golden Dome this weekend is Tyler Gaffney, one of the most highly touted fullbacks in the nation. Gaffney also lists Stanford and USC as schools he is considering to attend. The Irish have been somewhat disappointing in what Asaph Schwap has brought to the table after playing now in his fourth year and would definitely like to get a fullback in whom they may have more confidence in to do a bit more. Gaffney is averaging over 10 yards a carry for Cathedral Catholic High School in San Diego this year as he has scored 30 touchdowns. With a visit already set for Stanford in January I feel it will likely go very close to National Signing Day before Gaffney decides where he will call home the next four seasons.

Also on campus will be juniors Corey Cooper (ATH), Kyle Prater (LB), and Chandler Whitmer (QB).


Friday, November 21, 2008

Where Saturday Will Be Won

Notre Dame is riding a high defensively of late, pretty much handling both Navy and Boston College on that side of the ball over the past two weeks. This week a Syracuse team comes to Notre Dame Stadium for the Irish's senior day festivities. The first class of Charlie Weis' recruits have been through a lot in the blue and gold and would like nothing more than to walk off the field in South Bend one last time as winners and in a dominating fashion.

Syracuse brings amongst the worst run defenses in the nation to Notre Dame tomorrow. So far in 2008 Syracuse has held just one team to less than four yards a carry for an entire game and that was the vaunted Northeastern rushing attack. The game plan for Notre Dame should be very simple this coming weekend in that the Irish will pound the ball, pound it some more, and then some more after that.

With Michael Floyd out do not expect to see the Irish counting on Jimmy Clausen to win them the football game. Obviously there are still the threats of Golden Tate, Duval Kamara, Kyle Rudolph, and David Grimes amongst others but when a team allows this many yards per contest on the ground I expect to see the Irish counting on the running game to chew clock and score points. This will also set up the play action game if Notre Dame so chooses to go to it.

Cameron Dantley heads the Syracuse offense as their quarterback but has been far from outstanding this fall. So far on the year he has completed almost exactly 50% of his passes for 1117 yards and 9 TD's to go along with only four picks. He may not win the Orange the game but he will not cost them it either.

If Dantley is to throw the ball it will likely be to Dante Davis, a talented sophomore who is Dantley's favorite target. On the year they have connected 27 times for over ten yards a catch and one score. Other than Davis, Mike Owen may see a few passes thrown his way but don't get confused, the passing game goes through Davis for the Orange.

The leader statistically on offense for Syracuse is senior RB Chris Brinkley. On the year Brinkley has compiled impressive totals of just over 1000 yards on the ground and six rushing touchdowns.

On defense Syracuse has been a disaster. Only once this year have the Orange allowed fewer than 30 points in a game, even the Akron Zips were able to put 42 on them early in the season. As stated above the Orange have not stopped the run all season, but the Irish haven't run the ball particularly well outside of the Navy and Purdue games.

This is where the running game comes up big for the Irish as they will "run away" from Syracuse, if you will...

Nick: Notre Dame 31 Syracuse 10
Mark: Notre Dame 35 Syracuse 14

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Irish Hoopsters Find Win Column in Season Opener

By: Nick Shepkowski

Despite a slow defensive start the Fighting Irish Men's Basketball Team found the win column in the season opener this past Sunday night at the Joyce Center. Leading 30-29 with 4:58 to go in the first half the Irish took over in large part thanks to Luke Harangody who scored seven of Notre Dame's final 14 points as they ended the first half on a 14-4 run which put them up 44-33 at the break. From there the Irish put it on cruise control as they came out firing in the second half, going on a 15-2 run to expand their lead to 24. For all intensive purposes the game was over at this point as the Spartans of USC Upstate could only pull within 18 from then out.

Eleven Irish saw playing time on Sunday night with nine of them scoring points. Reigning Big East Player of the Year Luke Harangody paced Notre Dame with 30 points and fourteen boards while Luke Zeller came off the bench to add 18 more points. Senior forward Bobby Davis led the visiting Spartans with 14 points while going 7/15 from the field.

Notre Dame moves to 1-0 after the season opening win and now will go west as they travel to Loyola Marymount this Friday before heading to the Maui Shootout. While on the islands the Irish will open with the rebuilding Indiana Hoosiers before possibly meeting the likes of #1 North Carolina and #7 Texas amongst others.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Irish Frosh, Soph to Miss Remainder of Regular Season

By: Nick Shepkowski

Michael Floyd has been amongst the scariest freshmen in college football this season as he has pulled in 46 receptions, totaling 702 yards, and seven touchdowns so far this season. Unfortunately for the Irish they will be without Floyd or linebacker Brian Smith for the final two contests of the regular season as both were injured in the first half of the 27-21 win against Navy this past Saturday in Baltimore. Floyd injured his right knee on the third play of the game while attempting to block during a run by James Aldridge. He was seen with an icepack on his knee during the first half before eventually being carted off. Without a doubt the Irish offense will suffer a severe blow in the coming weeks without having Floyd as a weapon in their arsenal. Despite not having Floyd as a weapon this past weekend, Jimmy Clausen came back from a rough start and finished the game 15/18 for 110 yards but was still guilty of two interceptions.

The defense will also be a step slower without Smith who strained his knee as well in the first quarter of Saturday's game. Smith currently has the fourth most tackles on the defensive side of the ball for Notre Dame and is a key cog in the ever improving defense.

The Irish return to action this Saturday as they host Syracuse at 2:30 EST on NBC. They then close out the regular season a week later in prime-time as they travel to take on #6 USC.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Irish look to Avoid Losing Streak of Own vs. Navy

If there has ever been a must-win game for Charlie Weis during his tenure at Notre Dame than this is the week as the Irish get set to travel to Baltimore to take on the Naval Academy, trying to avoid losing two in a row to the Midshipmen. It was a magical day for all of those with any ties to Annapolis but to Notre Dame fans, November 3, 2007 was a day that will never be forgotten. After 43 consecutive victories, the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame lost at home to the Middies.

So what has to be done in order to make sure this does not happen two years in a row? Let's start with something that has been a positive for Notre Dame in the past few weeks with the defense. A week ago the Irish allowed only 17 (7 of them on a pick 6) points on the defensive side of the ball, despite the offense having four turnovers. This week it is pretty easy to guess what is going to be shown by Navy: Pitch left, pitch right, up the gut, up the gut, pitch get the point. Navy will enter Baltimore looking to run the ball down Notre Dame's throat's and its up to the Irish to stop it.

Navy enters with the number two ranked rushing team in the nation, following only Nevada. With 308 yards a game on average and 5.44 yards a carry coming in, Notre Dame has their work cut out to stop this running attack. Shun White enters leading the Midshipmen with 834 rush yards, having 348 of those come against Towson in week one. Eric Kettani adds in 673 more rushing yards and two scores while quarterback Jarod Bryant has accumulated 440 yards and five scores on the ground this season. Ricky Dobbs will also see carries for the Midshipmen as he has totaled 342 yards and six scores on the ground. Let's hope we force Navy into several 3rd and longs and make them put the ball in the air.

Navy ranks second to last, only ahead of Army when it comes to passing yards per game. However, when your rush offense ranks second its not as major of problem as one would think. Jarod Bryant has thrown only 32 passes all year, completing 18 of them for 265 yards. If forced to a backup, Navy will go with (get ready for it) Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada who is 13 of 18 on the year.

The Naval Academy ranks thirtieth in rush defense as they have allowed only 1047 yards on the ground this season, giving up 3.5 yards per carry. By comparision, Notre Dame has allowed 1187 yards but 4.0 yards per attempt. The Irish must improve overall, much like we saw a week ago at BC in order escape another upset from Navy.

Where you can expect the Irish to find the most success is, as usual, through the air. Navy has had a very tough time stopping the air game this season (which is weird seeing the technology they have these days). So far teams have averaged 256 yards a contest against them and there is no reason Jimmy Clausen should not be able to match or better that this Satruday. Expect to see the Irish really spread Navy out, many four or five receiver sets. Notre Dame really shouldn't have a problem throwing the ball around this weekend, if they do then a Navy streak against Notre Dame is a serious possibility.

How many points will Notre Dame need to score in order to win this weekend? That is the question many are asking but I feel differently as I am gaining more and more confidence in the defense as each week comes and goes. The Irish should be able to put up at least 35 on Navy (heck, Pitt did them in for 42) and that should be plenty.

What I expect to see is Notre Dame try and get up a couple of scores early and see if they can get Navy to go away from the strictly running game. If so it could be blowout city, if not, it may be a last second nail biter.

Prediction Time:

Nick (6-3): Notre Dame 38 Navy 24
Mark (7-2): Notre Dame 38 Navy 28

Monday, November 10, 2008

Six Irish Commits Invited to Play in Postseason All-American Games

By Michael Rubin, Domer Sports Report
Edited By Mark Allen

Notre Dame Football
2009 Recruiting

Charlie Weis might be in his office right now planning on how to take care of the Naval Academy and become bowl eligible this coming Saturday, but in the back of his mind he has to be thinking about the talent that he has coming in next year. Five of the Irish's 2009 verbal commitments were invited to play in the prestigious Army All-American Bowl in January.

The Irish's most recent commit, Shaquelle Evans (WR) will join Cierra Wood (RB) and Chris Watt (OG) on the West roster and Zeke Motta (OLB) and Tyler Stockton (DT) join the East squad. The U.S. Army All-American Bowl features 90 of the best high school football players in the nation.

Another Irish commitment, Zach Martin (OL) will represent the Irish in the ESPN Under Armour game (80 of the nations best).

The Army All-American Bowl will take place on January 3rd at 1pm and can be seen on NBC and the ESPN Under Armour game can be seen January 4th at 8pm on ESPN.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Irish blanked by B.C.

By Michael Rubin, Domer Sports Report

Notre Dame Football
Game Recap

It was a long trip home from Boston last night as the Irish suffered another loss to the hands of Boston College, 17-0. In a battle of the two most prestigious Catholic schools in the country, the Irish were unable to even put a point on the board in a game in which Irish quarterback Jimmy Clausen was uncharacteristically intercepted four times. The Irish threw four interceptions, fumbled a punt return and also had a punt blocked.

The Irish out gained the B.C. 292-246, but turnovers were the difference but miscues were the difference. Boston College took a three point first quarter lead after kicking a 27-yard field goal. Then, on a Jimmy Clausen interception, Paul Anderson returned it 76 yards for a touchdown to give B.C. a 10-0 lead going into the half. The Eagles put the finishing touches on Notre Dame with a nine-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Robinson from Chris Crane.

The Eagles were led on the ground by Montel Harris who rushed 23 times for 120 yards.

Next week Notre Dame will again look to become bowl eligible as they travel to Baltimore, Maryland to take on the 6-3 Navy Midshipmen.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Shaq bleeds Blue and Gold

By Michael Rubin, Domer Sports Report

Notre Dame Football
2009 Recruiting

Earlier today, during a press conference in which he was officially invited to participate in the Army All-American Game, wide receiving prospect Shaquelle Evans also made his college selection. Evans' choice came down to two schools, the Irish and in-state USC. The time came and........Evans donned an Irish baseball cap and committed to be a part of an already talented Irish receiving corps.

Evans has game changing speed (4.45 40 yard dash) and is one of the top ranked receivers in the 2009 class. Evans said the Notre Dame fans were a huge part of his decision. We all know the Irish have some of the most passionate fans of any team in the country and it is nice to know that recruits are noticing that as well. He also said that South Bend was a place where he felt he could accomplish all of his goals and he cannot wait to step foot on campus.

Evans is the second receiver for the Irish in the 2009 recruiting class, the other being Nyshier Oliver. Looks like the Irish could have one of the most talented group of receivers in the country next year.

Now lets go take care of BC!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Brey receives commitment from Big Man

By Michael Rubin, Domer Sports Report

Notre Dame Men's Basketball

Coach Mike Brey and the Irish received a commitment today from Thomas Knight. Knight, a 6'8 245lb power forward/center from Dixfield, Maine, chose Notre Dame over Rutgers, Northeastern, Maine and Davidson.

Knight is a very good scorer down on the blocks and also brings a lot of strength to his game. Last year, Knight averaged 17 points and eight rebounds as he led his high school team to the state semifinals.

He took his official visit to South Bend October 31st and came away very impressed. Once he arrived on campus for his visit, he connected immediately with the Irish players and Coach Brey.

Knight adds an added dimension to his game that not many men his size bring and that is his ability to hit the three.

Welcome to the Irish family Thomas, you will look good in a Notre Dame uni. Knight joins Joey Brooks (guard), Jack Cooley (power-forward/center) and Mike Broghammer (power forward) in Notre Dame's 2009 recruiting class.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Recruiting Update...

RB prospect Dalton Hilliard from Hawaii has given an oral commitment to UCLA this past week. Hilliard had offers on the table from Arizona, Utah, Washington, Stanford, Hawaii, Colorado, Nebraska and the Irish. Hilliard has said that UCLA has long been one of his favorites, even growing up as a kid. He recently went on an official visit to UCLA and said he felt extremely comfortable and just knew it was the school for him. It does not appear that Hilliard will see time as a running back for the Bruins due to the depth of young backs they already have. UCLA has said that they see him coming in to play corner or possibly even being a slot receiver. Irish fans wish Hilliard a very successful and long career, except for when they play the Bruins.

Irish Keys to Beating a Hated Foe this Saturday

Domer Sports Report

After a giveaway of a game a week ago Notre Dame goes on the road this week to take on the hated Boston College squad who has won the previous five contests against the Irish, dating back to 2000 when Notre Dame upended the Eagles while being led by the likes of and Matt Lovecchio and Bob Davie. Yeah, its been too long and the Irish are in need of a win in this series. With the obvious stated, what must Notre Dame do in order to walk out of Chestnut Hill victorious this Saturday night?

The fact of the matter is that the Irish, although very unimpressive in six of their last eight quarters of football, are playing a team they are very likely better than. They were the better team a week ago and squandered a two touchdown lead and are a better team this coming weekend against the 5-3 Boston College Eagles.

BC comes into Saturday losing their previous two, a 45-24 shellacking from North Carolina, before a 27-21 loss a week ago against Clemson. In those games BC has allowed nearly eight yards per pass attempt in both as well as right at three yards a carry. Against better offenses this defense has struggled this season, but after the second half a week ago, it is obvious this Irish offense is far from exceptional.

Chris Crane will be under center for Boston College and to say that he has struggled this year would be a major understatement. Crane has completed 56% of his passes for 5.6 yards/attempt while throwing eight touchdowns to twelve interceptions. Crane is a far cry from Matt Ryan, PS3's NCAA Football '09 cover boy and NFL first round draft pick from last April.

Crane's favorite targets include Brandon Robinson (27 Rec, 444 Yds, 2 TD's) and Rich Gunnell (26 Rec, 236 Yds, 1 TD). Like most teams Notre Dame has faced, the defensive secondary should be too strong of a match for these gentleman. What that means is that the game will once again come down to if Notre Dame can stop the running game or not.

In the three Notre Dame losses, the likes of Ringer, Draughn, and McCoy have run wild. It is of utter importance that Montel Harris (411 yds, 5.6 ypc, 4 td) and Josh Haden (273 yds, 4.3 ypc, 1 td) do not get into a groove and pace the Eagles offense on Saturday night.

The Eagles bring one of the better defenses to the game this Saturday, ranking 10th overall in fewest yards allowed per game and 27th in points per game given up with 19 being allowed per contest. The good news for Notre Dame is that the defense has not been as good as of late for BC as they have allowed 27, 45, and 23 points in their last three contests, respectively. Much of the reason for such a high ranking, statistically, is because of matchups against Kent State, Rhode Island, and UCF who combined for seven points in three games against BC. Outside of those three contests BC gives up an average of 29 points per game, much better looking for Notre Dame.

Defensively, the Eagles are led by BJ Raji who enters with four sacks, Mark Herzlich who ranks seventh in the ACC with 68 tackles and three interceptions, and Paul Anderson who has also picked off three passes.

Notre Dame needs to establish the run this week if they hope to win. They must establish it with themselves and stop Boston College from doing so. It is as simple as that for Notre Dame if they want to become bowl eligible this Saturday night.

One thing is very true and it is that BC sees this game as their Super Bowl to some degree. They dislike Notre Dame more than anything in life and like nothing more than ruining, or further frustrating, Irish seasons. Another thing that is true is that Notre Dame brings in a more talented team to this Saturday's game.

Notre Dame is winless against above .500 teams this year and in need of a win against one sooner than later. Boston College presents a great chance to win on the road and I feel that they will walk away with one, albeit by skin on their teeth.

Prediction Time:

Nick (6-2): Notre Dame 27 Boston College 26
Mark (7-1): Notre Dame 31 Boston College 24

Monday, November 3, 2008

Women's Basketball recruiting update

By Michael Rubin, Domer Sports Report

Notre Dame Women's Basketball
2009 Recruiting

The Irish received a visit this past weekend from the number three ranked prospect in the 2009 recruiting class, Skylar Diggins. Diggins is a 5'8 point guard from South Bend who also has offers from Penn State and Stanford, both of which she has taken an official visit to. Diggins is a very competitive point guard who was a Parade All-American last year and averaged 29.7 ppg as a junior. She is still undecided on where she will attend college, but says Notre Dame is definitely one of her favorites.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

2009 Recruiting Update: Part Five- Offensive Tackle

By Michael Rubin, Domer Sports Report

Notre Dame Football
2009 Recruiting

The Irish are looking to bolster their offensive tackle position as they prepare for life after Mike Turkovich. Turkovich is a three year starter who moved from guard to tackle this year and is one of the Irish's biggest surprises so far in 2008. The Irish already have one offensive tackle commitment for the 2009 season and are eyeing another.

Offensive Tackle

Zach Martin, 6'5 270, an offensive tackle from Indianapolis, Indiana committed to the Irish in the middle of July.

Martin attends Bishop Chatard HS and also held offers from Stanford, UCLA, Virginia, Illinois, Michigan, and Northwestern.

Martin, a Rivals 4-star athlete, said that he had a list of things he was looking for in a school and Notre Dame fit that. He also stated that he felt Notre Dame was the most comfortable place for him. Martin is a could be one of the most versatile offensive tackles in the 2009 class and could come in and make an immediate impact.

Here is his evaluation:

"Martin may be one of the most versatile linemen in the 2009 class. He is an outstanding offensive tackle and defensive lineman that has a great motor and being 6'5' 275, it's no surprise he is being highly recruited. Offensively, he comes off the ball low and hard playing with great leverage. Demonstrates great leg drive and locks hands into the defender's body; big meat hooks really clamp on. Could give a little more punch but this aggressively football player does a great job of sustaining his block. Alert and picks up inside stunts and blitzes like seasoned veteran. Very mobile for a big man; pulls with authority and athletic enough in the open field to lock on to linebackers and defensive backs. Has no trouble getting turned upfield and gives that little bit extra to get downfield block. Very solid at pass protection and anchors down with weight underneath him. Uses his hands very well and delivers a jarring blow on the pass rusher. On defense this huge athlete also gives great effort and is very physical. Wrong arms the trap and destroys the double team. Powerful at the point of attack and absolutely cannot get knocked off the line by one blocker. Extremely quick on line stunts and is a menacing pass rusher. Uses hands and to separate from the blocker then disengages to get to the football. Takes good pursuit angles and demonstrates excellent lateral movement. It's amazing how this big guy can go both ways and never tire. Martin is truly a workhouse that is equally effective both sides of the football. We love his motor on defense, but in the long run his best fit may be on offense as a tackle."

The Irish are also recruiting four-star offensive tackle Xavier Nixon.

Nixon, 6'6 265, has offers on the table from Clemson, Florida, LSU, Miami, North Carolina, N.C. State, South Carolina and WVU.

Nixon, from Fayetteville, North Carolina is the number three ranked offensive tackle in the 2009 recruiting class and has been playing defensive end as well as tackle on his Jack Britt High School football team.

Nixon has had an eventful past couple of weeks, visiting the University of Florida, and being named to the North Carolina-South Carolina Shrine Bowl. He is pretty up in the air about where he will attend next year, but we will keep our ears open.

Here is's evaluation on Nixon:

"Nixon has the athletic skills to be one of the better offensive linemen in the class of 2009. With a tall frame, he has long arms and is light on his feet of a tackle pushing 300 pounds. His mobility isn't an issue. Pulls a lot and gets out of his stance quickly. Loses very little speed when turning upfield, especially for a big man. Sometimes misses in space. Needs to more consistently come under control and avoid overrunning the defender. Shows super effort getting across the field from the back side. He's still learning to use his legs and upper body as one weapon. He has a tendency to over-stride and lose some power when delivering a blow. He's aggressive at the point of attack and can come out low with a lot of force and punch, but he needs to do it more consistently. He's impressive on combination blocks. SHows good hip roll and leg drive once he engages the defender. Executes the down block with perfection. Has no trouble getting his head across and in front of a defensive lineman because of his quickness off the ball. Has good football sense and rarely takes plays off. has quick feet in pass protection, but he sometimes gets his weight too far forward. Needs to keep his hands inside consistently delivering the first punch to a pass rusher's chest; tends to go too high or miss with his initial blow. Nixon is undoubtedly athletic enough to be a very good blocker at the next level, but more body control and work in the weight room could transform him into a complete tackle."

It appears the Irish have lost out on tight end prospect Gabe Ikard. Ikard has decided to attend the hometown University of Oklahoma. Ikard said that he has been to OU over 500 times and that the coaching staff has said that they see him fitting in very well. Ikard did not want to sit on the bench and with the depth at tight end at Notre Dame, it would appear that he would have had a tough time seeing the field next year.

Irish Lose Marathon Game to Pitt

By Michael Rubin, Domer Sports Report

Notre Dame Football
Game Recap

Looking to become bowl eligible for the first time since 2006 when they were in the Fiesta Bowl, the Irish fought hard for four quarters and four overtime periods only to fall short 36-33. Notre Dame had the first possession in the fourth overtime only to have Brandon Walker miss a 37 yard field goal. On the Panther's next possession, they drove down to the Notre Dame six yard line and Conor Lee hit a 22 yard field goal to give the Panthers the win.

The Irish took at 17-3 lead into the half behind a Brandon Walker field goal (39 yards) and two Michael Floyd touchdown receptions (18 and 4 yards respectively).

The Panthers, led by LeSean McCoy (32 carries for 169 yards and one touchdown), outscored the Irish 21-7 in the second half to take the game into overtime.

The Irish had a 24-17 lead with 2:22 left in the fourth quarter when Pitt quarterback Pat Bostick found Jonathan Baldwin in the end zone for a 10 yard touchdown on fourth and six. Both teams exchanged field goals through the first three overtime periods before the Panthers sealed the deal with Lee's 22 yarder in the fourth overtime.

Clausen led the Irish, going 23-44 for 271 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. Michael Floyd led all Irish receivers with 10 catches for 100 yards and two touchdowns and Golden Tate caught six passes for 111 yards and one td.

The Irish try to go for their sixth win next week when they take on Boston College (5-3).