Sean O'Shea by Sean O'Shea
Coach Brian Kelly's job now on the line as Notre Dame lose sensationally to Michigan
Posted on Sunday, September 11, 2011 at 12:52 AM
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Michigan pulled of a sensational last second victory 35-31 against Notre Dame before 114,000 fans last night in The Big House.
This was be Brian Kelly’s worst loss since being head coach of Notre Dame, especially as the boo birds were out in force after last week’s debacle against South Florida.
It asks fundamental questions about whether he is able to step up from Cincinnati to the most visible job in college football.
The jury is still out after this loss.
The Irish could have won by twenty points, so dominant were they in ‘The Big House’ with 114,000 Michigan fans in attendance.
Yet the fourth quarter became another heart attack that ended with an incredible Irish loss.
Ahead 24-7 the Irish were unable to out away their opponent despite outplaying them for the vast majority of the game.
It leaves Kelly with a major loss and a season already in tatters after just two games. A decent season and a major bowl game are pipe dreams now.
Cruising 24-7 they conceded an unlucky touchdown at the start of the fourth quarter but nonetheless looked certain to hang on for the victory especially when Tommy Rees put them ahead with a touchdown with 30 seconds left.
But once again, as with South Florida, Notre Dame could not finish out the game and let it slip incredibly in the dying seconds.
There will be be major questions about Kelly’s team preparation after this loss.
Nine turnovers in just two weeks has led to a deep sense that this team lacks the discipline that a truly top class coach could instill.
Instead it is another heartbreaking loss and a wonder how else this side can lose games after being so dominant.
Kelly is playing for more than his season now, he is playing for his job. Entering his second year at the helm his team has got a case of snakebite as bad as anything they experienced last year.
This will be very hard to come back from.