After shut name, No. eight Irish come dwelling to face Toledo | Sportsxchange

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No. 8 Notre Dame is looking for a cleaner performance when Toledo in South Bend, Ind.

The Fighting Irish (1-0) had a turbulent win in their opening game against Florida State on Sunday evening. Notre Dame gambled away an 18-point lead in the fourth quarter but emerged with a 41-38 win in extra time.

Irish fighting coach Brian Kelly said a movie review of the game showed plenty of room for improvement.

“If you’re 38:20 on the road and give up that lead, a lot of teams won’t get away with a win,” said Kelly. “Our boys persevered. We came up with the big stop when we needed it defensively. They just showed their courage and courage.

“As I said (Sunday), I really like this group. We have a lot to do, a lot of work to clean up.”

The next opportunity is against Toledo (1-0), which brought in a dominant 49-10 win over Norfolk State on Saturday. The Rockets shone on defense and special teams and scored two touchdowns on blocked punts.

This will be the first meeting between the programs.

Toledo is 9-17 against the top 25 teams in history. The Rockets’ last win over a ranked opponent was in the 2015 Boca Raton Bowl when they knocked down Temple # 24.

“We look forward to playing against a great football team and doing our best,” said Toledo coach Jason Candle.

Notre Dame quarterback Jack Coan will be looking to build on his impressive debut for the program. The graduate transfer completed 26 of 35 passes for 366 yards, four touchdowns and one interception against the Seminoles.

“(Coan) pushed the ball far over the field,” said Kelly. “I thought we were damn well protected. (But) we will (have to) let the ball run a little better.”

Notre Dame only scored 65 yards on 35 attempts. The team’s offensive line includes several newcomers, and Blake Fisher left the competition last week with a knee injury.

Star running back Kyren Williams struggled as did his teammates trying to carry the ball. Williams, a preseason All-American, had 18 carries for 42 yards as part of an overwhelming performance.

Toledo relied on two quarterbacks for its inaugural win. Carter Bradley completed 8 of 12 passes for 183 yards and a touchdown, and teammate Dequan Finn completed 4 of 5 passes for 38 yards. Finn also had a 24 yard rushing TD.

Bryant Koback added 52 yards and two ground touchdowns for Toledo.

Notre Dame couldn’t afford to overlook its Mid-American Conference opponent, Kelly said.

“We’re playing a really good team in Toledo,” said Kelly. “After seeing your film, this is probably the best MAC team we’ve brought to the stadium since I’ve been here. So we have to be prepared and have a short week.”

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