Preps Talk

Notre Dame's two-quarterback dynamic here to stay


Notre Dame's two-quarterback dynamic here to stay

Tommy Rees has been deployed twice as Everett Golson's safety net twice this year, and both times, he's guided Notre Dame to a victory. But make no mistake: Rees isn't taking the No. 1 job from Golson any time soon.

Golson, however, has a short leash.

"We're 40, so I'd say that having Tommy in there the two times that he did play, if you measure it from that standpoint, it's worked out okay," coach Brian Kelly said Sunday. "You know, I've made this pretty clear every time that this has been brought up: You want to go with one quarterback, but we have a freshman quarterback who's experiencing being a young quarterback. (If) I can prop him up with a veteran to win a football game because we're in this to win it, then we'll do that.

"Characterize it any way you want, that it's two quarterbacks. I look at it as supporting Everett with Tommy, and if we need to do that, we'll continue to go that way because it's been pretty successful."

There are plenty of two-quarterback systems scattering the college football landscape, but few -- if any -- have the dynamic seen at Notre Dame. It's clear Kelly and his coaching staff are not only looking to win in 2012, but they're looking to develop a guy who can lead them to wins in 2013 and beyond.

But as Notre Dame's success continues to grow -- the Irish are ranked No. 10 in the AP top 25 poll heading into its bye week -- can Kelly keep the same strategy and continue to win?

Right now, the answer is yes. But Notre Dame was able to overcome two bad decisions made by Golson during Saturday's 13-6 win over Michigan. A lot of that fell on the shoulders of the defense, which backed Michigan up after the first pick and forced a missed field goal.

The second interception was far more egregious, though, as came in Notre Dame's end zone.

"It was a careless mistake, one that was uncharacteristic of how he had practiced and how he performed," Kelly said. "I felt like I needed to make a decision for the best interest of our team in winning that game, and it was at that fifth series."

But what if Golson makes a careless or jittery mistake in a situation that proves to be more costly? What if the defense or Rees can't bail the team out after a mistake made by a freshman quarterback?

That's a risk, sure. But it's a risk every team takes. Denard Robinson threw four interceptions yesterday, and Michigan never recovered. And in the world of future Notre Dame opponents, a Landry Jones interception halted Oklahoma's momentum in a 24-19 loss to Kansas State in Norman on Saturday.

Both those guys are seasoned quarterbacks with a ton of snaps under their belt. And it's worth noting Golson only turned the ball over twice in three games heading into the Michigan game.

Kelly won't use Rees if Golson is making right decisions and confident throws. Rees is a luxury plenty of teams don't have -- an experienced backup who can enter whenever an inexperienced starter looks overwhelmed.

So far, that mix has worked. Notre Dame is 4-0, and as long as they avoid a major upset, a 1-2 record against the trio of Stanford, Oklahoma and USC could lead the team to a BCS bid.

All indications are that Golson will be the starter if Notre Dame can make that run. But Kelly has made it just as clear that Rees will be a big part of whatever the Irish end up doing in 2012 as well.

High School Lites Football Semifinals Roundup

High School Lites Football Semifinals Roundup

High School Lites has plenty of great IHSA football playoff action from the semifinals on Saturday as NBC Sports Chicago has highlights of many of the area's top matchups. 

Be sure to also follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps for all of the latest IHSA football scores and highlights. 

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This Week's Scores

Class 8A

Loyola Academy 17, Edwardsville 10

Lincoln-Way East 24, Maine South 14

Class 7A

Lake Zurich 14, Mount Carmel 7

Batavia 23, Benet Academy 13

Class 6A

Prairie Ridge 42, Hoffman Estates 21

Nazareth Academy 24, Providence Catholic 7

Class 5A

Phillips 27, Sterling 14

Dunlap 21, Washington 0

Class 4A

Morris 43, Raby 8

Rochester 31, Highland 14

Class 3A

IC Catholic 7, Byron 0

Pleasant Plains 41, Anna-Jonesboro 2

Class 2A

Gibson City 14, Newman Central Catholic 8

Maroa-Forsyth 25, Shelbyville 14

Class 1A

Tuscola 21, Athens 14

Lena-Winslow 12, Forreston 8


NBCSPreps Boys Basketball Preseason Power Rankings

NBCSPreps Boys Basketball Preseason Power Rankings

The 2017-18 IHSA boys basketball season has a lot of talented teams in the Chicagoland area. See who made the preseason top 25, headlined by five Public League powerhouses.

No. 1 Morgan Park

No. 2 Whitney Young

No. 3 Simeon

No. 4 Orr

No. 5 Curie

No. 6 Fenwick

No. 7 Bolingbrook

No. 8 Waukegan

No. 9 Niles North

No. 10 Uplift

No. 11 Romeoville

No. 12 Hinsdale South

No. 13 West Aurora

No. 14 Larkin

No. 15 St. Rita

No. 16 OPRF

No. 17 St. Charles East

No. 18 Kenwood

No. 19 Willowbrook

No. 20 Bloom

No. 21 Evanston

No. 22 Lake Zurich

No. 23 Proviso East

No. 24 Lincoln-Way East

No. 25 Libertyville