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The Blue-Gold Game: Highlighting the Future, But Not Determining the Present

Written by Liam Farrell|Senior Staff Writer|Twitter/X: @LiamFarrell_IT

Via The Irish Tribune


Nothing beats a Saturday in Notre Dame Stadium, as the yearly tradition of the Fighting Irish's Blue-Gold game gives light to the future of the program, while feeding fans with enough football to last them through the spring. However, even as it may be beyond exciting to see players, especially underclassmen, get an opportunity to showcase their development to the Notre Dame fanbase; the structure of the Blue-Gold game offers little opportunity to get the true feel of the team.

This year especially, it will be difficult to understand the nature of the team because of the amount of marquee names not participating. Notable players that will not be playing include Riley Leonard, Benjamin Morrison, Jadarian Price, Jayden Thomas, Cam Williams, and Jayden Harrison.





Even as the Notre Dame offense transitions into the Mike Denbrock era, I would anticipate a low-scoring performance, especially since the Irish will not show too many schemes, and, at the end of the day, Notre Dame boasts one of the top defenses in America.


In last week's "Jersey scrimmage" in Notre Dame Stadium, Al Golden's defense stole the show. The defense racked up three total interceptions, including two pick-sixes by Xavier Watts and Jaden Mickey. The defensive line also bullied the offensive line in the trenches, as guys were coming off the edge unmarked, and the defensive pass rush was too much for the offensive to fend off.


As it pertains to the passing game tomorrow, the Irish will be without four scholarship wide receivers, including their projected top option, Thomas, and the high-upside freshman, Williams.


Transfer Kris Mitchell and freshman Micah Gilbert are the two wide receivers to watch out for amid the injuries. Mitchell will most likely be matched up against Christian Gray, who is fighting for a starting cornerback position against Jaden Mickey who, coincidentally, will likely be guarding Gilbert. These two one-on-one battles will be the sole matchups to look out for as the Notre Dame quarterbacks will be having their own mini competition.


Last year, the main narrative going into the spring game was the impact that Sam Hartman will have on the Notre Dame team. Evidently, Hartman made the spring game worthwhile as he silenced all of Marcus Freeman's claims of an "open quarterback battle" as he completely outshined opposing quarterback, Tyler Buchner. A couple weeks later, Buchner entered his name in the transfer portal, and Hartman cemented himself as the starter for the 2023 Irish.


In this year's game, the battle between Angeli, Minchey, and Carr to be Leonard's backup will be intriguing. Carr will be playing for both teams, while Angeli will get the start for the Blue team and Minchey will start for the Gold team.


While these may be relevant storylines in the spring, many of these questions won't be answered until summer camp. However, the ongoing competition between position groups sparks nothing but growth for every player. The slogan from the first spring practice was "iron sharpens iron," and it should be interesting to see how far the Fighting Irish have progressed throughout their spring.




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