Brian Kelly says Saturday night's five turnovers like 'leaving runners in scoring position'

Mike Petraglia
November 21, 2015 - 10:24 pm
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Maybe it was his homecoming to Boston or maybe it was the fact that he just felt relieved that his team didn't spit the bit on a golden opportunity at a place at the four-seat national championship table. Whatever the case, following a 19-16 nailbiting win over the 3-8 Boston College Eagles at Fenway Park, Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly found a very fitting metaphor for surviving five turnovers and three in the red zone on the way to a 10th win of the season. "Well, it's like anything else. I've been trying to prepare for this moment," Kelly said. "It's like leaving runners in scoring position (laughter). Pretty good?" After making the baseball reference he had been planning, he admitted that there's no planning - or excuse - for not converting points when you get the chance against a team like BC. "You can't go down there and not come away with points, especially -- that's a really good defense, and for us to come up empty every single time, you know, we saw that almost sort of against Temple, too," Kelly said. "You've got to score points when you're down there. We're moving the ball fairly effectively most of the night, and just to keep stubbing our toe down there becomes concerning, obviously, and it made it a lot closer in my perspective. "I thought Boston College did a great job of ripping it loose. Great job on CJ Prosise. They ripped that one loose. And I really couldn't tell on Josh Adams's fumble. It looked like one he should have secured. That was the second one." Kelly was really concerned when Boston College corner Justin Simmons picked off DeShone Kizer at the Boston College 3 when the Irish were trying to put some distance between themselves and the Eagles in the third quarter. "The interception was careless," Kelly said. "I mean, we tried to force on 1st down, you know, a little boot pass into a corner that's sinking in the back of the end zone. That's crazy; throw that thing away. It's 2nd and 10. And then the fourth one, they were in zone, we threw a little screen pass, ill-advised, you know, again. Worst thing down there, let's kick the football. Learned a lot from it, and I think we'll be better because of it." The ability to just survive a team that was on a six-game losing skid coming in will do the Golden Domers no favors in the eyes of the selection committee for the final four in the national championship bracket. "The committee is out of my hands," Kelly said. "It's out of our players' hands. All we want to do is put ourselves in a position to be considered. We feel like we need to win another game to still be considered. We're one of the top four teams after last week. We'll see where we stand this week. We've just got to keep winning games. We've got another game against a nationally-ranked team which will give us an opportunity. "Our guys know what has been in front of them when they lost to Clemson early in the year. You've got to win all your games. Got one more, got to win it." Notre Dame plays at Stanford next Saturday, their final regular season game.