Spring is in the air: LIVE from the Blue-Gold Game

Notre Dame will bring it’s 2009 spring season to an end this afternoon with the 80th annual Blue-Gold spring scrimmage. Today’s game will pit the offense (Blue) against the defense (Gold). Follow along here as Sam Werner (SW) and Michael Bryan (MB) provide live updates from the Notre Dame press box.

Final Update- Score: Blue (Offense) 68, Gold (Defense) 33. Offensive  MVP – Armando Allen, Defensive MVP Robert Blanton

2:53 p.m. (MB)- Crist at QB, Hughes pounding the ball up the middle. Hughes runs three straight times for a first down to start the series, with gains of 7, nothing on a nice tackle by early enrollee Zeke Motta, and 6. Filer almost picks off a pass for Goodman on first down.

We’ll be heading down to the field for the final minutes of the game. A quick prediction: the Blue will win. Check out und.com for the last few minutes and check back here for the final score and stats.

2:51 p.m. (SW) – Clausen returns under center, but the offense can’t generate much success. After a nine-yard pass to Duval Kamara, Clausen can’t hook up with Michael Floyd on a long pass, and Hughes is stuffed at the line of scrimmage on third-and-one. Maust punts to Floyd to finish off the drive with the score Blue 61, Gold 32.

2:46 p.m. (MB) – Montana back in at quarterback, but his only job on this series appears to be handing off to Jonas Gray. The rising sophomore starts the drive with two straight 12 yard runs up the middle. Gray runs three more in a row, picking up gains of 2, 5, and 2 yards, leaving a 4th and 1. Walker comes and in confidently nails a 48-yard field goal, getting the biggest cheers of the second half.

2:40 p.m. (SW) – Dayne Crist comes back in for the second drive of the half, along with Jonas Gray. Gray busted runs up the middle of four, nine, and 12 yards. Crist almost had Deion Walker on a long pass play, but the two weren’t able to hook up. The drive stalled after Gray was stuffed for a loss of two by David Posluszny, followed by a sack by the defense and an incomplete pass by Crist. Robby Parris was set to return the punt, but the ball was downed. around the 50. With 16:30 left in the second half, the score is 52-30, Blue team. I’ll admit, I have no idea what the score means.

2:37 p.m. (MB) – Some stats from the first half: 27 rushes for 108 yards for the offense – Allen seven times for 47 yards, Hughes 10 attempt, 59 yards and a TD. Clausen is 5 of 10 for 42 yards, one pick. Rudolph is the leading receiver with four catches and 27 yards. Michael Garcia leads the defense with 4 tackles, and Ethan Johnson has three tackles with a sack and a tackle for a loss.

2:35 p.m. (MB) – We’re back underway and the first team offense and defense take the field to start the half. Allen gets stuffed on first down, and Clausen then throws too far ahead of Rudolph. On 3rd and 12 Clausen evades pressure and scrambles for 18 yards and slides for a first down. Not sure if Jimmy makes it out of that if guys are diving at him. A screen to Allen gets five yards on first down, and then Armando loses one on a run. On 3rd and 6 Allen again runs to the outside but is a yard short of a first down. Hughes comes and in picks up the first down with a gain of two.

We have a flea-flicker attempt from Clausen to Floyd, but the ball falls just outside Floyd’s reach in the end zone. Ethan Johnson stuffs Armando Allen in the backfield for a loss of four, but on 3rd and 14 Clausen completes to Floyd, who just gets the first down. Allen then gets loose on the outside, running for 26 yards before getting pushed out at the 2 yard line. Hughes punches in it and Walker converts the extra point, and its 48-26 Blue.

2:15 p.m. (SW) – Dayne Crist is back in at quarterback, and looks like he may have a slight case of the jitters. On first down, Crist overthrew junior Robby Parris. On second, he threw well wide of freshman John Goodman. Crist overthrew Goodman again on the third down, though freshman Dan McCarthy was providing excellent coverage on the play. On the final drive of the half, Hughes provided three runs for a total of 22 yards, and the score at halftime is Blue 33, Gold 26.

2:08 p.m. (MB) – Clausen and the first team offense back again, but without much success. Ian Williams sacks Clausen on first down with pressure also from Brian Smith. On 2nd and 18 Duval Kamara finds a hole in the secondary, but a holding penalty negates the gain. Now backed up to 2nd and 28, Clausen gets some yards back on a nice out to Tate for 14 yards. On third down it’s a screen to Rudolph, who finds a little room but is tackled eight yards short of the marker. Maust booms a 49 yard punt, this time returned by Allen, who makes a few nifty moves and then turns on the jets for a 29 yard return to the Gold 47.

2:04 p.m. (SW) It’s a little odd to hear the PA announcer say “Montana in at quarterback for the Irish,” but Nate Montana has just gotten his first minutes of playing time. The freshman walk-on led the Irish offense to another touchdown drive, with most of the work being done by freshman running back Jonas Gray, who ripped off a couple of medium-length runs. It was Montana who supplied the big plays, though, as he hit freshman receiver Deion Walker crossing over the middle for 17 yards and sophomore tight end Mike Ragone on a seam route for 34 yards. Gray finished off the drive with a seven-yard touchdown run, but Brandon Walker’s extra point doinked off the left upright. So after five drives, with about three minutes left in the first, it’s 32-18 Blue team.

1:56 p.m. (MB) – Clausen comes back in for drive #4 with 14:18 left in the first half. On first down Clausen completes to Rudolph for 12 yards and a first down. We then get our first deep pass from Clausen, incomplete to Michael Floyd, who didn’t get off the line cleanly against Blanton. Allen gets stuffed on second down, and on 3rd and 11 Clausen’s pass is too high for Rudolph. Maust punts to Tate, who returns it seven yards to the 20. Defense gets two points for the stop, and the score is 20-17, Blue.

1:50 p.m. (SW) The offense gets some points back on their third drive, led primarily by the running game. With freshman Dayne Crist in a quarterback, sophomore Robert Hughes carried the load early in the drive, with runs of 12, 4, and 11 yards. Hughes also caught a pass from Crist for a first down. Allen came back to in spell Hughes and made a couple of nice cuts for runs of nine and five yards. The drive appeared to stall late, after a botched snap and a blown-up reverse, but Hughes powered in a nine yard touchdown run to finish off the drive. With about 13 minutes left in the first half, it’s 18-15 offense.

1:37 p.m. (MB) – The second drive turns into a big win for the defense. Hughes is stuffed for two yards on the first down, and Clausen hits  Rudolph for a four yard gain. Morrice Richardson again brought pressure and was upset he didn’t get credit for touching Clausen down for a sack.

On third and four Clausen is picked by Robert Blanton and returned all the way back for a TD and 10 points for the Gold team. The 48-yard return gets the crowd up here and is followed by a duck, duck, goose celebration featuring the entire defense. Walker converts the extra point (which counts for the defense). Gold 15, Blue 4.

1:37 p.m. (SW) – Lots of Armando Allen on the first drive for the offense. The junior-to-be had runs of four, nine, seven, and 13 yards. Unfortunately for the Blue squad, though, the drive was broken up by an Ethan Jonhson sack, a throw-away by Clausen forced by Morrice Richardson, and an incomplete pass intended for Rudolph. After one drive, it’s 4-4.

1:02 p.m. (SW) – The rest of the players have come out on to the field. Not playing for the Gold team: DE Kapron Lewis-Moore, special teams stud Mike Anello, LBs Kerry Neal and Anthony McDonald, and CB E.J. Banks.

12:56 p.m. (SW) – The players are starting to filter on the field. Most of the Blue squad has come out. Receivers George West and Barry Gallup, Jr., as well as running back James Aldridge, are the only players who have come out not dressed to play.

12:48 p.m. (SW) – Good afternoon everyone. Kickoff is still over 40 minutes away, but Notre Dame Stadiumis already filling up quickly. Seating is apparently restricted to the lower bowl, and the both sidelines are just about full. A good chunk of the seats behind the north endzone have been removed for construction.


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