Notre Dame vs. Pitt: Live Game Grades and Analysis for the Irish

Chris StephensCorrespondent IINovember 9, 2013

SOUTH BEND, IN - NOVEMBER 02: T.J. Jones #7 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish breaks away from Chris Ferguson #23 of the Navy Midshipmen at Notre Dame Stadium on November 2, 2013 in South Bend, Indiana. Notre Dame defeated Navy 38-34. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish dropped their third game of the year, losing to the Pittsburgh Panthers.

Final: Pittsburgh 28, Notre Dame 21

For full stats, go to

Notre Dame Fighting Irish Game Grades
Position Unit1st-Half GradeFinal Grade
Pass OffenseC-D-
Rush OffenseBC-
Pass DefenseB-C-
Rush DefenseB+B+
Special TeamsCC
vs. Pittsburgh

Final Analysis for Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Pass Offense: It's the same story for Notre Dame. Quarterback Tommy Rees threw two critical interceptions. One in the end zone with the game tied at 21-21, while the second came one drive later that allowed Pittsburgh to get the go-ahead touchdown.

Rush Offense: Notre Dame had 133 yards on the ground, but only five yards came in the second half. The Irish abandoned the running game and it ended up costing them a chance to win the game.

Pass Defense: Tom Savage had 243 yards through the air and two touchdowns. The Irish allowed completions to eight different receivers and really had no idea where the ball was going all night.

Rush Defense: The Irish controlled the line of scrimmage most of the night as they only allowed 113 yards on 41 rushes. However, the loss of Stephon Tuitt hurt the Irish up front.

Special Teams: Kyle Brindza averaged 46.2 yards per punt and held Pittsburgh to -3 yards per punt return. Still, special teams had nothing to do with the final outcome.

Coaching: Notre Dame had no answer for Pittsburgh in the second half. The coaches didn't have the Irish prepared to win this game.

PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 09:  K'Waun Williams #2 of the Pittsburgh Panthers breaks up a pass to William Fuller #15 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish during the game on November 9, 2013 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller
Justin K. Aller/Getty Images


First-Half Analysis for Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Pass Offense: Tommy Rees wasn't very accurate in the first half, completing five of 14 passes for 115 yards. The big play came on a 34-yard completion to Ben Koyack, putting the Irish inside the 1-yard line. Three plays later, they scored.

Rush Offense: The Irish have 128 yards on 18 carries, with George Atkinson III going for 57 yards on five carries. TJ Jones ran the ball three times for 41 yards, including a one-yard touchdown run. 

Pass Defense: Tom Savage completed 12 passes for 102 yards, with no pass going for more than 14 yards. Notre Dame allowed one long drive of 71 yards, but outside of that, allowed 94 yards the rest of the half.

Rush Defense: Notre Dame held Pittsburgh to 63 yards on 18 carries. The Panthers aren't getting anything going on the ground. However, Stephon Tuitt was ejected from the game, so that hurts the Irish moving forward.

Special Teams: Special teams has played no real role in this game. Kyle Brindza missed a 55-yard field goal but averaged 47.7 yards per punt. 

Coaching: For a team that is vying for a spot in a BCS bowl game, the Irish are largely playing uninspired football. That falls on the coaches.