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April 18, 2024

  • Jeanette Winterson for “gAyPRIL”
    “gAyPRIL” (Gay-April) continues on Falcon Radio, sharing a playlist curated by the Queer Trans Student Union, sharing songs celebrating the LGBTQ+ experience. In similar vein, you will enjoy Jeanette Winterson’s books if you find yourself interested in LGBTQ+ voices and nonlinear narratives. As “dead week” is upon us, students, we can utilize resources such as Falcon […]
  • Poetics of April
    As we enter into the poetics of April, also known as national poetry month, here are four voices from well to lesser known. The Tradition – Jericho Brown Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Brown visited the last American Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP 2024) conference, and I loved his speech and humor. Besides […]
Spring Housing Guide

Notre Dame gets a huge game from unlikely hero

Notre Dame used an unlikely hero to earn another surprising victory over Michigan.

Freshman Darius Walker had two fourth-quarter touchdowns and the Fighting Irish renewed hope for a turnaround season by upsetting the eighth-ranked Wolverines 28-20 on Saturday.

Walker, who did not play in Notre Dame’s opening game, ran for 115 yards on 31 carries — the first Irish freshman to rush for more than 100 yards since Julius Jones had 146 yards against Navy in 1999.

Notre Dame (1-1) earned its first win over a top-10 team since beating fifth-ranked Michigan 25-23 two years ago. Since that game, the Irish were 0-4 against top-10 teams, losing by a combined 164-27 — including the 38-0 loss to Michigan last season.

The Wolverines (1-1) lost their opening road game for a fifth straight year.

The victory was reminiscent of how the Irish played two seasons ago in getting off to an 8-0 start. The defense kept them in the game, the defense and special teams set up touchdowns and the offense came up with big plays when it had to.

The biggest surprise, though, was the play of Walker — especially in the fourth quarter. Walker, who is from Lawrenceville, Ga., ran for 61 yards on 14 carries as Notre Dame took control.

It was especially impressive considering the Irish were held to 11 yards rushing a week earlier in a listless loss to Brigham Young — their worst total in 39 years.

The Irish were trailing 12-7 late in the third quarter when Wolverines freshman Chad Henne threw high to Braylon Edwards. The ball bounced high off Edwards’ hands and cornerback Dwight Ellick intercepted it at the Michigan 29. Brady Quinn completed a pair of passes to Maurice Stovall for 19 yards, the second pass to the 6-yard line. Walker ran around right end untouched for the TD to give the Irish a 14-12 lead.

On Michigan’s next possession, the Wolverines went three-and-out. On the punt, Jerome Collins broke up the middle and Chase Anastasio came in around the right end and they combined to block the punt. Corey Mays recovered the ball on the Michigan 5. Walker scored on the next play, this time going untouched around left end.

The Irish pulled away in the fourth quarter when Rashon Powers-Neal caught a play-action pass from Quinn for an 8-yard touchdown to make it 28-12.

The Wolverines closed to 28-20 with 2:27 left on a 25-yard TD pass from Henne to Steve Breaston. Henne and Breaston then connected for a two-point play. But Notre Dame clinched the win when Stovall recovered the onside kick.

The game came as a relief to Irish fans, who had seen the Irish lose twice to USC by 31 points over the past two seasons and once to Florida State by 37. Then there was the 38-point loss to Michigan, the most lopsided game of the series which the Irish used as motivation all offseason.

Notre Dame students ran out on the field to celebrate the win, turning the field into a sea of green with their green T-shirts.

Quinn was 10-of-20 passing for 178 yards with three interceptions and a fumble. Stovall had five catches for 82 yards. Henne, making just his second start, was 25-of-40 passing for 240 yards. Edwards had 12 catches for 129 yards.

Notre Dame’s last three wins over Top 10 teams have all been against Michigan.

Notre Dame ended a scoreless streak of six quarters against the Wolverines when Quinn threw a 46-yard touchdown pass to Matt Shelton. Shelton leaped up over Michigan cornerback Markus Curry, caught the underthrown ball and fell backward into the end zone.

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