College Football Notebook
Published 12:00 am Friday, September 11, 2009
The college notebook …
ANN ARBOR, Mich. ó The luster has been restored. Notre Dame and Michigan are back.
At least, it looked that way when the Fighting Irish shut out Nevada and the Wolverines routed Western Michigan in their openers last week.
“It gives it a little more excitement, a little bigger stage, especially the way Notre Dame played Saturday and the way we played,” Michigan guard Steve Schilling said. “It’s going to be fun to see what we can do when we play each other.”
No one could’ve envisioned the storied programs and their fans getting excited about wins over teams from the WAC and the MAC. But that’s what has happened because Charlie Weis lost a school-record nine games at Notre Dame in 2007 and Rich Rodriguez’s debut season at Michigan last year was marred by a school-record nine setbacks.
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. ó Greg Paulus broke his share of fullcourt presses and halfcourt traps when he played basketball at Duke.
He never encountered a pressure defense like the one he’ll face today in Happy Valley.
Sidestepping No. 7 Penn State’s athletic defenders before 100,000-plus fans at Beaver Stadium will be the most daunting football challenge yet for the former point guard-turned Orange quarterback.
Paulus seems up for the task. He didn’t seem to notice the boos and taunts as a Blue Devil playing at hostile road venues such as North Carolina and Maryland.
“That type of environment helps kind of settle you down a little bit. It’s about maintaining what’s in the game plan,” Paulus said. “It’s about keeping the crowd out of it, making sure you and the guys are thinking about what you need to do.”
ATLANTA ó Georgia Tech might have been glancing ahead just a bit after building a 24-point lead on Clemson.
The No. 15 Yellow Jackets earned a pass for their mental lapse by rallying to beat the Tigers 30-27. But Georgia Tech can’t afford another Jekyll-and-Hyde performance when it travels to south Florida next week for a second straight prime-time appearance, this one against 20th-ranked Miami.
Georgia Tech (2-0, 1-0 ACC) raced to a 24-0 lead on the Tigers in the second quarter.
MANHATTAN, Kan. ó Bill Snyder agreed to a five-year contract with Kansas State on Friday, giving the 69-year-old coach the opportunity to pull off another reclamation project after the program he built unraveled under Ron Prince.