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Official: Marcus Freeman Named Next Irish Head Coach


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I like Freeman as the head coach. He exerts energy and is a top-notch recruiter. Further, it impresses me that key figures like Balis, Rees, Taylor and Elston are choosing to stay with Freeman. Respected and desired coaches, they add stability to the program. The choice of Freeman and the retention of key staff leaves me confident recruits won’t be abandoning their commitments.

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Amazing hire and the right hire. Soon to be, current and former players were all campaigning for Freeman in a big way. If that doesn't show you how well regarded/respected the man is I don't know what to tell you. Assistant coaches/coordinators HIRED by Brian Kelly opted to stay in South Bend with Freeman versus a big pay day in Baton Rogue, what does that tell you? Taylor, Mickens, Elston, Rees, Balis, O'Leary, McNulty are all in for sure. I believe the only question marks are Quinn and Alexander at this juncture. Any other hire and this 2022 class would have fell apart and part of the 2023 class. Did you see the exchange between Freeman and Drue Tranquil that Drue shared recently? Dude is a class act and to me that shows his people skills are off the charts. Young, eager and wants to make his mark. Even though he's an OSU alum, I don't feel like he bleeds scarlet and silver like Fickell does. Stoked.

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1 hour ago, coltssb said:

Interesting note. Say Freeman pest work out. The one thing that you know you’ll still have if he doesn’t is the recruiting classes. So you miss out on two three years but the cupboard will still be very full. That’s the one takeaway I get by this hire. 
It’s not like you’re taking a chance on a coach and it doesn’t work out and not only do you not have the recruiting classes but now you have a bunch of losses and the program has taken a big hit. 

As I've noted, I'm now all-in on Freeman and his staff.

But...

Recruits won't keep coming forever if the team goes 7-6, 8-5, 8-5.  By the end of that, recruits will be going elsewhere.  But ND would hold on to that coach for one or two more years, judging by past history.   However, this would be the case with any coaching hire, whether Fickell or Freeman or someone else.

I'm really looking forward to the next 12 months.

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I like this because after 12 years of investing in T bills we’re now doing some high stakes gambling, with a hard working, likable guy. If it doesn’t work out, I believe our talent will be upgraded for the next guy. I think Fickell without Freeman would be Kelly 2.0. 

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8 minutes ago, Rocketsan said:

Was there any truth to the story that Freeman confronted Kelly in front of the team at the 7am meeting? 

I've read that too.  It's also interesting that Kelly offered him the job at LSU after that, from what I understand.

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10 minutes ago, Rocketsan said:

Was there any truth to the story that Freeman confronted Kelly in front of the team at the 7am meeting? 

I have heard nothing to corroborate that. supposedly after Kelly gave his little speech the place was dead quite and Kelly just walked out. Thats coming from Matt Fortuna and Pete Sampson on their podcast.

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I don't quite understand the argument that Jack is "listening to fans." Why would he pick NOW to start doing that? Fans have wanted all sorts of stuff. I think that argument assumes Jack is a complete dunce and in way over his head, which we know to be untrue. He's elite in the world of college athletics and has had just as much a part of bringing ND back to the cusp of winning it all as BK did. I am grateful for what BK did, but not for how he left. I am most grateful that he grabbed Freeman when he did, and took a chance on Tom.

Further to that, I don't think fans' excitement over Freeman is "dumb." Fans, if I'm correct, have zero influence over this decision. Alumni, the Administration, former and current players, the media, and boosters? That's where the power lies. Fans are fickle and emotional. Swarbrick doesn't strike me as either. So I take solace in knowing that if JS thinks this is the right move, he has his reasons for it and the pros outweigh the cons.

I haven't been this excited for a next season/game of ND Football since the end of 2005 when I at least was shocked at how quickly Weis seemed to turn things around in that first year. Of course we all know how that went, but there is literally nothing out there to suggest that MF has anything in common with Weis, Davies, or Willingham (or Faust?). Now... LET'S GOOOOOO!

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22 minutes ago, toddrhodes said:

I don't quite understand the argument that Jack is "listening to fans." Why would he pick NOW to start doing that? Fans have wanted all sorts of stuff. I think that argument assumes Jack is a complete dunce and in way over his head, which we know to be untrue. He's elite in the world of college athletics and has had just as much a part of bringing ND back to the cusp of winning it all as BK did. I am grateful for what BK did, but not for how he left. I am most grateful that he grabbed Freeman when he did, and took a chance on Tom.

Further to that, I don't think fans' excitement over Freeman is "dumb." Fans, if I'm correct, have zero influence over this decision. Alumni, the Administration, former and current players, the media, and boosters? That's where the power lies. Fans are fickle and emotional. Swarbrick doesn't strike me as either. So I take solace in knowing that if JS thinks this is the right move, he has his reasons for it and the pros outweigh the cons.

I haven't been this excited for a next season/game of ND Football since the end of 2005 when I at least was shocked at how quickly Weis seemed to turn things around in that first year. Of course we all know how that went, but there is literally nothing out there to suggest that MF has anything in common with Weis, Davies, or Willingham (or Faust?). Now... LET'S GOOOOOO!

I believe it was Brian Driskell who reported Swarbrick reached out to 5-7 coaches, Campbell and Fickell included, and at least one coach flew to SB to meet w Swarbrick. Driskell reported every time, Swarbrick kept coming back to Freeman. So it sounds like the AD office has been WORKING on this. Freeman and Rees both allegedly blew it out of the water in their interviews. They both differentiated themselves and articulated how they can keep the good rolling while differentiating themselves to take the program to the next step. 
 

My take is that Swarbrick and ND nailed the process. He kicked the tires on a few guys and heard no thanks. He spoke with real deal candidates and for various reasons, it wasn’t right. In Jack’s mind, he probably thinks he did his due diligence and Freeman and Rees just blew him out of the water in their interviews. The stars aligned so to speak with Freeman and Tommy having the chemistry and chops to keep this thing rolling and also improve. I have zero clue if Freeman will end up being a tremendous hire. As I sit here today, my opinion that Freeman was the right hire right now has only gotten stronger since Kelly left. How is today only Thursday? 

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54 minutes ago, Pregame said:

I believe it was Brian Driskell who reported Swarbrick reached out to 5-7 coaches, Campbell and Fickell included, and at least one coach flew to SB to meet w Swarbrick. Driskell reported every time, Swarbrick kept coming back to Freeman. So it sounds like the AD office has been WORKING on this. Freeman and Rees both allegedly blew it out of the water in their interviews. They both differentiated themselves and articulated how they can keep the good rolling while differentiating themselves to take the program to the next step. 
 

My take is that Swarbrick and ND nailed the process. He kicked the tires on a few guys and heard no thanks. He spoke with real deal candidates and for various reasons, it wasn’t right. In Jack’s mind, he probably thinks he did his due diligence and Freeman and Rees just blew him out of the water in their interviews. The stars aligned so to speak with Freeman and Tommy having the chemistry and chops to keep this thing rolling and also improve. I have zero clue if Freeman will end up being a tremendous hire. As I sit here today, my opinion that Freeman was the right hire right now has only gotten stronger since Kelly left. How is today only Thursday? 

So absolutely stoked about Freeman. I was on the Fickell bandwagon, but the more I listened to former players and media pundits who have been around the program the more it just made sense that Freeman was the right choice. I had my doubts about him mid season but if anything he totally proved those doubts unfounded and the defense continued to improve. I realize it wasn't against the best offenses but he held the majority of teams below their season averages which shows he's doing his job. Add to the way the players and recruits respond to him he just seems like the best answer, until he's not, but deserves the shot. Keeping Elston was huge in my opinion. He is easily a top 5 dl coach in America. Combine that with the recruits Freeman is bringing in and the defense is going to reek havoc. If Tommy can be what we all hope he is then this team is set up for a pretty special run.

 

Last I am so glad not to have to see Kelly's face on the sidelines. Even if this is an epic fail and Freeman falls flat I will still not regret losing Kelly.

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Let’s take this opportunity for what it is:  a change to the program that we cannot influence.

There’s no point in trying to turn on each other based on how we felt about the last coach.  Next man in deserves our support at the start.  He shouldn’t have to overcome us as well as other challenges.  

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49 minutes ago, TexasDomer said:

Let’s take this opportunity for what it is:  a change to the program that we cannot influence.

There’s no point in trying to turn on each other based on how we felt about the last coach.  Next man in deserves our support at the start.  He shouldn’t have to overcome us as well as other challenges.  

Ha!  Who needs a voice of reason?  This is DomerDomain after all, where Robert's Rules of Order are routinely disregarded.

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3 hours ago, AnTostal said:

Absolutely.  Hire the guy who gives you the best chance for long term success.  

ND has taken the risk.  Hopefully this turns out to be the best decision in the history of Notre Dame football.  

I hope so too. And I understand taking the risk. I just got irritated with the fans acting like there was no risk. 
 

Hopefully, ND won’t have to go through another HC search for a very long time. However, fans need to understand how important this hire is and it’s not something to be done in a hasty, sloppy manner just Bc that’s the way social media wants it done. 

 

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1 hour ago, ndfanatic78 said:

So absolutely stoked about Freeman. I was on the Fickell bandwagon, but the more I listened to former players and media pundits who have been around the program the more it just made sense that Freeman was the right choice. I had my doubts about him mid season but if anything he totally proved those doubts unfounded and the defense continued to improve. I realize it wasn't against the best offenses but he held the majority of teams below their season averages which shows he's doing his job. Add to the way the players and recruits respond to him he just seems like the best answer, until he's not, but deserves the shot. Keeping Elston was huge in my opinion. He is easily a top 5 dl coach in America. Combine that with the recruits Freeman is bringing in and the defense is going to reek havoc. If Tommy can be what we all hope he is then this team is set up for a pretty special run.

 

Last I am so glad not to have to see Kelly's face on the sidelines. Even if this is an epic fail and Freeman falls flat I will still not regret losing Kelly.

Then your opinion can’t be respected. If you’re willing to sacrifice success for a personal vendetta, you’re a crappy fan.

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3 hours ago, Kid Gloves said:

You don’t know what you’re talking about. There are many coaches who excelled as first time HCs in their first jobs:

Dabo - Clemson

Smart - Georgia

Stoops - Oklahoma

Riley - Oklahoma

Jimbo - Fla St

Shaw - Stanford

Patterson - TCU

Fitzgerald - NW

Gundy - Okl St

Herman - Houston

Rhule - Temple

Wittingham - Utah

And then all of the first time young guys in the NFL of which there are like 10-15 of them. 
 

There is no higher risk in hiring a first time HC than an experienced one. They all have risk and they can all fail. Please stop using the only excuse you have as to why MF will fail as him being a first time HC. Please tell me any other legit reason based on his performance and character as to why he isn’t a great choice………crickets……

First, get rid of anyone who started as a no power 5 that means: Herman, Ruhle, Paterson, Whittingham (TCU and Utah were in the MWC when they started). Also, take off Shaw & Fitzgerald. The expectations at both schools are far lower than ND. 
 

Smart- inherited UGA roster full of 4 & 5 *. Also, until this yr people were ripping him for choosing Fromm over Fields. 
 

Jimbo- cut major corners at FSU. We all know about the off the field issues. He also left that program as a complete disaster.

 

Riley & Day- inherited loaded teams and knew in advance they were going to be HC

Gundy- far lower expectations, path similar to Riley & Day

 

So you’re left with Dabo & Stoops and Stoops didn’t get hired on the fly. 
 

Also, why don’t you list all of the failures? You can’t Bc it’s infinitely longer than the successes. 

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4 hours ago, Kid Gloves said:

Exactly. Padding your wins with teams you are consistently double digit favorites against, but not only losing nearly every big game in 12 years BUT LOSING IN EMBARRASSING FASHION doesn’t really “Wow” me…..

So then Riley & Day are also padding their win totals? You can’t have it both ways.

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4 hours ago, coltssb said:

I would take Cutcliff as a an coach in a minute. I really think that hurt Weis. He put his marbles all in for him. Now, would that affect Rees and his ability to coach or call?  I don’t know. 

Regardless, if he can’t do both, Cutcliffe would be excellent. Not to mention, it opens the door to Arch Manning. Only issue is, he’s old and might just want to be done with coaching.

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