Each Thursday this season I want to take a look at the 3 most dangerous players or facets of our upcoming opposition, and just provide short thoughts on each. So let’s delve into my 3 points of concern regarding the Marshall Thundering Herd and just how I think Notre Dame should be able to handedly nullify each.
#1: Henry Colombi
Last weeks stats vs Norfolk State: 24-26, 92.3% completion, 205 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT / 6 carries for 11 yards rushing
After backing up Jordan Love at Utah State, Henry Colombi started several games at Texas Tech, just prior to his first game last weekend for the Marshall Thundering Herd. And had a very respectable first outing for The Herd. Henry Colombi is your prototypical spread system QB. Nothing too flashy to kill us, short dumps, typical college QB. Based on last weekend his release time is quick. Meaning pressure will be key to slowing him down. Beat writers for the Herd are praising his rhythm, which I can’t imagine the caliber of talent the Irish have having any issue throwing him off his rhythm.
In order to nullify Colombi’s game the Irish will look to jam receivers and cause havoc at the line of scrimmage. The Thundering Herd will not be looking to beat us on the deep ball, we know where it’s going, adjust coverage accordingly and let’s get some turnovers in the flats.
As for how to disrupt his rhythm? Come on… it’s Notre Dame vs. Marshall. If Notre Dame isn’t dictating the tempo of the game I don’t know what to tell you. There is NO reason ND doesn’t absolutely set the parameters of this matchup. The disparity in talent should never warrant them controlling the tempo. (Just facts)
#2 Corey Gammage
Week 1 stats: 2 catches, 20 yards, 1 TD
Corey Gammage is regarded by most of the Herd Faithful to be the offense’s most dangerous threat. At 6’ 4” and 220 pounds, Gammage offers Colombi a large target that can easily turn up field and carry a few defenders on his stumbles for additional yardage following tightly contested catches. He is a physical force that ND will have to limit. But don’t worry, I mean a 6’ 4” threat at receiver may intimidate the rest of the Sun Belt (shout out Scott L. for the catch on that one), but we just competed against one of the most impressive wide receiving corps I can remember in last week’s Ohio State team. We held Ohio State’s receivers throughout that game. I don’t care what you say, Gammage isn’t Randy Moss. He isn’t going to solo-carry Marshall from the receiver position.
#3 Koby Cumberlander
Week 1 stats: 7 tackles, 2.5 TFL, 1 sack,
The Herds most dominant defensive player is 6’ 3” 235 lb Defensive End Koby Cumberland. Cumberland leads his defensive front with his speed and effort. Which are just the two traits you think it would take for the leader of your defense team to be an undersized DE. His speed means he will be looking to fly around the outside to get into the backfield. So he’s going to be looking to outrun our line as he did Norfolk State’s. What do we need to do about that?…
Let him. Let him run outside as far as he’d like. We’ll just take advantage of his shortcomings and cut the ball inside, play in and play out. As long as the much larger offensive line of Notre Dame doesn’t overextend themselves and remain balanced, I don’t see any reason they aren’t paving roads for our running backs.
When facing Notre Dame, Koby will be facing off against the largest slabs of beef he’ll be facing all season in the Irish offensive line. No reason the Marshall Thundering Herd’s defensive line isn’t the next victim of the NFL factory that is Notre Dame’s offensive line.
So ultimately, what is the response from ND to nullify each of these guys? Nothing really. Just play Notre Dame Football. We’ve got the talent, the program, and the tradition. All joking aside we can not take any opponent likely. We lost 1. We lost our 1 for the year. No more.
No sleeping on the competition (had to say that before this next part) but, I’m looking for ND to destroy the Marshall Thundering Herd. Let’s go out and run the score up against the lesser competition the haters love to bring up each week. After last week, an absolute touchdown marathon for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish is just what the doctor ordered.
Thank you all for taking the time to give this a read. Thanks to Burke for getting these images together for me.
Let’s go Irish!
Play like an absolute champ,