2001 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team

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2001 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football
Notre Dame Fighting Irish logo.svg
2001 record5–6
Head coachBob Davie (5th season)
Offensive coordinatorKevin Rogers (3rd season)
Offensive schemeOption
Defensive coordinatorGreg Mattison (5th season)
Base defense4–3
Home stadiumNotre Dame Stadium (c. 80,795, grass)
← 2000
2002 →
2001 Division I-A independents football records
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
South Florida           8 3  
Troy State           7 4  
UCF           6 5  
Notre Dame           5 6  
Utah State           4 7  
Connecticut           2 9  
Navy           0 10  
Rankings from AP Poll

The 2001 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team represented the University of Notre Dame in the 2001 NCAA Division I-A football season. The team was coached by Bob Davie and played its home games at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Indiana.

Season overview[edit]

With 19 recruits signed to help replace the nine players leaving for the NFL,[1] there were high expectations for the Irish for the 2001 season. Three players were named to pre-season All-America teams while the team was ranked as highly as 12th in the nation.[2] With former starting quarterback, Arnaz Battle, moving in the off-season to wide receiver,[3] Davie faced the decision of having to play his replacement from 2000, Matt LoVecchio, or to replace LoVecchio with fellow sophomore Carlyle Holiday. Prior to their first game, Davie hinted that he might have a surprise at quarterback,[4] however, LoVecchio started at the fourth-ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers. Notre Dame's first play from scrimmage proved to be a harbinger when the Irish fumbled and Nebraska recovered. With LoVecchio ineffective throughout the first quarter, Holiday took over and led the Irish to a field goal. Holiday, however, was ineffective throughout the rest of the game and the only other Irish score came after Shane Walton blocked a punt and gave the Irish the ball on the 4 yard line. Unable to capitalize on Nebraska's mistakes, and having four turnovers themselves, the Irish lost the game 27–10.[5] With a small quarterback controversy, the season was interrupted by the September 11, 2001 attacks. With all Division I-A football games canceled after the attacks,[6] the September 15 game against Purdue was moved to the end of the season. With promises of heightened security,[7] prayers, and a stadium-wide fundraiser to help the victims of the attacks,[8] the Irish returned to the field the next week to face the Michigan State Spartans. With LoVecchio getting the start, he had a better game than his first, but the Irish fell short of the Spartans for the fifth straight year.[9]

After the loss, Davie named Holiday the starting quarterback for the Texas A&M game.[10] Though LoVecchio would play in later games, he would never start again for the Irish and eventually transferred from the school.[11] Playing in front of, at the time, the largest crowd ever to watch a football game in Texas, Holiday was knocked out of the game with a neck injury before halftime. The Irish were unable move the ball and lost 24–3, moving to 0–3 for the first time ever.[12] With Holiday back the next week, he led the Irish to their first victory of the season against the Pittsburgh Panthers,[13] and continued to roll with wins over West Virginia and USC to put the Irish back to a 3–3 record.[14][15] With a loss the next week to Boston College,[16] however, the Irish hopes for a bowl game were dwindling and all but gone with a loss the next week to the seventh-ranked Tennessee Volunteers.[17]

With a 3–5 record, the Irish would need to win all of their remaining games to avoid Davie's second losing season for the team. The Irish looked to turn it around with a dominating win over Navy that increased their record winning streak over them to 38 games,[18] however, fell to Stanford the next week after both Holiday and LoVecchio completed only one pass each the entire game.[19] Assured of Notre Dame's eighth losing season ever, the Irish traveled to face the Purdue Boilermakers for the game missed after the September 11 attacks. Though the Irish defense helped secure the win and the 5–6 record,[20] it wasn't enough for the Notre Dame administration who fired Davie the next day.[21]


September 88:00 p.m.at No. 4 NebraskaNo. 18ABCL 10–2778,118
September 222:30 p.m.Michigan StateNo. 23NBCL 10–1780,795
September 293:30 p.m.at Texas A&MABCL 3–2487,206
October 62:30 p.m.Pittsburgh
  • Notre Dame Stadium
  • South Bend, IN (rivalry)
NBCW 24–780,795
October 132:30 p.m.West Virginia
  • Notre Dame Stadium
  • South Bend, IN
NBCW 34–2480,795
October 202:30 p.m.USC
NBCW 27–1680,795
October 277:30 p.m.at Boston CollegeESPNL 17–2144,500
November 32:30 p.m.No. 7 Tennessee
  • Notre Dame Stadium
  • South Bend, IN
NBCL 18–2880,795
November 171:00 p.m.Navy
  • Notre Dame Stadium
  • South Bend, IN (rivalry)
NBCW 34–1680,795
November 248:00 p.m.at No. 13 StanfordABCL 13–1751,780
December 13:30 p.m.at PurdueABCW 24–1568,750


2001 Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team roster
Players Coaches
Pos. # Name Class
WR 3 Arnaz Battle Jr
T 78 Jordan Black Jr
TE 48 Jerome Collins Fr
T 63 Brennan Curtin Jr
QB 9 Pat Dillingham Fr
C 52 Jeff Faine Jr
RB 12 Tony Fisher Sr
WR 6 David Givens Sr
QB 7 Carlyle Holiday Fr
WR 21 Javin Hunter Sr
RB 22 Julius Jones So
FB 39 Tom Lopienski Jr
G 79 Sean Mahan Jr
T 70 Jim Molinaro So
TE 84 John Owens Sr
G 72 Ryan Scarola Sr
T 75 Kurt Vollers Redshirt.svg Sr
Pos. # Name Class
LB 30 Rocky Boiman Sr
DT 60 Darrell Campbell So
DB 5 Glenn Earl So
LB 41 Mike Goolsby So
LB 51 Tyreo Harrison Sr
DB 5 Ron Israel Sr
LB 56 Pat Ryan Jr
S 20 Gerome Sapp Jr
CB 42 Shane Walton Jr
DE 98 Anthony Weaver Sr
DT 94 Andy Wisne Sr
Special teams
Pos. # Name Class
P 17 Joey Hildbold Jr
K 13 Nick Setta So
Head coach
Coordinators/assistant coaches

  • (C) Team captain
  • (S) Suspended
  • (I) Ineligible
  • Injured Injured
  • Redshirt Redshirt

Last update: 2001-12-18

Team players in the NFL[edit]

Player Position Round Pick NFL club
Anthony Weaver Defensive end 2 52 Baltimore Ravens
Rocky Boiman Linebacker 4 133 Tennessee Titans
John Owens Tight end 5 138 Detroit Lions
Tyreo Harrison Linebacker 6 198 Philadelphia Eagles
Javin Hunter Wide Receiver 6 206 Baltimore Ravens
David Givens Wide Receiver 7 252 New England Patriots


  1. ^ "Football Announces 2001 Signees". UND.cstv.com. February 7, 2001. Retrieved September 11, 2007.
  2. ^ "Notre Dame Football Gets Early Praise In Preseason Polls". UND.cstv.com. July 3, 2001. Retrieved September 11, 2007.
  3. ^ "Battle Talks About Making The Switch". UND.cstv.com. March 30, 2001. Retrieved September 11, 2007.
  4. ^ Connolly, Mike (September 5, 2001). "Davie hints at QB surprise". The Observer. UK. Archived from the original on 2001-09-15. Retrieved September 11, 2007.
  5. ^ Rosenblatt, Richard (September 8, 2001). "No. 17 Irish Drop Season-Opener To No. 5 Nebraska, 27–10". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  6. ^ "A day seared in time". Thoroughbred Times. September 15, 2001. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  7. ^ "Football Fans Can Expect A Heightened Security Presence In And Around The Stadium This Saturday". UND.cstv.com. September 18, 2001. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  8. ^ "Prayer, Song To Mark Football Home Opener". UND.cstv.com. September 19, 2001. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  9. ^ "No. 23 Notre Dame Falls To Michigan State, 17–10". UND.cstv.com. September 22, 2001. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  10. ^ "Carlyle Holiday Named Starting Quarterback". UND.cstv.com. September 24, 2001. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  11. ^ "Notre Dame's LoVecchio to transfer". Sports Illustrated. May 22, 2002. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  12. ^ Graczyk, Michael (September 29, 2001). "Irish Fall To Texas A&M, 24–3". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  13. ^ "Football Earns First Win Of The Season Over Pittsburgh, 24–7". UND.cstv.com. October 6, 2001. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  14. ^ Coyne, Tom (October 13, 2001). "Irish Football Puts Away West Virginia, 34–24". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  15. ^ Coyne, Tom (October 20, 2001). "Irish Knock Off USC, 27–16". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  16. ^ Ulman, Howard (October 27, 2001). "Irish Fall To The Eagles, 21–17". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  17. ^ Coyne, Tom (November 3, 2001). "No. 7 Tennessee Tops Notre Dame, 28–18". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  18. ^ Coyne, Tom (November 17, 2001). "Notre Dame Knocks Off Navy, 34–16". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  19. ^ Beacham, Greg (November 24, 2001). "Football Falls To No. 13 Stanford, 17–13". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  20. ^ Gelston, Dan (December 1, 2001). "Irish Football Puts Away Purdue, 24–18". UND.cstv.com. Retrieved September 12, 2007.
  21. ^ "Davie's tenure at ND ends after five seasons". ESPN. December 2, 2001. Retrieved September 12, 2007.