Apr 12, 2014; Notre Dame, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish quarterback Everett Golson (5) hands the ball off in the first quarter of the Blue-Gold game at Notre Dame Stadium. Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Notre Dame football: Golson's starting quarterback job is his to lose

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Notre Dame’s Everett Golson has already lost his starting quarterback job once in his short career.

And no one expects him to lose it again. The gifted signal caller, who led Notre Dame into the national title game with Alabama after the 2012 campaign, missed all of 2013 due to an academic suspension.

Fall camp is underway for the 2014 edition of the Fighting Irish, and frankly the quarterback job is the reinstated Golson’s to lose. Not that talented sophomore Malik Zaire  isn’t capable of running the show, it’s  unlikely a rookie would start in front 0f someone with a 12-1 record as a starter, and also a candidate for the Maxwell, Davey O’Brien and Walter Camp post-season awards.

“I think that’s more so for y’all … ” Golson said of the “brewing” controversy. “With competition, it’s going to enhance your playing. It kind of raised the stakes a little bit. You can’t come out and be comfortable one day, so you gotta push and keep pushing.”

That’s basically the purpose of a “controversy”.  And head coach Brian Kelly wants everyone to be on the same page.

“I just want to caution everybody that we have I think a very good quarterback in Malik Zaire” Kelly said. “I’m not ready to hand everything over to Everett. I love Everett, he played in the national championship game (the 42-14 loss to Alabama), but I’m also somebody that wants to make sure the quarterback position is such that we give everybody an opportunity to compete for that position.”

Like Golson, Zaire is a highly-skilled dual-threat quarterback. All he lacks is experience, and there’s no reason for him not to get plenty of work this fall, especially since both play with an identical style.  In the past, interchanging someone like last year’s starter Thomas Rees with Golson would necessitate two different playbooks.  Rees was a dropback passer, while Golson, and now Zaire,  are more option oriented.

* * *

Notre Dame permanently to ACC?

The Fighting Irish have joined the ACC in all sports except football, but will play approximately five football games each season against ACC competition. Missing from the schedule in 2015 will be traditional rivals Michigan and Purdue.

Michigan State, off the 2014 and 2015 schedules, will return in 2016. Football traditionalists for years expected Notre Dame to join the Big Ten, but it appears that Notre Dame will eventually gain full membership in the ACC.  Below are the 2014, 2015 and 2016 schedules:

Fighting Irish Schedules  

2014
Aug. 30 RICE
Sept. 6 MICHIGAN (night)
Sept. 13 * Purdue at Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, Ind. (night)
Sept. 27 at Syracuse (MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.)
Oct. 4 STANFORD
Oct. 11 NORTH CAROLINA
Oct. 18 at Florida State
Nov. 1 vs. Navy (FedEx Field, Landover, Md.)
Nov. 8 at Arizona State
Nov. 15 NORTHWESTERN
Nov. 22 LOUISVILLE
Nov. 29 at USC
* Shamrock Series game

2015
Sept. 5 TEXAS
Sept. 12 at Virginia
Sept. 19 GEORGIA TECH
Sept. 26 MASSACHUSETTS
Oct. 3 at Clemson
Oct. 10 NAVY
Oct. 17 USC
Oct. 31 at Temple (Lincoln Financial Services Field)
Nov. 7 at Pittsburgh
Nov. 14 WAKE FOREST
Nov. 21 * Boston College at Fenway Park, Boston, Mass. (night)
Nov. 28 at Stanford
* Shamrock Series game

2016
Sept. 3 at Texas
Sept. 10 NEVADA
Sept. 17 MICHIGAN STATE
Sept. 24 DUKE
Oct. 1 at Syracuse (MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.)
Oct. 8 at North Carolina State
Oct. 15 STANFORD
Oct. 29 MIAMI
Nov. 5 vs. Navy (site TBD)
Nov. 12 * Army at Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas (night)
Nov. 19 VIRGINIA TECH
Nov. 26 at USC
* Shamrock Series game

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Tags: Head Coach Brian Kelly Notre Dame Fighting Irish Football

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