The Observer is a Student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame & Saint Mary's. Learn more about us.



Goolsby returns to special roots

Matt Lozar | Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Yes, that was the starting middle linebacker playing outside of his normal role on the defense Saturday against Michigan.Mike Goolsby talked to running backs/special teams coach Buzz Preston last year about getting on special teams because Goolsby was disappointed in the unit’s lack of production.”Those are my roots,” Goolsby said. “It’s just something watching last year, I was disappointed in our special teams performance in that area. That’s something that’s near and dear to my heart because I realize how important they are.”

Holiday gets on the fieldHead coach Tyrone Willingham mentioned in the off-season that Carlyle Holiday could return punts at some point during the season. It didn’t happen at Brigham Young, but in the week leading up to the Michigan game, the coaches approached Holiday, and he said he was ready.Holiday proved he was, averaging 70 yards on his seven returns Saturday.”As soon as I switched from quarterback, I think it was going through their minds to get the ball in my hands,” Holiday said. “Special teams was a big part of it. I wanted to make some part of contribution. Being on the sidelines against BYU really kind of hurt me.”The only potentially major mistake Holiday made was not calling for a fair catch with a Michigan defender barreling down on him. Holiday drew a 15-yard interference penalty, but he attributed the decision to being inexperienced.”I saw him coming, but I’m new at this,” Holiday said with a smile. “I don’t know what a fair catch is in those types of situations. I just want to make a play.”

Tyrone dancesThat emotion fans saw from Willingham didn’t end on the sidelines Saturday afternoon.It overflowed in a dance from the coach in the locker room.”That’s the second time I’ve seen him do that,” Goolsby said. “The other was [at] FSU [in 2002]. He was up on a chair. It was real smooth.”As for Goolsby’s score for Willingham’s locker room dance?”It was a 10,” he said, “just because we won.”

GameDay make-up?According to its Web site, the ESPN College GameDay crew will be venturing to East Lansing, Mich. for its pre-game and scoreboard shows throughout the day Saturday.Last week, ESPN pulled the show from the Notre Dame-Michigan game and went to the Georgia-South Carolina game.The impact of Hurricane Ivan on the originally picked game for GameDay this week – LSU-Auburn – could have something to do with the change.