Golson’s rapid growth puts BCS title within Irish’s grasp

Diamonds are made under intense heat and pressure. Apparently, so are college football stars.

Such is the case for former Myrtle Beach High standout and Notre Dame redshirt freshman quarterback Everett Golson, who will lead the No. 1-ranked Fighting Irish into Monday’s BCS National Championship Game in Miami against No. 2 Alabama.

Forget about easing a QB into the starting role while he learns from the safety of the sidelines and practice field. Golson was thrust into the job over three other candidates last summer after being demoted to the scout team last season.

“Being out back on the scout team a humbling experience for me,” Golson said during Friday’s final press conference before the big game. “I had confidence i was ready to play but it was an awakening. It humbled me and made me re-assess myself.”

It also made Notre Dame coaches reassess Golson. From scout team QB to the starting role, Golson showed he was ready to run the offense and capable of leading the team in a rapid maturation process that landed Notre Dame in the national title game.

“It’s been a steady improvement as the year went on,” said Notre Dame offensive coordinator Chuck Martin. “The difficult thing but nice thing for him is he got thrown to the fire … he didn’t get to ease in this thing like a lot of quarterbacks do.

“Our confidence never waivered as far as how great he would be. We just pushed the envelope on how quickly he could get to the level we knew he could play. We knew there was going to be a maturation process … (but) he probably put more pressure on himself on how quickly he wanted to play at the level we knew he could play.”

Golson took his first snap as starter in the opener against Navy in Dublin, Ireland, then struggled as the Irish survived scares from Purdue and Michigan. He was benched four times through the season for various reasons, but kept coming back and getting better with every game.

In his first six games, Golson ran or passed for seven touchdowns while turning the ball over six times. Through the final six games, which included wins over Oklahoma and Southern Cal, Golson scored 10 touchdowns with only two turnovers and nearly doubled his yardage production.

Despite the late surge, Golson believes it was the Miami game when he started to turn the corner. Kelly benched Golson shortly before the game for being late for a team meeting, then watched Golson respond when he entered after the first possession and led the Irish to a 41-3 win.

“Going through what I’ve been through and coming back to help this team be successful, that built a little bit of confidence,” Golson said. “I didn’t see it at the time because I’m a competitor and I wanted to play, but the coaches were doing what was best for the team and that’s why we’re where we are right now.”

Golson and the Irish face their biggest test in Alabama, which brings a talented defense to Miami to stop the Notre Dame offense. Golson is confident in his and his teammates’ abilities to matchup with the Crimson Tide.

“For me it’s definitely going to be a great opportunity to compete for this national championship. I’m looking forward to it,” Golson said. “We’re obviously the underdogs coming into this game … but it’s really about who’s going to play to the end, all four quarters.”

The Tide is listed as a 10-point favorite over the Irish, but Notre Dame relishes the underdog role. But should Alabama prevent the Irish from winning their first national title since 1988, it won’t be because of an unprepared quarterback.

“Coming through all the things he’s been through, he’s about as battle-tested as they come,” Martin said. “Look at any other quarterback in the country this season and see if they are as battle-tested as Everett. I don’t think so.”

Comments

comments

Sharks dig deep to down Braves, welcome Gravely

Sharks dig deep to down Braves, welcome GravelyThe St. James High volleyball team opened the regular season [more]

Socastee makes strong run to Palmetto Classic finals

Socastee makes strong run to Palmetto Classic finalsThe Socastee High girls tennis team made a strong showing [more]

CCU Soccer: Five Chants, two Lady Chants honored

CCU Soccer: Five Chants, two Lady Chants honoredCoastal Carolina University senior Frantzdy Pierrot leads a group of [more]

Pelicans stay hot; Bailey one win away from 2,000th

Pelicans stay hot; Bailey one win away from 2,000thTyler Alamo and Jesse Hodges both recorded three hits in Tuesday's contest [more]

CCU football gets back to routine for season opener

CCU football gets back to routine for season openerThe Coastal Carolina football team shifted gears into regular-season mode [more]

Pelicans utilityman Alamo nets player of week honor

Pelicans utilityman Alamo nets player of week honorMyrtle Beach Pelicans catcher/first baseman Tyler Alamo has been named [more]

MB sports tourism set to air on HBO's `Real Sports'

MB sports tourism set to air on HBO's `Real Sports'The Grand Strand will grab a piece of the national [more]

Coastal soccer picked to repeat as Sun Belt champs

Coastal soccer picked to repeat as Sun Belt champsThe Coastal Carolina Chanticleers are the favorites to repeat as [more]

Saints see nine make state cuts in season's first meet

Saints see nine make state cuts in season's first meetThe Christian Academy of Myrtle Beach swim team made a [more]

White catches fire in final round, wins All-Star event

White catches fire in final round, wins All-Star event Golfers dream about having the kind of round Jordan White [more]

Local volleyball teams make deep runs at CF Invitational

Local volleyball teams make deep runs at CF InvitationalSaturday's Carolina Forest Invitational featured 15 of the top teams [more]

Pelicans return home on seven-game winning run

Pelicans return home on seven-game winning runThe Myrtle Beach Pelicans earned their fourth sweep of the [more]

Lady Chants open season 2-0 with win over C of C

Lady Chants open season 2-0 with win over C of CCoastal Carolina women’s soccer team improved to 2-0 on the [more]

Seahawks lay goose egg against Rebels in opener

Seahawks lay goose egg against Rebels in openerWhen the Myrtle Beach High football team went to Byrnes [more]

Alamo hits three homers to lead sweep for Pelicans

Alamo hits three homers to lead sweep for PelicansThe Pelicans' offense slugged five home runs, including three from Tyler [more]

Chants, Herd play to draw in winless exhibition slate

Chants, Herd play to draw in winless exhibition slateCoastal Carolina men’s soccer team ended its exhibition season with [more]

QB battle remains up in air as Chants prep for kickoff

QB battle remains up in air as Chants prep for kickoffThe Coastal Carolina football team held its final scrimmage of [more]

Sharks' comeback bid falls short in wild one with Loris

Sharks' comeback bid falls short in wild one with LorisThe St. James High football team went all last season [more]

Illing's five TD passes lead Braves' blowout of Trojans

Illing's five TD passes lead Braves' blowout of TrojansEveryone knew going into the 2017 season that the Socastee [more]

Chiefs ride defense to big road win over Timberland

Chiefs ride defense to big road win over TimberlandIt's not often a team commits six turnovers and wins. [more]

Tigers overcome turmoil, blast Bulldogs in opener

Tigers overcome turmoil, blast Bulldogs in openerWet field conditions forced the Conway High football team to [more]

Panthers, Sharks warm up for preseason tournament

Panthers, Sharks warm up for preseason tournamentThe Carolina Forest volleyball team got one last tune-up Thursday [more]

CCU soccer hosts Marshall in final exhibition contest

CCU soccer hosts Marshall in final exhibition contestThe Coastal Carolina University men’s soccer team will host its [more]

Pelicans score season-high 13 runs in win over Dash

Pelicans score season-high 13 runs in win over DashZack Short reached base five times and the Myrtle Beach Pelicans' [more]

Week 0 Previews & Picks: Conway in coaching limbo

Week 0 Previews & Picks: Conway in coaching limboFor the first time in 35 years, a local high [more]

Sharks dig deep to down Braves, welcome Gravely

Sharks dig deep to down Braves, welcome GravelyThe St. James High volleyball team opened the regular season [more]

Socastee makes strong run to Palmetto Classic finals

Socastee makes strong run to Palmetto Classic finalsThe Socastee High girls tennis team made a strong showing [more]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2017 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach