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Irish Insights

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Crist is ready for opener

Dayne Crist has a better understanding of what it means to be Notre Dame's starting quarterback entering this year's opener against South Florida.

The senior, who was named the starter last week, said Wednesday that he had jitters in the opener against Purdue.

But with one opening-game experience under his belt, Crist expects a different feel when the game kicks off against the Bulls at 3:30 p.m. Saturday in Notre Dame Stadium.

"I was overly excited," Crist said of last season. "This year, I will be incredibly excited to start the season and finally get to go out and compete against some other guys, but it will be a lot more calming of an experience for me, a more mature time."

Crist also understands that just because he was named the starting quarterback doesn't mean he can let down.

He went through an intense competition with Tommy Rees to win back the starting job after suffering his second significant knee injury in as many years last season.

"The biggest thing is not showing any complacency," Crist said Wednesday.

"I understand what a privilege it is to be the quarterback at Notre Dame. But I also understand the expectations there, and what needs to be done, and the production level that needs to be there every week."

Crist said he doesn't feel he needs to prove himself to people outside the program. He only needs to prove things to himself.

"Just that I can continue to produce, that I can play this game at the highest level, that I can help this team win," Crist said.

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