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Irish Insights


It's not pretty, but Irish lead

Notre Dame takes an ugly 7-6 lead into halftime over Pittsburgh.

And the Irish's points came just how everyone expected, right.


Jonas Gray, the power back of the Irish's back field, sprung loose for a 79-yard touchdown run and a 7-3 lead with 13:44 to play.

It was the longest Notre Dame touchdown run since Terrance Howard broke off an 80-yarder against West Virginia in 2000.

Gray got a huge block from receiver Michael Floyd and was helped along by four missed tackles by Pitt's defense. It was the senior's first career touchdown and is the final sign that he is over the fumble at the 1 in the season opener.

Pitt could only muster another field goal, this one from 23 out, as an answer to Gray's TD to leave Notre Dame with a 7-6 lead with 9:13 left in the first half.

Notre Dame gave away a touchdown with 6:50 to play in the first half when quarterback Tommy Rees went to tight end Tyler Eifert late and was intercepted at Pitt's 5. Eifert needed to get back to the ball better,

Turnover No. 15 for the season could come back to haunt Irish, but it didn't right away, as the defense came to the rescue again and force the Panthers to punt.

Rees and Eifert got some redemption on last drive of first half, as they hooked up three times, but a bad snap led to a missed field goal by David Ruffer.

The Irish let a touchdown and field goal slip away against the Panthers as a first half of bad offense ended with Pitt taking a knee.

Notre Dame got 258 yards in first half, but two turnovers and missed chances still haunt Irish.

Pitt has 143 yards, went to a walk-on QB at one point and can't get anything but field goals.