Sorry, Brian Kelly, but getting blown out by Navy is unacceptable

SOUTH BEND, IN - SEPTEMBER 04: Head coach Brian Kelly of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish watches as his team takes on the Purdue Boilermakers at Notre Dame Stadium on September 4, 2010 in South Bend, Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Brian Kelly is still in the first year of his contract, so he won’t be fired. That might be the only way he finds a way to get to sleep tonight.

His Notre Dame team is getting absolutely dominated by Navy. Not just having an off day and getting beat, but getting absolutely dominated. By Navy.

One of the reasons Charlie Weis didn’t last in South Bend, and there were many, was that he was unable to beat the teams that Notre Dame should be beating on a consistent basis. Losses like Navy (twice), Syracuse and UConn at home were the black marks on the Weis era that stung the ND faithful worse than any blowout loss at the hands of USC or Michigan.

One thing Weis never did, however, was get blown out by Navy, and that’s what’s happening to Kelly’s first Notre Dame team. On national television, no less.

The Midshipmen did whatever they wanted on the ground in this one, whether it was Alexander Teich on the fullback dive or Ricky Dobbs on a keeper. Navy averaged at least 113 yards a play in gashing the Irish, and if it wasn’t for a few select plays from stud linebacker Manti T’eo, it would have been 120 per play.

But getting gashed by Navy’s offense is something that happens, even if you spend extra time preparing for it. The option — run at its best — is tough to duplicate. It’s the fact that Notre Dame’s offense has struggled as much as it has that is probably the most disturbing thing for Notre Dame fans. Dayne Crist threw two horrible interceptions at completely inopportune times, and the offensive line struggled to get a push despite averaging about 100 extra pounds per man. Or protect Crist, for that matter.

What Notre Dame is displaying right now is a lack of heart and intensity. It’s something that plagued Weis’ teams often, and apparently Kelly hasn’t been able to get rid of that. He’ll get a pass this year, and maybe even next. But ND fans don’t put up with losing, no matter how much of it they’ve had to deal with in the past few years. And they definitely don’t put up with losing to Navy in a blowout fashion.

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