SOUTH BEND - It was more of the same at Notre Dame Stadium on Saturday as the Irish took one on the chin from Cinncinnati 24-13.
Notre Dame has struggled all season with consistency and Saturday was no different as moments of brilliance were followed by moments that you would rather forget.
"To play a good opponent, you have to match your play with a high level of competency in terms of the mundane things," said Irish coach Brian Kelly after the game. "We didn't take care of the basics today, and all we needed to do was be efficient at the basics today."
"We didn't coach very well today, and we didn't play very well. That's the long and that's the short of it, and Cincinnati was the better football team today."
The Bearcats looked that way most of the afternoon taking advantage of key moments and key opportunities.
"There were some good things, but when we needed those big stops obviously, we didn't feel good about the touchdown we let off right before the half," said Kelly. "Look, there's a litany of things relative to pass coverage. The fact of the matter is it wasn't good enough. So if you want to take bits and pieces, I could take bits and pieces for each unit and say, well, that was pretty good for them. It wasn't good enough across the board. We didn't coach well enough, and we didn't play well enough."
Able to get back to 17-13 late in the game Cincinnati took their next drive 80 yards on seven plays and then spoiled any Notre Dame attempt to get closer.
Meanwhile a lot of questions in the post-game press conference centered on the revolving door at quarterback. Jack Coan, Tyler Buchner, and Drew Pyne continue to be the topic of conversation.
"It's a good question. It's a fair question," said Kelly after the game. "Clearly, we can't continue down this road of who's the flavor of the week here. We're going to have to sit down and figure this out and decide which direction we want to go because it doesn't give us the kind of continuity and consistency in offense that we need."
Drew Pyne's success a week ago led to a question on the fact he didn't start.
"Look, he didn't start, so he didn't impress me that much or he would have been the starter," said Kelly. "We're trying to figure it out, and we've got a guy that we really like in Jack in terms of what he did. He looked really good at times. It's hard to put much on Jack other than the interception. He's dealing with pressure in the pocket too."
That protection continues to be an issue as the offensive line woes the team has experienced continue.
"We were trying to give ourselves a chance," said Kelly. "We were trying to do anything we could to protect. It seemed that we did a better job in the second half, but we clearly struggled."
"It's something that we're well aware of, we're working on. But like I said, there's no waiver wire. There's nobody getting traded. We're working, and we've got to coach the guys that we have and we've got to get them coached better and put them in better positions to succeed."