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#pounditFriday, April 12, 2024

Marcus Freeman admits to 1 big mistake in first Notre Dame season

Marcus Freeman with the media

Dec 6, 2021; Notre Dame, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish head football coach Marcus Freeman speaks during his formal introduction on the campus of the University of Notre Dame. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Marcus Freeman is entering his second season as Notre Dame head coach, and the first one was clearly a learning experience for him.

Freeman openly targeted a national title in his first season with the Fighting Irish, and was not shy about pushing those expectations. However, the team ended up going 9-4, including an 0-2 start to the season that saw a stunning home loss to Marshall.

Freeman is learning from his mistakes. He said that he needed to be much more realistic in saying what is expected of his teams.

“Last year, I’m talking about national championships, winning the 12th and all this stuff and you’re 9-4,” Freeman told Adam Rittenberg of ESPN. “That’s what I’ve gone away from. Don’t even talk about those things.

“All we need to focus on is reaching our full potential. Who cares about Week 12? Like, stop talking about national championships. That’s too big. It’s too big for them to really understand what it takes for that to be the result. That’s been my mindset.”

The 2022 Fighting Irish were plagued by inconsistent quarterback play, but they did rally to finish the season 9-2 in their last 11 games. This season, they have a new quarterback, and while expectations are still high, Freeman will be a bit less bullish about them publicly.

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