Parking issues prevented Parrker Westphal from getting to Soldier Field for the start of Notre Dame’s dominating 41-3 win over Miami in Chicago last night.
“I missed the whole first quarter,” the 2014 cornerback prospect from Bolingbrook High School (Bolingbrook, Ill.) said.
So he never saw a pair of deep drops by Miami receiver Phillip Dorsett on the game’s opening possession. Not many Miami players were getting behind the Irish at all by the time Westphal arrived and he was impressed with Notre Dame’s defensive effort.
“The defense was around the ball most of the time,” he said. “They didn’t give up any deep routes. All they were doing was trying short passes, so that was nice.
“The DBs were good. They were getting around the ball a lot. I was paying attention to #5 (Manti Te'o), he was real aggressive.”
The 6-foot-1, 181-pound Westphal has an impressive offer sheet that includes Notre Dame, Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, Iowa, West Virginia and Florida State among others. He was impressed with the atmosphere and the overall performance of Notre Dame in its fifth straight victory to open the season.
“It was a big win,” said Westphal. “It was a sellout crowd. The stadium is nice and it was loud. I liked it.”
The 2014 corner was also impressed with at least one aspect of Notre Dame’s Shamrock Series uniforms.
“I liked the helmets a lot,” he said.
Chuck Martin stopped by Bolingbrook during the Irish’s bye and while he was happy to have Westphal in attendance last night, the Notre Dame assistant wants to get him back down to South Bend again this fall. Westphal, who was at Illinois’ game last weekend, would like to return to Notre Dame after visiting in the summer, but has to check his own team’s postseason schedule first.
“I don’t have anything planned.”
SPENCE LIKES GOLSON: He has been to several Notre Dame games over the years, but Shelby Spence never enjoyed a short 15-minute commute like last night. The 2014 Chicago quarterback wasn’t sure why Everett Golson didn’t start the game, but was impressed with the sophomore signal-caller when he did get in.
“It actually caught me off guard,” said Spence of Tommy Rees getting the start. “My understanding prior to the game was that (Golson) was going to be the starter and I wasn’t sure what transpired.
“I was really impressed with everything; from his warmups to his composure throughout the game and how he handled the situation and put up 41 points. It’s always a good night for a quarterback when that happens.”
The 6-foot, 195-pounder from De La Salle High School did his best to imagine himself on the field.
“I try to watch some of the things Everett Golson does,” he said. “I like studying quarterbacks. I see how he’s able to operate in the offense and I kind of envision myself and how I would fit into that offense.
“I thought they controlled the ball. They were balanced with the run and the pass. I liked when they got Everett Golson out on the edge and allowed him to make some plays.”
Spence enjoyed the Soldier Field atmosphere.
“It was packed; mostly with Notre Dame fans obviously because it’s closer,” he said. “It was just another great atmosphere at a Notre Dame game.
“They obviously dominated Miami in all phases of the game. It was great to see them in action.”
Spence, who was at Michigan State for the Irish’s game in East Lansing last month, is still looking for his first offer, but has been receiving a lot of interest since the start of September. He hopes to make other stops this fall.
“I want to get to games at Notre Dame and also I want to maybe get to games at Florida State, Northwestern and Michigan throughout the season.”