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December 11, 2009
Rivals.com 2009 all-independents team
One look at the Rivals.com all-independents team reveals how Notre Dame won six games this season. A look at the defense indicates how the Irish also lost six games.
Notre Dame has seven players on the all-independent offense and dominates the offensive skill positions, but the Irish only have three representatives on defense. Notre Dame ranked ninth in the nation in total offense and 87th in total defense on its way to a 6-6 season that resulted in the firing of Irish coach Charlie Weis.
The Irish recorded their second-lowest point total of the season in a 23-21 loss to Navy, which has six players on the all-independent defense team.
One glance at the all-independent team also shows how putting together this kind of all-star team is an inherently unfair process because only one player can make the squad from each position.
Navy quarterback Ricky Dobbs ranks second in the nation with 23 touchdown runs and obviously is one of the best players from any of the three independents, but he couldn't crack our team. We had room for only one quarterback and went with Notre Dame's Jimmy Clausen, an All-America candidate and likely first-round NFL draft pick.
Steve Megargee is a national writer for Rivals.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.