We're now less than three weeks way from the Irish football team opening up fall camp for the 2012 season. It's year three under Brian Kelly, who has guided the Irish to an 8-5 record in each of his first two seasons.
The Irish have what many experts believe is the toughest schedule in the country for 2012 so there can certainly be some more loss coming in the months ahead.
But Irish Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick feels the foundation of the Notre Dame program is significantly stronger than its been in years past.
My goal, and a goal shared by Father Jenkins, was to try and solve the structural issues around the program and make sure we didn't have any weak points," Swarbrick explained.
Swarbrick says when those weak points exist, its possible for a program to successful seasons but said "it's fools good."
"It's not sustainable," Swarbrick added. "You have hills and valleys. What helps you even that out and be a consistent performer is when you have the program elements like you see in our women's basketball team, or our soccer team, or our lacrosse team."
Swarbrick points to have all the pieces in place from nutrition, strength and condition, coaching continuity, scheduling, facilities and recruiting.
He feels football now has that.
"I feel very, very good about where football is right now," Swarbrick continued. "I'd make an argument that we're in as good a shape as we have been in two decades as far as the program."
Notre Dame opens the season in Dublin against Navy on September 1st.