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Fake punt proved to be a risky reward for the Irish

Published: Sep. 14, 2020 at 12:11 AM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - The Irish came out on top against Duke on Saturday but fans may have been a littler nervous after a slow first quarter.

But then things started to turn around after one risky play.

The Irish were facing a fourth and eight on their own 21 when they tricked the whole Blue Devils defense.

Jay Bramblett lined up to punt but faked out Duke.

He didn’t just get the first down; he got a little extra yardage.

“I didn’t know,” quarterback Ian Book said. “No, I didn’t. But I was ready to go. We were keeping the offense right there. I was just excited to see Jay run the ball like that. He did a great job, wasn’t scared, didn’t go around the edge. He went right down the middle. That’s what it’s about. In our punter, that’s great.”

The 15-yard run sparked the Irish offense, later scoring their first touchdown of the season.

“It was one of those that you needed to call it in a very vulnerable area,” Head Coach Brian Kelly said. “In other words, when you’re backed up. So you know, Jay is a very good athlete and you saw that he had to cut back to make that first down, but felt very confident that he was going to get an opportunity to convert that. And we were kind of -- we needed a little bit of momentum and so I just felt like it was the right time to make the call.”

The Irish have now won 19 straight games at home dating back to Sept. 30, 2017.

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