Matt Cashore-US PRESSWIRE
Notre Dame traveled to Oklahoma without its leading kick returner and yards per carry leader.
When the Notre Dame Fighting Irish deboarded their plan in Oklahoma there was a noticeable face absent. ESPN's Matt Fortuna confirmed that George Atkinson III did not make the trip with the team because of flu-like symptoms. I asked Fortuna to describe Atkinson to me and this is what he said that he,
"Touches the ball minimally as the No. 3 back but is a homerun threat. One of 10 fastest guys in college football for my money. Had two kick return TDs last year and is the only real special teams threat."
Fortuna followed up by saying that Atkinson, "averages nearly 9 ypc when he gets it so hes a huge playmaker gone off an already struggling offense."
The Irish enter tonight's game with the nation's 100th ranked passing offense and in need of running backs in playmakers to try and keep pace with Oklahoma's offense. The loss of Atkinson puts more pressure on the Irish defense to bottle up Landry Jones and company.