Kelly Wants “Fighting Irish” To Set Bar At Title Height

FORT LAUDERDALE (AP) — Win or lose, Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly doesn’t want his team aiming any lower than the national championship game in the future.

“It’s unacceptable for the standard to be any less than being back here again,” said Kelly on Sunday.

First things first, his top-ranked Fighting Irish will face No. 2 Alabama Monday night hoping for their first national title since 1988.

Kelly has been in national title games before. He led Division II Grand Valley State to championships in 2002 and 2003. For the last one, the team stayed mostly unnoticed in a Best Western and there was so much less buildup that it “was just another game.”

He says “it’s a totally different feeling for this one.”

As for his pregame message, Kelly says he typically goes 80 percent by what he senses from his team.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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