Brian Kelly as a meme, Wake Forest's kicker and other fun moments of Notre Dame's season

Carter Karels
South Bend Tribune

From postgame locker room celebrations to the BK Homeboy meme, Notre Dame has produced a lot of fun moments — beyond the wins — throughout its undefeated season. The South Bend Tribune recaps the best of them.

1. The #BKHomeboy meme

The funniest moment of the season came from the aftermath of a picture head coach Brian Kelly took with a handful of players. Before departing for a flight to San Diego for ND’s Oct. 27 game against Navy, Kelly posed with members of the Irish defense. A normal thing to do, right? Well, he dropped to one knee, tucked a binder and neck pillow under his left arm and flashed the peace sign in awkward fashion.

What ensued was a social media frenzy of memes teasing Kelly's pose. Fans photoshopped him into iconic movies and sports scenes. One person dressed up as him for Halloween, striking the pose to post on Twitter. Even receiver Chris Finke poked fun at Kelly, tweeting a picture of a couple teammates and him flashing the peace sign on one knee following the Navy win.


— Matt (@mattygOFD) October 31, 2018


— Chris Finke (@SlipperyFox10) October 28, 2018

Where's #BKHomeboy?

— HLS_SupermanTDJesus (@SupermanTDJesus) October 27, 2018

I'm sorry, guys.

— bridget (@bridgetgoirish) October 29, 2018

Believed to be one of @CoachBrianKelly’s first business trips in this country.

— Phil Rister (@ND_Phil) November 1, 2018

To read the Tribune's story on the meme, click here.

2. Wake Forest kicker

Facing a fourth-and-6, the Demon Deacons lined up to attempt a 38-yard field goal. However, true freshman kicker Nick Sciba was nowhere to be found. Ten of Sciba’s teammates waited as their kicker hurried onto the field with 18 ticks remaining on the play clock. Wake Forest elected to not waste a timeout as Sciba hurried his routine. His kick sailed and clanged off the left upright. Twitter made sure he would not make the same mistake again.

Wake Forest's kicker Nick Sciba was still practicing when he was supposed to be on the field...

He still got on in time, but of course, he missed the FG.

— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) September 22, 2018

3. Shamrock Series unis reaction

The Notre Dame and New York Yankee brands alone can be enough to incite disgust from opposing fans. But to combine them? The Aug. 16 unveiling of ND’s Shamrock Series uniforms against Syracuse this season sparked a Twitter riot. The Irish opted to mesh both brands, as pinstripes streamed across the uniforms’ helmets, sleeves and pants.

Full look

— Chris Bacsik (@NDFBEquipment) August 16, 2018

Jason Kirk of SBNation photoshopped the rapper Drake and logos of the Los Angeles Lakers and the University of Duke onto the uniforms, poking fun at the mainstream, high-profile combo. Others mocked or expressed their distaste for the look in general. Uniform Twitter can be vicious.

I've fixed Notre Dame's Yankees uniforms

— Jason Kirk (@JasonKirkSBN) August 16, 2018

Exclusive clip of Notre Dame's players after they got those pinstripe uniforms.

— Stewart Mandel (@slmandel) August 16, 2018

They’ll give pinstripes to anyone these days

— Big Cat (@BarstoolBigCat) August 16, 2018

Solid No from me.. Bring back 2014! ‍♂️

— Cj Prosise (@Prosisely_22) August 16, 2018

4. Legends Trophy

Handling then-ranked No. 7 Stanford a 38-17 defeat was enough for the Irish — but Kelly had to fulfill his promise. On the Thursday before the Sept. 29 contest, Kelly told his players that he would drink from the Legends Trophy, which is gifted to the game's winner. He kept his word, drinking red Gatorade from the crystal bowl as a raucous locker room cheered him on.

So, @CoachBrianKelly had plans for the Legends Trophy...#GoIrish ☘️

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) September 30, 2018

5. All hail Matt Balis

Kelly awarded 11 different players the game ball prior to the Nov. 24 regular season finale at USC. Instead of making it 12 after a win over the Trojans, Kelly gifted it to his strength coach. Matt Balis’ fingerprints in his second year with the program showed throughout this season, especially down the stretch in November. A horde of ND players reacted to the news by hoisting Balis on their shoulders and cheering. 

The way we’ve played in November with strength and durability is thanks to Coach Balis and our strength staff for pushing us to be better every day.#GoIrish ☘️

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) November 26, 2018

He makes sure our TRAITS OF EXCELLENCE are followed throughout the year - we couldn’t have done this without his leadership!

Game ball for our win over SC goes to head strength coach, Matt Balis.

— Brian Kelly (@CoachBrianKelly) November 25, 2018

Other videos of the Irish players celebrating their undefeated regular season also surfaced on social media. One included a congregation of ND players shouting the lyrics to the rap song “Mo Bamba” by Sheck Wes.

Just when you thought you’d seen all the celebrations...

, @rhainsey72! #GoIrish ☘️

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) November 25, 2018

Honorable mention

• Before ND clashed with Florida State for its Nov. 10 Senior Night game, the Irish teased the green uniforms they would don by reenacting an iconic scene from the movie "Rudy."

For our seniors...#GoIrish ☘️

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) November 9, 2018

• Defensive lineman Chase Winovich created backlash after his postgame comments following Michigan's 24-17 loss at Notre Dame. The senior doubted that his Wolverines were the lesser team despite the final tally.

“I’m not really sure where they beat us,” Winovich said. “Still kind of confused. I came in the locker room and I looked around kind of confused how we lost that game, because I didn’t feel like they dominated us on any facet of the ball.

“But, like I said, ultimately they made plays when they needed to and that’s a credit to them.”

• Defensive line coach Mike Elston expressed his admiration of a certain photo from ND’s victory over Michigan. Wolverine backup quarterback Dylan McCaffrey was pictured. While he released the football, McCaffrey was swarmed by a pair of ND defensive linemen. Their hands were all over McCaffrey, including his helmet.

I don’t know who took this photo, but it’s now my screensaver so thank you!!

On to Ball State!

Go Irish

— Mike Elston (@CoachMikeElston) September 3, 2018

Elston can thank the Tribune’s Robert Franklin for snapping the photo.

• ND heard all week about the intimidating “Enter Sandman” entrance at Virginia Tech. Following ND’s 45-23 victory on Oct. 6 in Blacksburg, Va., the Irish celebrated by blasting the Metallica song in the locker room.

Mood all day! #GoIrish ☘️

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) October 7, 2018

• The Irish players found a game other than football that interests them. Referred to as “Knockout,” a bevy of ND players challenge each other to the game to kill time. Almost every player, especially Te'von Coney, is very opinionated on who is the team's best knockout challenger. To read more about it, click here.

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly, center, poses with members of Notre Dame’s defense before a flight to San Diego for the Irish game against Navy in October.