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Irish players look to get 'fun' back

NOTRE DAME, Ind. -

Brian Kelly called out his players Saturday, saying they lacked passion and enthusiasm.

The Irish players echoed that statement Wednesday when they spoke to media, adding they lost the feeling of having fun.

"I think that's the thing we lost.  We lost that fun mentality, a little bit of that football genuine care about the game" Mike McGlinchey said.

This week, players uttered the terms "play loose" and "have fun," adding the first month did not emulate any sort of fun.

"They're not playing free, we're not playing free, we're not having fun," DeShone Kizer said. "In the past four games, we're completely grinding for something other than to represent ourselves, our families and represent Notre Dame and try to get W's."

Playing with passion Kelly says should come naturally given the opportunity each of his players has in front of them.

"If you can't excited about playing for the University of Notre Dame, then we've got a problem," James Onwualu said.

Notre Dame will look to salvage its season Saturday against Syracuse, and getting that fun rejuvenated back into the program.

"Practice yesterday was a blast, it was a good time to go out there and play football, to play free and have a good time," Kizer said. "Today's practice will be the same, Saturday will be the same and there will be a 'W' in that column when we go out there and play the way we know how to."

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