Thursday, May 29, 2008

Martin Joins Hansbrough In South Bend

This blog has been resurrected under a new name based off of my Colts blog. This blog will be updated weekly with the biggest news of the week until football season, when you can expect a blog 2 or 3 times a week.

Scott Martin was a highly touted recruit coming out of Northwest Indiana. When he committed to Purdue, it looked like ND missed out on a local prospect. However, due to a lack of playing time and wanting a change of scenery, Martin has joined the Irish after playing 1 year for Purdue.

For Notre Dame, Martin and Ben Hansbrough, a guard from Mississippi State, transferring to Notre Dame changes the outlook on the future. Instead of 2008-09 being the make or break year, it looks like there could be a winning tradition building up in South Bend.

Scott Martin will most likely play wing for the Irish, replacing Zach Hillesland. Martin is a fantastic shooter and has got the size that Notre Dame has been lacking at the wing position until Hillesland became the starter. Hansbrough will most likely play shooting guard in the same role that Kyle McAlarney currently has.

Notre Dame may not have signed any recruits for 2008, but their 2009 class looks like it could be the start of something special. Joey Brooks, a wing, and Jack Cooley, a Harangody clone, are the incoming freshmen for 2009. Ryan Ayers, Zach Hillesland, Kyle McAlarney, and Luke Zeller are the 2008 seniors, and it appears that McAlarney and Hillesland have their replacements. Notre Dame has 2 scholarships open from the transfer of Joe Harden and graduation of Rob Kurz. I expect Notre Dame to reel in two more quality players and set up a great roster for 2009-10. Here is the early prediction of the 2008-09 and 2009-10 rosters.

PG-Tory Jackson (Jr.)
SG-Kyle McAlarney (Sr.)
SF-Zach Hillesland (Sr.)
PF-Luke Zeller (Sr.)
C-Luke Harangody (Jr.)
6th-Ryan Ayers/SF/Sr.
7th-Jonathan Peoples/SG/Jr.
8th-Tyrone Nash/SG/So.
9th-Carlton Scott/PF/Fr. Redshirt
10th-Tim Abromaitis/SF/So.
11th-Ty Proffitt/PG/So.
12th-Tim Andree/SF/Jr.
13th-Tom Kopko/PG/So.

PG-Tory Jackson (Sr.)
SG-Ben Hansbrough (Jr.)
SF-Scott Martin (So.)
PF-Carlton Scott (So.)
C-Luke Harangody (Sr.)
6th-Jonathan Peoples/SG/Sr.
7th-Tyrone Nash/SG/Jr.
8th-Tim Abromaitis/SF/Jr.
9th-Jack Cooley/C/Fr.
10th-Ty Proffitt/PG/Jr.
11th-Joey Brooks/SF/Fr.
12th-Tim Andree/SF/Sr.
13th-Tom Kopko/PG/Jr.
14th & 15th-Incoming Freshmen

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Post-Spring Depth Chart

The Blue and Gold game was this afternoon, and there is no better time to pick the starters than when it is fresh in your mind. Let's go. I will include the incoming freshmen. Note: All numbers for freshman besides Trevor Robinson and Sean Cwynar are projected.

1. Jimmy Clausen/7/Sophomore
2. Evan Sharpley/13/Senior
3. Dayne Crist/10/Freshman

1. Robert Hughes/33/Sophomore
2. Armando Allen/5/Sophomore
3. James Aldridge/34/Junior
4. Jonas Gray/25/Freshman
5. Barry Gallup Jr./21/Junior

1. Asaph Schwapp/44/Senior
2. Luke Schmidt/32/Junior

1. David Grimes/11/Senior
2. Duval Kamara/18/Sophomore
3. Golden Tate/23/Sophomore
4. Michael Floyd/81/Freshman
5. George West/19/Junior
6. Deion Walker/87/Freshman
7. Richard Jackson/80/Junior
8. Robby Parris/82/Junior
9. DJ Hord/1/Senior
10. John Goodman/9/Freshman

1. Mike Ragone/83/Sophomore
2. Will Yeatman/84/Junior
3. Kyle Rudolph/89/Freshman
4. Joseph Fauria/88/Freshman

1. Paul Duncan/72/Senior
2. Matt Romine/70/Sophomore

1. Mike Turkovich/77/Senior
2. Eric Olsen/55/Senior
3. Lane Clelland/79/Freshman

1. Dan Wenger/51/Junior
2. Tom Bemenderfer/67/Senior
3. Braxton Cave/73/Freshman

1. Chris Stewart/59/Junior
2. Trevor Robinson/78/Freshman
3. Andrew Nuss/76/Sophomore
4. Mike Golic/52/Freshman

1. Sam Young/74/Junior
2. Andrew Nuss/75/Sophomore

1. Pat Kuntz/96/Senior
2. Morrice Richardson/53/Junior
3. Sean Cwynar/98/Freshman
4. John Ryan/90/Junior

1. Ian Williams/95/Sophomore
2. Paddy Mullen/93/Junior
3. Brandon Newman/99/Freshman
4. Hafis Williams/68/Freshman

1. Justin Brown/94/Senior
2. Emeka Nwanko/91/Sophomore
3. Ethan Johnson/92/Freshman

1. Brian Smith/58/Sophomore
2. Scott Smith/41/Junior
3. Kevin Washington/42/Senior
4. Darius Fleming/52/Freshman

1. Maurice Crum/40/Senior
2. Steve Quinn/48/Senior
3. Aaron Nagel/47/Sophomore
4. Anthony McDonald/54/Freshman

1. Toryan Smith/49/Junior
2. Steve Paskorz/50/Sophomore
3. David Posluszny/57/Freshman

1. Kerry Neal/56/Sophomore
2. Kallen Wade/97/Junior
3. Kapron Lewis-Moore/68/Freshman
4. Steve Filer/60/Freshman

1. Terrail Lambert/20/Senior
2. Gary Gray/4/Sophomore
3. Leonard Gordon/24/Junior

1. Darrin Walls/2/Junior
2. Raeshon McNeil/8/Junior
3. Robert Blanton/30/Freshman

1. David Bruton/27/Senior
2. Harrison Smith/22/Sophomore
3. Jashaad Gaines/29/Junior
4. Jamoris Slaughter/26/Freshman

1. Kyle McCarthy/28/Senior
2. Sergio Brown/31/Junior
3. Dan McCarthy/16/Freshman

1. Brandon Walker/14/Sophomore
2. Nate Whitaker/33/Junior
3. Ryan Burkhart/39/Junior

1. Eric Maust/43/Junior
2. Brandon Walker/14/Sophomore

1. Armando Allen/5/Sophomore
2. Golden Tate/23/Sophomore

1. Harrison Smith/22/Sophomore

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Looking Back: Class of 2003 Part 1

The 2003 recruiting class for Notre Dame was one of the best this decade. After Notre Dame won 10 games in Ty Willingham's first year, the recruits flocked to Notre Dame. Many of these players are in the pros or are about to be drafted in the 2008 NFL Draft. This class led Notre Dame to two BCS Bowl games. This class was one of the most productive since Lou Holtz left.

Victor Abiamiri/DE/*****: Victor Abiamiri was one of the most dominant defensive ends in recent Notre Dame history. He improved every year and was the anchor of the Notre Dame defensive line in Weis' first two years. He had 18.5 sacks and 91 tackles in his last two years. Abiamiri was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2nd round of the 2007 NFL Draft. He had 7 tackles and 2 quarterback hurries. Abiamiri has been stuck behind Trent Cole, Juqua Thomas, and Jevon Kearse. He was also being recruited by Maryland, Miami, Michigan, North Carolina, and Stanford.
Chase Anastasio/WR/***: Anastasio was a rarely used receiver for Notre Dame. Most of his action came on special teams. He had 3 catches in four years for Notre Dame and gained 36 yards. He turned down an opportunity to play a fifth year at Notre Dame in 2007, ending his football career. He was the #21 ranked wide receiver for 2003 and was being recruited by Ohio State, Stanford, Virginia, and Virginia Tech.

Nick Borseti/LB/***: Borseti, like Anastasio, never really amounted to anything at Notre Dame. He only had 26 tackles for Notre Dame and never started a game. He was the 58th ranked middle linebacker and was being recruited by Penn State, Syracuse, Virginia, and Boston College.
Joe Brockington/LB/***: Brockington became a major contributor in 2007 in his fifth year for Notre Dame. He made the transition to inside linebacker almost seamlessly, recording 56 tackles and one sack. He had 3 more tackles in 2006, but it is mentionable that he played a different position in 2007 yet experienced almost no dropoff like the majority of the rest of the team. He was not invited to the NFL Combine, but he still could be drafted this coming April. He was also being recruited by Boston College, Georgia Tech, Maryland, and Michigan.
John Carlson/TE/***: Carlson has been a big-time performer for the Irish since Anthony Fasano's departure after the 2005 season. He caught 87 passes for 1006 yards and 7 touchdowns over the last two years. He led Notre Dame in receptions last year and was Clausen's preferred target. Carlson will be drafted in the middle of the 2008 NFL Draft, and he was also being recruited by Minnesota and Stanford.
Isaiah Gardner/CB/***: Gardner is the biggest no-name on this list. He transferred to Maryland after one year at Notre Dame and recorded 147 tackles and 3 interceptions for the Terps. He was also being recruited by Oklahoma, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Michigan, and Michigan State.
Check back later for future parts...

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Coaching Shuffle: Lewis Out, Tenuta In

Notre Dame made some noise this offseason, and it didn't have anything to do with recruiting. Bill Lewis, the long time assistant head coach and defensive backs coach retired and Jon Tenuta, the former Georgia Tech defensive coordinator, was hired in his place. The difference of jobs between Tenuta and Lewis will be Tenuta will most likely take over at linebackers and Corwin Brown will coach the defensive backs, the job he held for the Jets, along with being the defensive coordinator.

All I can say is great job, White, Brown, & Weis. This guy is going to be a linebackers coach when he could be a head coach or defensive coordinator at big time programs. When you can get coaches like that as assistants and position coaches, it's always a good move. However, I would like to put him at defensive backs instead of linebackers. At Ohio State, he developed multiple stars who are now starters in the NFL. It's not like Brown did a bad job with the linebackers last year either. Kerry Neal and Brian Smith were fantastic. Joe Brockington was pretty good and he is now being projected to be drafted. Maurice Crum had some great games (UCLA comes to mind). With all of the youth at linebacker, I would rather have them keep a coach they are familiar with and give the defensive backs, who are mostly going to be seniors and juniors, the new coach.

When players are developing, the least amount of changes can be the best. We've seen what has happened with Alex Smith, QB for the San Francisco 49ers, when he loses his offensive coordinator every year. You don't want the young players having to spend more time on adjusting and less time on fine-tuning their skills.

If Corwin Brown moves to defensive backs coach, I won't be complaining either. He was the defensive backs coach for the New York Jets, and he played as a safety in the 3-4. If he moves, he will be prepared.

To sum it up, I'm not worried. Tenuta has been a great coordinator and assistant head coach throughout his entire career, and he does not have many blemishes on his record. When a coach could have been the head coach at a BCS Conference school (Michigan State) and a defensive coordinator for many schools, it's very good when you can get him as a defensive coach. If Notre Dame can continue to get these great position coaches, the players will continue to blossom. The decisions Charlie has made with his staff have been phenominal. Let's see if they produce on the field.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Pick A Number Between 1 and 99

That's what 23 new Domers will be asked to do in a week when they sign their Letters of Intent. There are, for now, 22 scholarship players and one preferred walk-on with a memorable name. This will change if Milton Knox or Keith Wells get a scholarship offer and commit, but I do not think that will happen in my opinion. So for now, a choice will be made in one week. A decision that will change the outlook on the Notre Dame football team. One that will change the next four years. Their jersey numbers.

Dayne Crist-Crist is a quarterback, so the number will most likely be between 1 and 20. Crist is a big (6-5, 228), talented QB. His high school number is number 10. He's supposed to be the next Brady Quinn. Give him his number. #10.

Jonas Gray-Gray is a running back, so 20 to 49 sounds like the logical choices. However, we've seen Darius Walker and Ryan Grant wear single digits, so he could as well. His high school number is 24, which is taken. I say he follows in the footsteps of Julius Jones. #22.

Michael Floyd-Floyd is the most talented wide receiver to commit to Notre Dame since Randy Moss. Hopefully Floyd stays out of trouble over the next week so he can come to Notre Dame. Since I doubt that will be a problem, He needs a number. He will probably choose a number in the 80s. His current number is 80, but Richard Jackson has his hands on that one. Expectations aren't important. He'll follow in the footsteps of the last Notre Dame Heisman winner. #81.

John Goodman-Goodman is an option quarterback from the Midwest. He will not be a quarterback at Notre Dame, but he will be required to provide big plays. Someone just like that left and had a good Senior Bowl. Take Zibby's number. #9.

Deion Walker-Notre Dame's latest addition is a very fast wide receiver with a 40 time almost at 4.4. He wears number one in high school, but DJ Hord sports that number at Notre Dame. Walker should take a normal wide receiver number. This number is known for being what Alan Page sported. Make it a number that is usually reserved for tight ends. #88.

Kyle Rudolph-Rudolph is big (6-7) and he is fast (4.7). He will be used in the passing game for the next 4 years, and he hopes to follow in the footsteps of great Irish tight ends like Dave Casper, Ken MacAfee, and Anthony Fasano. He is a great receiver. People who bought John Carlson jerseys should be able to inherit a new jersey by graduation. #89.

Joseph Fauria-Fauria is a giant. Rivals has him listed at 6-8, and he is 250 pounds. He will be a great blocker in the Jumbo pack immediately. Notre Dame has two blocking tight ends (Fauria and Mike Ragone) and two receiving tight ends (Rudolph and Will Yeatman). Fauria wears 85 at Carmelite, but that is taken by Sam Vos. Bump it up one. #86.

Trevor Robinson-The firing of Bill Callahan may have been the best move for the Irish. With him getting the boot, Trevor Robinson and Jonas Gray switched their commitments to Notre Dame. Robinson has worn 78 in high school. There won't be much change. #78

Lane Clelland-Lane Clelland is the mystery lineman. He didn't dominate an All-American game like Braxton Cave. He didn't switch commitments like T-Rob. He doesn't have a famous dad like Mike Golic. However, Clelland is a great guard who is extremely physical. He wears 76 in high school. Andrew Nuss wears 76 at Notre Dame, so Clelland will get will get a new number. He should follow in the footsteps of Ryan Harris. #68

Mike Golic, Jr.-When an All-American recruit has junior in his name, you know he has good genes. His uncle, Bob Golic, was one of the best defensive players Notre Dame had in the 70s. Golic can't follow in his relatives' footsteps because Eric Olsen has 55, so Golic should pick up a number close to it. #57

Braxton Cave-Cave dominated the ESPN Under Armour All-American game. With his performance, he gave Dan Wenger some serious competition for the starting center spot. Cave wears 73 at Penn. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. #73

Sean Cwynar-Cwynar will be coming to South Bend early this year. He will be at Notre Dame for spring practices, giving him a real chance to start at defensive end. He wears 77 at Marion Central, but Mike Turkovich has 77 at Notre Dame. Cwynar should just take the only open offensive lineman number in the 70s. #79

Brandon Newman-Newman is huge. He is right around 300 pounds, and he is very strong. He could be one of the most powerful defensive tackles Notre Dame has had in a while. Newman wears 51 at Pleasure Ridge Park, but Dan Wenger has that one. Newman is a big man, so he needs a big number. #99

Hafis Williams-Williams may have to step up in 2008. Ian Williams is the only returning nose tackle, so Williams may be called on to make big plays. He wears 79 at Elizabeth, but Sean Cwynar already has that. Williams should follow Newman's route. #98

Ethan Johnson-Johnson is a very athletic defensive end. He could be the X-factor on this defense if he can come in and make big plays like Trevor Laws did. He wears 9 at Lincoln. John Goodman will take that number, so he can take a defensive lineman's number. #92

Steve Filer-Filer is a big-time local recruit. He goes to Mount Carmel High School, where he wears 44. Asaph Schwapp has that one, so he can go up a bit. #46

Anthony McDonald-Not much will change with Anthony McDonald. He sticks together with his teammate Dayne Crist. His school will have the same name. He will even have the same number. #54

Darius Fleming-Fleming could be breaking a lot of sack-related records by the end of his time at Notre Dame. Fleming is built perfectly for the pass rushing outside linebackers in the 3-4. He may have to improve at pass coverage, but that shouldn't be a big issue this year. He wears 90 at St. Rita, but that number is called for. He should go with a more linebacker-friendly number. #52

David Posluszny-The younger Posluszny definitely has good genes, much like Mike Golic and Dan McCarthy, two other 2008 recruits. Hopefully he inherited his brother's run stopping ability. He is a great pass defender, which may be a major asset for this team. He wears 31 at Hopewell, but that number is not available. Try higher. #37

Dan McCarthy-It's going to be a brotherly reunion at Notre Dame when Dan plays with his brother Kyle. However, Dan has had multiple injuries this year, and he will most likely get a redshirt. However, he still gets a jersey number. He may want to keep his old one (15), which is a wise decision. #15

Jamoris Slaughter-Slaughter, like McCarthy, has had injury problems. His knee should be fixed come summer, but he may not play next year, especially with all of the returning corners. However, he still needs a number. His number 8 is taken, so he should settle with a close number. #16

Robert Blanton-Blanton has the best chance out of any secondary player in this class. He is a great athlete, and he may have a chance to get some playing time in front of Gary Gray to get in the dime position. He shouldn't change much, including his number. #12

Now here is the preferred walk-on.

Some of you might know who it is.

Some of you may not.

He has a famous dad who was involved with a Notre Dame championship team.

He had a great pro career and his jersey is common among Notre Dame fans.

Here it is.

*drum roll*

Nate Montana-Another Montana. That's awesome. Now, he has to take his dad's number. It has to be done. #3

That would be the coolest thing ever for the son of the most famous Notre Dame sports player to wear his dad's number. Expectations normally don't apply to preferred walk-ons, so there may not be much pressure on him to recreate what his dad did. Either way, he HAS to choose this number.