Notre Dame 2021 Spring Roster Overview
When Notre Dame begins spring drills this Saturday, a total of 98 players will be on the roster, although some might not be able to partake in drills while on the mend from surgeries.
There are 76 scholarship players and 22 walk-ons among that total. Thirteen more scholarship players will be added in June when the remaining incoming freshmen enroll.
Among the 76 scholarship players this spring, 36 are on offense, 37 on defense and three on special teams. No updated weight listings were provided.
The class year demarcation among the 76 on scholarship are as follows:
Nine Graduate Students
At least seven are returning or projected starters:
• Wisconsin graduate transfer quarterback Jack Coan, who had 18 career starts with the Badgers (all 14 in 2019).
• Offensive lineman Josh Lugg, whose eight career starts (most at right tackle) are the second most to senior Jarrett Patterson along the front.
• Slot receiver Avery Davis, whose 24 receptions last year were by far the most among the returning wideouts (no one else had more than seven).
• Defensive linemen Kurt Hinish and Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa, whose 25 and 21 career starts rank first and tied for third, respectively, among all players on offense or defense.
• Mike linebacker Drew White, who is second in career starts (24), and has the most career tackles (144) and stops for lost yardage (17) among returning players.
• Kicker Jonathan Doerer, who has converted 33 of 44 field goal attempts in his career, which puts him on pace for the second-highest percentage (75.0) ever by an Irish kicker with at least 50 attempts, behind predecessor Justin Yoon (80.8).
Rounding out the fifth-year figures are guard Dillan Gibbons, who started in the regular-season finale versus Syracuse last season, and 2020 Ohio State graduate transfer Isaiah Pryor.
Pryor started on all four special teams last year and, after arriving as a safety, backed up Butkus Award winner Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah at rover when Paul Moala was lost for the season in early October because of an Achilles injury. This spring, Pryor is again listed as a “DB.”
This class originally had 27 players sign with the Fighting Irish.
Headlining the group is two-year starting center Patterson, whose foot surgery in November is expected to sideline him this spring. That opens up the possibility of him moving to another position if junior Zeke Correll excels in his place at center and is deemed by the staff as one of the five best players on the unit.
There are four vacancies along the line, and Patterson originally enrolled as a left tackle, where he played as a freshman.
The position group from this class that especially will be one to watch for some emergence is wide receiver with the quartet of former top-100 recruit Kevin Austin Jr., speedster Braden Lenzy, Lawrence Keys III and Joe Wilkins Jr. Injuries and other setbacks have continuously hampered their progress.
Notre Dame has had at least one junior enter the NFL Draft each of the past six years, most recently tight end Tommy Tremble.
Projected next in line are All-American safety Kyle Hamilton and possibly running back Kyren Williams, who rushed for 1,125 yards last season and also snared 35 passes.
Adding more star power is vyper end Isaiah Foskey, who likely possesses the highest NFL ceiling among the current Irish defensive linemen and now has an opportunity to be a full-time starter because four defensive ends from the past two years have gone on to the next level.
Will linebackers Marist Liufau and Jack Kiser also are vying for starting roles, and Kiser has cross-trained at rover.
Tight end Michael Mayer tied for the team lead in receptions (42) last season, the first freshman to achieve that feat at Notre Dame, and he has all the makings to already be one of the nation’s best at his position.
Cornerback Clarence Lewis surprisingly took over as the starting field corner in 2020 and finished second in passes broken up with seven.
Game-breaker Chris Tyree finished with the seventh-most rushing yards by an Irish freshman (496 at 6.8 yards per carry), but inquiring minds will be especially curious about the progress of five-star receiver Jordan Johnson, who played only 26 snaps in mop-up duty last season.
14 Freshman Early Enrollees
Here are the jersey numbers issued to this group that now holds the school record for most to enroll in the spring semester (a practice that began in 2006).
Ron Powlus III — 11
Tyler Buchner — 12
Lorenzo Styles Jr. — 21
Sophomore wideout Xavier Watts wore 21 last year, but is now 82.
Cane Berrong — 80
Mitchell Evans — 88
Rocco Spindler — 50
Blake Fisher — 54
Caleb Johnson — 72
Devin Aupiu — 44
Will Schweitzer — 48
Gabe Rubio — 97
Ryan Barnes — 15
Justin Walters — 20
Philip Riley — 25
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