Notre Dame’s Weighty Matters
The start of spring drills at Notre Dame this Thursday generally evokes another curiosity: Who made the most gains or losses during the seven-week winter strength and conditioning program?
Overall, there is not much dramatic fluctuation in the numbers from what was listed in the fall, and figures such as bench presses, body fat, etc., are no longer made public like they were decades ago.
One group where data is a little more tangible is the freshmen who enroll in January. Here were the before and after numbers listed among the eight early enrollees:
Quarterback Drew Pyne
Before: 6-0, 181
After: 5-11½, 194
Wide Receiver Jay Brunelle
Before: 6-1½, 201
After: 6-1 1/8, 196
Brunelle underwent shoulder surgery this winter.
Receiver Xavier Watts
Before: 5-11, 185
After: 5-11¾, 195
Defensive End Jordan Botelho
Before: 6-4, 226
After: 6-2½, 248
Defensive End Alexander Ehrensberger
Before: 6-6½, 239
After: 6-6 7/8, 247
Defensive Tackle Rylie Mills
Before: 6-4½, 250
After: 6-5 1/8, 259
Cornerback Ramon Henderson
Before: 6-3, 180
After: 6-1, 182
Cornerback Caleb Offord
Before: 6-1, 170
After: 6-1, 184
Meanwhile, the two graduate transfers who enrolled in January also partook in the winter strength and conditioning program:
Wide Receiver Ben Skowronek (Northwestern)
Before: 6-4, 215
After: 6-2 7/8, 224
Safety Isaiah Pryor (Ohio State)
Before: 6-2, 200
After: 6-1½, 199
Among the current Notre Dame players who were on the 2019 roster, here were the most notable gains or losses per position group.
Top Gain: The aforementioned Pyne picked up 13 pounds.
Top Loss: Ian Book (6-0 1/8) shed six pounds (now 206) while Brendon Clark at 6-1 5/8 lost five to get to 212.
Top Gain: Nothing of note as at 6-0¾, 220, Jafar Armstrong remained the biggest back by 13 pounds.
Top Loss: Junior C’Bo Flemister subtracted five pounds and is now at 5-11¼, 195.
Top Gain: Watts picked up the 10 pounds as noted, while Skowronek added nine.
Top Loss: Junior boundary man Micah Jones remained listed at 6-4½, but is down nine pounds to 210. Classmate Lawrence Keys III in the slot remains the smallest at 5-10 3/8, 173.
Top Gain: Senior Brock Wright put on four pounds and is now 6-4½, 250, the team’s largest man at the position.
Top Loss: Junior Tommy Tremble shed two pounds and is 6-3¼, 233.
Top Gain: A pair of sophomores took top honors, mainly because they literally had the most to gain. Center Zeke Correll was 6-3, 270 last year but is now at 6-3, 290, while tackle Andrew Kristofic at 6-5¼ added 12 pounds to now be 292.
Out this spring because of a surgically repaired fractured foot, senior left guard Aaron Banks added 10 pounds and is now the largest man on the entire team at 335 pounds on his 6-5¾ frame.
Top Loss:The second largest member on the team is Banks’ fellow guard Tommy Kraemer at 317, down two pounds from last season.
Top Gain: The freshmen Ehrensberger and Mills have been noted, while sophomore ends NaNa Osafo Mensah (6-3 1/8, 249) put on eight pounds and Isaiah Foskey added five more and is now 6-5, 255.
Top Loss: Senior end Kofi Wardlow is down four pounds at 6-2¼, 240.
Top Gain: Sophomore Marist Liufau is up eight pounds at 6-2¼, 221, and classmate Osita Ekwonu (6-0¾, 236) gained six.
Top Loss: Juniors Jack Lamb, recovering from a hip injury, and Bo Bauer shed five pounds apiece. Lamb is now listed at 6-3¾, 228 and Bauer 6-2¾ 225.
Junior Shayne Simon, who won’t be back in action until August because of surgery on his patella, subtracted four pounds and is 6-2¾, 228.
Top Gain: Offord’s 14 pounds are quite the pickup at this position, but junior TaRiq Bracy also put on 10 pounds and is 5-10 1/8, 180.
Top Loss: Sophomore Cam Hart, who arrived as a receiver prospect, shed three pounds but is still the largest corner at 6-2½, 205.
Top Gain: Sophomores Kyle Hamilton (6-4, 216) and Litchfield Ajavon (6-0 1/8, 198) plus junior Houston Griffith (5-11¾, 198) accumulated six pounds apiece.
Top Loss: Although he worked primarily at corner, sophomore K.J. Wallace also did some drills at safety, and is down six pounds to 5-10¼, 185.