Notre Dame Spring Practice Clips: Takeaways And Observations
Ordinarily, Notre Dame’s first spring practice would be completely open.
Instead, as the COVID times continue to keep media away from viewing, we’re left to hyper-analyze three-minutes of practice video the team provided.
It’s generally not wise to read too much into these, but there are still things to learn about who’s lining up where and what the first- and second-team units look like at this stage. Head coach Brian Kelly offered some hints in his press conference. It’s also safe to assume returning starters are first-team players.
Here are some takeaways from watching the clips in the video above from BlueandGold.com.
• As Kelly indicated would be the case, sophomore quarterback Drew Pyne took some snaps with the first-team offense. The first play of the video of him throwing to senior wide receiver Joe Wilkins Jr. with sophomore Tosh Baker at left tackle.
• At 50 seconds, the second-team line is clearly visible. From left to right: Freshman Blake Fisher, freshman Rocco Spindler, junior Andrew Kristofic, junior Quinn Carroll and sophomore Michael Carmody. It’s clearly the second team because Kelly indicated Saturday Fisher and Spindler were working with that unit. Fifth-year senior Jack Coan is the quarterback, with senior running back C’Bo Flemister flanking him. Coan completes a pass to sophomore wide receiver Xavier Watts.
• The one-minute mark has freshman quarterback Tyler Buchner throwing one-on-ones. His pass to sophomore wide receiver Jay Brunelle is broken up by sophomore cornerback Ramon Henderson. Word is both have worked at the boundary spot at their respective positions.
• At 2:13, junior running back Kyren Williams takes a handoff from Pyne. His blockers are Baker (presumably at left tackle), fifth-year senior guard Dillon Gibbons, junior center Zeke Correll, senior guard John Dirksen and fifth-year senior right tackle Josh Lugg. That was Saturday’s first-team offensive line. On the first-team defense, fifth-year senior linebacker Drew White, junior defensive end Isaiah Foskey, fifth-year senior defensive lineman Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa, junior linebacker Jack Kiser, junior linebacker Marist Liufau and senior safety DJ Brown are visible.
• The following clip shows Coan completing a pass to receiver Jordan Johnson with defensive end Jordan Botelho barreling down on Coan.
• At 2:25, Coan is taking first-team reps with only receivers and defensive backs and completes a pass to sophomore tight end Michael Mayer with Kiser trailing him in coverage, followed by senior safety Houston Griffith undercutting and breaking up a Coan throw intended for Mayer with sophomore corner Clarence Lewis in the area.
• Buchner completes a seven-on-seven throw at 2:55 to Watts. Junior linebacker JD Bertrand and junior safety Litchfield Ajavon are visible.
• At 3:03, senior defensive end Justin Ademilola, sophomore defensive tackle Rylie Mills and fifth-year senior linebacker Isaiah Pryor are repping against the first-team line. The play is a Coan completion to Mayer with White and Brown in the vicinity, followed by a completion to fifth-year senior slot receiver Avery Davis.
• The 3:19 mark is Tagovailoa-Amosa playing defensive end, a move Kelly revealed in his post-practice press conference.
• Botelho beats Lugg and sophomore running back Chris Tyree off the edge for a free run at Coan. Mills and junior Howard Cross III are next to him on the defensive line. Coan’s throw to Wilkins is broken up by junior corner Cam Hart or Brown, with Liufau nearby.
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