Kapron Lewis Moore

2011 in 100 words… Kapron Lewis-Moore

2 Comments

The seventh of twelve previews analyzing a dozen players essential to the Irish making a BCS run next season. For more, check the previews of Braxston Cave, Sean Cwynar, Jonas Gray, Trevor Robinson, Theo Riddick and Steve Filer.

Player Overview:

It was two seasons ago when a young sophomore who sat out the entire 2008 season seized a starting defensive end job. While Kapron Lewis Moore was undoubtedly raw, he led all Irish defensive linemen with 46 tackles, finishing sixth on the team, including seven tackles for loss.

KLM followed up his debut season with his 2010 effort, starting 13 games, finishing fourth on the team with 62 tackles. His two sacks weren’t enough to call him a disruptive force in the passing game, but his ability to be around the football continued to shine.

2010 Season:

In many ways, Lewis-Moore encapsulated the progression of the Irish defense. While he certainly grew as a football player, there is still plenty of room for improvement. Midway through last season, head coach Brian Kelly talked about that development process.

“He’s clearly a young man that has had to develop physically,” Kelly said. “He came on campus at 215-220 pounds in that range, and he’s up there upwards of 280 pounds. He’s getting used to his body, he really is. He’s carrying a lot of cargo if you will and he’s really becoming a lot more comfortable with that. So that growth and development is really changing a physique from what it was to where it is today, because he possess a lot of athletic ability and we are seeing that each and every week.”

Starting with the Navy game, Lewis-Moore picked up his productivity, having games of seven and eight tackles, while only having less than four tackles against Tulsa. His consistent ability to anchor a position that absolutely needed productive performances out of he and Ethan Johnson was a huge break for defensive coordinator Bob Diaco.

100 word preview for Kapron Lewis-Moore in 2011:

Steady but not spectacular certainly was acceptable in 2010, but the bar for the 2011 Irish defense has been raised. After two seasons of starting at defensive end, it’s time for Lewis-Moore to excel, getting more pressure on the quarterback and wreaking havoc in the run game. KLM’s athletic ability and impressive size give him all the tools needed for success, and as Bob Diaco’s system continues to evolve, Lewis-Moore will be asked to grow with it. Thanks to an infusion of talent at the position, KLM should benefit from depth that’ll allow him to stay fresh and more productive.

Importance in 2011:

The Irish have the opportunity to have one of the strongest defensive lines in the post-Holtz era, with Ethan Johnson also poised to have a monster season. With the emergence of Kona Schwenke and the ability for Aaron Lynch to provide a pass-rushing spark, the Irish front could be a dominating unit.

Five Irish players sign UFA contracts

Matthias Farley
Leave a comment

Notre Dame had seven players selected in the 2016 NFL Draft, trailing only Ohio State, Clemson and UCLA on the weekend tally. But after the draft finished, the Irish had five more players get their shot at playing on Sundays.

Chris Brown signed with the Dallas Cowboys. Romeo Okwara will begin his career with the New York Giants. Matthias Farley and Amir Carlisle signed contracts with the Arizona Cardinal. Elijah Shumate agreed to a contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

After missing two seasons, Ishaq Williams will be at Giants rookie camp next weekend as well, working as a tryout player. Expect Jarrett Grace to receive similar opportunities.

Count me among those that thought both Brown and Okwara would hear their names called. Brown’s senior season, not to mention his intriguing measureables, had some projecting him as early as the fifth round.

Okwara, still 20 years old and fresh off leading Notre Dame in sacks in back-to-back seasons, intrigued a lot of teams with his ability to play both defensive end and outside linebacker. He’ll get a chance to make the Giants—the team didn’t draft a defensive end after selecting just one last year, and they’re in desperate need of pass rushers.

Both Shumate and Farley feel like contenders to earn a spot on rosters, both because of their versatility and special teams skills. Shumate played nickel back as a freshman and improved greatly at safety during 2015. Farley bounced around everywhere and was Notre Dame’s special teams captain.

Carlisle might fit a similar mold. He played running back, receiver and returned kicks and punts throughout his college career. With a 4.4 during Notre Dame’s Pro Day, he likely showed the Cardinals enough to take a shot, and now he’ll join an offense with Michael Floyd and Troy Niklas.

 

Robertson picks Cal over Notre Dame, UGA

Demetris Robertson
1 Comment

Demetris Robertson‘s decision wasn’t trending in Notre Dame’s direction. But those that expected the Savannah star athlete to pick the in-state Bulldogs were in for a surprise when Robertson chose Cal on Sunday afternoon.

Notre Dame’s pursuit of the five-star athlete, recruited to play outside receiver and hopefully replace Will Fuller, likely ended Sunday afternoon with Robertson making the surprise decision to take his substantial talents to Berkeley. And give credit to Robertson for doing what he said all along—picking a school that’ll give him the chance to earn an exceptional education and likely contribute from Day One.

“I am excited to take my talents to the University of California, Berkeley. The first reason is that the education was a big part of my decision. I wanted to keep that foundation,” Robertson said, per CFT. “When I went there, it felt like home. Me and the coaching staff have a great relationship. That’s where I felt were the best of all things for me.”

Adding one final twist in all of this is that Robertson has no letter-of-intent to sign. Because he’s blown three months through Signing Day, Robertson merely enrolls at a college when the time comes. That means until then, Kirby Smart and the Georgia staff will continue to sell Robertson on staying home and helping the Dawgs rebuild. Smart visited with Robertson Saturday night and had multiple assistant coaches at his track meet this weekend.

Summer school begins in June for Notre Dame. Their freshman receiving class looks complete with early enrollee Kevin Stepherson and soon-to-arrive pass-catchers Javon McKinley and Chase Claypool.

Sheldon Day drafted in 4th round by Jaguars

North Carolina v Notre Dame
Getty
4 Comments

Former Notre Dame captain Sheldon Day didn’t have to wait long on Saturday to hear his name called. The Indianapolis native, All-American, and the Irish’s two-time defensive lineman of the year was pick number 103, the fourth pick of the fourth round on Saturday afternoon.

Day was the seventh Irish player drafted, following first rounders Ronnie Stanley and Will Fuller, second round selections Jaylon Smith and Nick Martin, and third rounders KeiVarae Russell and C.J. Prosise.

Day has a chance to contribute as he joins the 24th-ranked defense in the league. Joining a draft class heavy on defensive players—Jalen Ramsey, Myles Jack and Yannick Ngakoue already picked ahead of him—the front seven will also include last year’s No. 3 overall pick Dante Fowler, who missed the entire season with a knee injury.

Scouted by the Jaguars at the Senior Bowl, Day doesn’t necessarily have the size to be a traditional defensive tackle. But under Gus Bradley’s attacking system (Bradley coordinated the Seahawks defense for four seasons), Day will find a niche and a role in a young defense that’s seen a heavy investment the past two years.

Smith, Martin, Russell and Prosise all drafted Friday night

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - SEPTEMBER 13: William Fuller #7 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and Nick Martin #72 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish celebrate a touchdown during the game against the Purdue Boilermakers at Lucas Oil Stadium on September 13, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
5 Comments

Jaylon Smith, Nick Martin, KeiVarae Russell and C.J. Prosise were all selected on Friday, with four Irish teammates taken on the second night of the NFL Draft. As mentioned, Smith came off the board at pick 34, with the Cowboys gambling on the injured knee of the Butkus Award winner. Nick Martin was selected at pick 50, joining former teammate Will Fuller in Houston.

The third round saw Russell and Prosise come off the board, with Kansas City jumping on the confident cornerback and the Seahawks taking Notre Dame’s breakout running back. It capped off a huge night for the Irish with Sheldon Day, one of the more productive football players in college football, still on the board for teams to pick.

Here’s a smattering of instant reactions from the immediate aftermath.