After doing my best to glean as much information out of three minutes of practice footage, we’re back at it with another bullet-point edition of UND.com’s wonderful practice reports. After giving us a brief overview of some of the obvious storylines this spring, Jack “Take the Charge” Nolan breaks down the linebackers, giving us a nice look at Manti Te’o’s gang, and defensive coordinator turned associate head coach Bob Diaco, whose hair is already having an outstanding spring season.
As we did last time, let’s run through this video and point out the things that may or may not interest you:
- 0:15 — As Jack Nolan models another wonderful Adidas fleece, I noticed the weather in South Bend should be a little over 10 degrees warmer than the weather in Los Angeles, where showers are also expected. In other news, blue-chip running back Ty Isaac is in Los Angeles visiting USC this weekend.
- 0:50 — Say what you will about fifth-year senior Mike Golic, but he’s shown good leadership. That’s him breaking down the team with their ND Football jump.
- 1:02 — In the first seconds of the linebacker preview, you see the exact difference between Dan Fox and Carlo Calabrese. Fox looks comfortable in a coverage drill. Calabrese not as much.
- 1:24 — That’s Danny (or now Dan?) Spond getting Bob Diaco‘s heart pumping with proper “block destruction” technique. I swung and missed on my Spond predictions last year, but a few more two-second clips and he’ll get me back on his bandwagon.
- 1:30 — Ishaq Williams looks really impressive in shorts. Still learning, but you can’t teach the size and athleticism he has.
- 1:50 — After seeing Brian Kelly get into the QB race, we get Diaco’s submission. Is it possible that Diaco has shot forward in time from the late 50s, where he and Don Draper swam together at the athletic club?
- 2:06 — I really think the coaching staff did a good job getting preferred walk-on Joe Schmidt to Notre Dame. He’s lacking elite size, but he’s the kind of player that helps you win football games. Plus, he’s from a really good Orange County high school program. That can’t hurt.
- 2:11 — Manti Te’o looks pretty good in coverage drills. Carlo, not as much. Fox, the best of the group.
- 2:40 — Kendall Moore won’t make a living playing in coverage. But I’ve got a feeling that when Te’o graduates it’ll be Moore that steps in and makes plays immediately. He’s going to be a good one, just needs to stay patient.
- 2:47 — For a converted defensive lineman, Justin Utupo looks pretty good in coverage. Another guy I think could end up having a nice career.
- 3:20 — Nice to at least get a look at Jarrett Grace, Ben Councell, and Anthony Rabasa.
- 3:30 — Nolan mentions the defense has gotten better in each of the last two seasons. This year, they’ve got to get some turnovers. That’s been the big difference.
- 4:55 — Quick, don’t blink or you’ll miss ones vs. ones. That’s Theo Riddick looking mighty comfortable taking a handoff from Tommy Rees. That’s the type of explosion you didn’t see when he was getting run down by a Navy defensive back.
- 5:02 — Welcome to college football, Jarrett Grace. See that tight end that just ran by you down the seam? That’s Tyler Eifert. You may want to keep an eye on him, and maybe even get an autograph later.
There should be plenty more highlights this weekend, when the Irish put on gear for the first time, in front of an elite crew of junior recruits no less. Saturday’s workout will likely give us a look in the trenches, where the right side of the offensive line is being rebuilt.