Skip to content

Eifert wins Mackey, Awards pile up for the Irish

Dec 5, 2012, 3:48 PM EDT

Kapron Lewis-Moore, Manti Te'o, Tyler Eifert, Zack Martin

Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert has won the John Mackey Award, the first Irish player to be honored as college football’s top tight end.

For Eifert, the award comes a year after he led the nation in receptions at the position and was statistically the most deserving candidate. Returning for his senior season, Eifert’s production slipped as the offense shifted quarterbacks to Everett Golson, but the senior captain did more than just catch passes for the No. 1 team in the nation, working as a key blocker and upping his NFL Draft stock with a complete and dominating senior season.

On the year, Eifert had 44 receptions for 624 yards and four touchdowns. He broke just about every tight end record in the Notre Dame record books, surpassing former Irish great Ken MacAfee along the way. Eifert beat out Stanford’s Zach Ertz and Washington’s Austin Seferian-Jenkins for the coveted award.


In other award news, Manti Te’o continues his kudos march through New York, adding the Nagurski Award to the Butkus Award he received earlier in the week. Awarded to the nation’s top defensive player, the Bronko Nagurski Award is one of the most coveted in all of college football.

Te’o beat out fellow finalists Jadeveon Clowney, the star defensive end from South Carolina, Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones, Alabama cornerback Dee Millner and Florida State defensive end Bjoern Werner.

The awards aren’t likely to stop for Te’o. While he finished behind Alabama center Barrett Jones for the Campbell Trophy as the nation’s top scholar-athlete, Te’o was named CBS Sports’ defensive player of the year, headlining the award-winners by the networks’ All-American team, where Te’o was a first-team linebacker.

Interestingly enough, Stephon Tuitt joined Te’o on that first team, categorized as a defensive tackle, even though Tuitt lines up predominantly at end for the Irish in their 3-4 fronts. Tuitt’s inclusion on the first team bumped Louis Nix to CBS’s third team All-American squad, where the stout nose guard gets awarded for a tremendous season.

While no offensive players from the Irish made the first team, both Tyler Eifert and Braxston Cave were named to the second team offense.


  1. kiopta1 - Dec 5, 2012 at 4:01 PM

    Now just win the big team award.


    • 808raiderinparadise - Dec 5, 2012 at 6:57 PM

      Thats true, I want to see ND win it all so bad.

      It will be such a hard game to win, but I know this team has some special abilities when doubted.

      So hard to imagine how ND will be most effective offensively, defensively and ST wise.

      I agree that the key is to rattle McCarron. Need force him to make bad throws and turnovers.

      • papadec - Dec 6, 2012 at 1:51 AM

        808 – the more I think about the NC game – the more I think it will come down to who wins the turnover battle.

      • 808raiderinparadise - Dec 6, 2012 at 2:26 PM


        Clearly that and whoever runs the ball more effectively.

        90% of the time turnovers and run game will dictate winner.

  2. ndirish10 - Dec 5, 2012 at 4:43 PM

    Congratulations to Eifert! Continued congratulations to HeIsManti!! Only question (rhetorical), how does Eifert win the Best Tight-End in the country award but get 2nd team All-American? Go figure. GO IRISH!!!

    • fighting69th - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:42 AM

      That is what i’m talking about! It’s all political. I swear.

  3. surly1n1nd1anapol1s - Dec 5, 2012 at 6:42 PM

    Don’t do anything you’d regret. Messing with Notre Dame football is a bad idea.

    • ndirish10 - Dec 5, 2012 at 6:59 PM

      Wow! Really?!

  4. mtflsmitty - Dec 5, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    10, I’m with you. Eifert not making first team is a joke. But it’s another sign of how wooed the CFB world is by sizzle, rather than the steak. Incredibly athletic receiver, AND the best blocker. Eifert will be the #1 TE drafted in the NFL. Those boys know what’s up.

    • joeymagarac - Dec 5, 2012 at 9:38 PM

      I was with you until the part about the “boys” in the NFL knowing what’s up. Two words: JaMarcus Russell. Two more: Ryan Leaf. NFL often gets it right but not always.

  5. atlirish1013 - Dec 5, 2012 at 8:17 PM

    Anyone else see the news that Cal hired Dykes from La Tech! Looks more and more like seƱor Diaco will be the DC for another year.

    Roll Tide!
    Round the bowl
    And down the hole!

    • dickasman - Dec 6, 2012 at 1:38 AM

      Boy that’s pathetic….la tech? Is Kevin white ad’ing at Cal now? We still have Wisconsin to go. Did ya hear good ol Barry is coming outta retirement to coach the bowl game, lol! Ball left, Ball middle, Ball right, punt!

      • papadec - Dec 6, 2012 at 1:58 AM

        dickas – yeah – supposedly the team captains went to Barry – and asked him to coach the team in the Rose Bowl. Gotta be kiddin’ me – not the D or O coordinator? Sometimes, I just sit here, read some of the stuff on espn (or watch it), and shake my head side-to-side.

  6. irishdodger - Dec 5, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    The All American selections are typically based purely on stats. Eifert showed he was the more complete TE by improving his blocking. I believe he was a 3-star in HS & grew up a Purdue fan. Luckily for ND, he chose the Irish & will end up being better than his 4 & 5 star predecessors in Fasano, Carlson & Rudolph.

    • dickasman - Dec 6, 2012 at 1:39 AM

      Gotta hand it to him. He had real bad back, I didn’t think he’d be able to play let alone 1st round draft pick.

  7. norcalirish - Dec 6, 2012 at 3:55 AM

    Papa—turnovers and kicking.

  8. kiopta1 - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:13 AM

    Manti and the Lombardi.

  9. goirishgo - Dec 6, 2012 at 1:49 PM

    Papa – did your cardiologist tell you to cut back on red meat, butter and Irish football?

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!