Jul 2, 2013, 11:48 AM EDT
In one of the recruiting game’s biggest (and newest) stages, Notre Dame running back prospect Elijah Hood put on a show. The five-star Irish commitment was one of the ten finalist selected for the Nike SPARQ finals, televised on ESPNU on Monday night.
Matched up with his prodigious game tape, Hood’s measureables fit the bill when you’re looking for an elite running back with both power and speed.
At six-foot, 221 pounds, Hood put up a more than impressive 4.48 40-yard dash, putting to rest any questions on his top end speed with a blazing electronically timed sprint. With a 36.3-inch vertical leap, Hood showed some explosiveness, and his strength was on display in the “Powerball” segment, where he essentially kneeling chess-passed a weighted medicine ball 42.5 feet.
The seven-on-seven portion of the combine continues today, with several Irish prospects or commitments competing. Let’s run through a few notable names.
DeShone Kizer: The Irish quarterback commitment performed in the Elite 11 competition as well as The Opening. Kizer measured in at 6-foot-4.5, 216-pounds, running a 4.96 forty.
IrishSportsDaily.com caught up with Trent Dilfer, who evaluated Kizer’s camp session, raving about the person and giving constructive criticism about the player.
“DeShone is off the charts in the subjective stuff; the competitive stuff, the trainability,” Dilfer said after Sunday’s session.
“He is struggling with some mechanics that we tried to fix in Columbus (at the Nike Football Training Camp). We have the tools to fix it, he’s just not feeling it yet.”
Dilfer is planning to sit down with Kizer and show him what he’s talking about mechanically on film. The former NFL quarterback believes the source of Kizer’s mechanical flaws is actually a positive.
“It’s because he’s an all-sport athlete, which I love by the way,” said Dilfer. “I love the fact that Notre Dame gets a guy that’s going to get so much better once he gets this cleaned up. He’d be the first to tell you that he’s been inconsistent.”
Justin Brent: It was a very good day for Brent, who was one of the top receivers at The Opening. Brent measured in at 6-1, 197 pounds, and ran a 4.52 forty. When assessing standouts from Day One, 247Sports.com said this about Brent, their No. 1 rated receiver for the day:
A rangy, wiry wide receiver, Brent flashed all afternoon on Monday with his ability to stab the football with his hands. He also showed suddenness and separating ability upfield and the size to finish over smaller defenders.
All reports from Day One have Brent as the cream of the wide receiving crop, a good sign for the very early Irish commitment and another data-point that suggests the early evaluation tools of the Irish coaching staff are on point.
Sep 5, 2015, 7:00 AM EDT
Game day is here. And for those who won’t be in Notre Dame Stadium on Saturday night, here are all the details you’ll need to make sure you catch all the great coverage NBC has to offer, even if you can’t be parked on the couch in front of the TV.
Sep 4, 2015, 2:16 AM EDT
For all the grand plans on the horizon for Notre Dame’s most promising football team in a decade, none of them can materialize if Saturday goes haywire. So while the Fighting Irish have a team filled with depth, experience and talented playmakers as Texas is mid-renovation in Charlie Strong’s second season, all the magazine covers and preseason All-Americans in the world won’t help once the Irish kickoff at 7:42 on Saturday evening.
Sep 3, 2015, 6:55 PM EDT
The pieces are in place for Notre Dame’s secondary to be great. Led by returning cornerback KeiVarae Russell and armed with depth at every starting position, first-year position coach Todd Lyght has considerable talent to work with.
Sep 2, 2015, 4:53 PM EDT
When Everett Golson pulled the chute and headed south to Tallahassee, Notre Dame’s quarterback competition quickly cleared up. This is Malik Zaire’s football team.
Sep 2, 2015, 3:27 PM EDT
So who’s calling the plays? That was one of the main questions still unanswered heading into the season’s opening game, and when head coach Brian Kelly was asked about it, he was staying mum.
Sep 2, 2015, 9:30 AM EDT
Game week is finally here. After nearly nine months—spent wondering about transfers, speculating upon returns and predicting what’ll happen come September—we finally get to see a football game.
Sep 1, 2015, 2:23 PM EDT
With a strong recruiting surge, some roster shuffling and some good luck (and hard work) in the health department, Notre Dame’s linebacking corps was rebuilt remarkably quickly. A season after question marks were everywhere, the Irish have a linebacking group that is among the fastest and most athletic we’ve seen in a very long time.
Sep 1, 2015, 12:56 PM EDT
Brian Kelly released his first official depth chart on Tuesday. Let’s take a look at some of moves and surprises heading into the Texas game.
Aug 31, 2015, 4:12 PM EDT
Notre Dame’s wide receiving depth chart features talent at just about every level. Starting with All-American candidate and sophomore record-setter Will Fuller and working down to freshmen like Equanimeous St. Brown and C.J. Sanders, top to bottom this is the most exciting set of playmakers the Irish have had at the position in, maybe—ever?
Aug 31, 2015, 11:37 AM EDT
Let’s get the rest of the mailbag finished off so we can concentrate on game week. (Feels really good to type that sentence.) Thanks again for some great questions.
Aug 30, 2015, 3:34 PM EDT
There are a ton of good questions to get to so this will roll out in multiple parts. Many thanks for the thoughtful work. (And some nice examples of brevity.)
Aug 29, 2015, 3:19 PM EDT
After a long line of starters with plenty of experience, Notre Dame’s tight ends all but start over in 2015. Scott Booker’s position group comes in with all sorts of intriguing traits. Unfortunately, none of those are experience.
Aug 28, 2015, 2:50 PM EDT
Brian Kelly was on the Dan Patrick Show this morning and the Irish head coach got his last weekend without a game started by chatting it up with the popular radio host. While Kelly didn’t make any headlines in the interview, he did conduct it from his desk with a Showtime crew hanging a boom mic over his head, part of life with a documentary film crew following him around.
Aug 28, 2015, 1:04 PM EDT
Just about everybody expects Harry Hiestand’s offensive line to be a dominant unit. But after months of preseason hype, they now need to prove they can do it.
Aug 27, 2015, 8:48 PM EDT
Ishaq Williams’ college football career is over. Notre Dame’s exiled defensive end, who sat out last season as part of a two-semester suspension for his role in the “frozen five” academic dishonesty investigation, has lost his NCAA appeal for reinstatement. Brian Kelly shared the news on Thursday after practice
Aug 27, 2015, 8:25 PM EDT
The votes are in and Notre Dame’s football team will be captained by five players. Graduate students Matthias Farley, Nick Martin and Joe Schmidt will be joined by senior Sheldon Day and junior Jaylon Smith as the captains of the 2015 Irish.
Aug 27, 2015, 12:34 PM EDT
It appears that the Greg Bryant era at Notre Dame is over. The junior running back, who was declared academically ineligible to play for the Irish this fall, has enrolled at ASA Miami, a junior college with a new football program run by former Irish assistant Ernest Jones.
Aug 27, 2015, 9:00 AM EDT
After two seasons of trying to find carries for a handful of emerging running backs, Notre Dame has the opposite problem: Trying to spread out a growing workload among a smaller, highly-differentiated position group.
Aug 26, 2015, 1:56 PM EDT
With the season right around the corner and preseason camp finished, it’s time to get our final preparations done before the games start counting and the journey begins. We spent the summer pumping out tens of thousands of words on Notre Dame’s evolving roster, so if you’re looking for 50 hours of easy reading, check out the Irish A-to-Z series.
Aug 26, 2015, 12:42 PM EDT
Have a final question before we have actual football to talk about? Today’s the day. Drop them below or on Twitter @KeithArnold.