Notre Dame may not need additional receiver depth this fall, but it certainly cannot hurt. The Monday evening addition of graduate transfer Cameron Smith from Arizona State should give the Irish just that.
As a graduate transfer, Smith will be allowed to play this fall, and even though he is joining Notre Dame after spring practice, it should not take him much time to get up to speed. Irish receivers coach Del Alexander was at Arizona State for Smith’s entire career until Alexander joined Notre Dame offensive coordinator Chip Long’s staff this winter. Long, himself, was at Arizona State from 2012 to 2015, overlapping with Smith for three years.
The receiver suffered a knee injury in 2015, costing him the season and halting his momentum following a sophomore year that included 41 catches for 596 yards and six touchdowns. Those numbers include four catches for 67 yards and a score against Notre Dame in a Sun Devil victory Nov. 8. If nothing else, Irish fans should remember the speed displayed on that score.
Smith’s speed could land him at the slot, or Z, receiver position in Long’s offense. Sophomore Chase Claypool projects as the current likely starter, but if Long, Alexander and Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly opt for a more prototypical blazer, Smith would seem to fit the bill, presuming health.
Smith’s Arizona State career saw a total of 60 catches for 908 yards and six touchdowns in 30 games with 18 starts over three healthy seasons.
With the transfer to BYU of junior offensive lineman Tristen Hoge, the Irish roster remains at 85 scholarship players, the NCAA maximum.Follow @D_Farmer