Thursday, March 23, 2006

Spring is Finally Upon Us...

...because Notre Dame has started spring practice. Weis shared his first thoughts of the new season here and Blue Gray Sky, as always is covering spring ball like a blanket here. While there are a number of players like Jeff Samardzija, D.J. Hord, Maurice Crum, Kyle McCarthy, Victor Abiamiri, John Sullivan, Brian Mattes, Justin Hoskins, Chris Frome and others who will see limited or no action in spring ball because of injuries or in Samardzija's case, baseball commitments, there are two things I'm interested in seeing.

One, will the defensive line show any kind of improvement? The defensive line was the achilles heel of the Irish last season and the line is going to have to be twice as good next season if they want to be national championship contenders.

Two, who will emerge as the potential significant contributors for next season? Will it be one of the freshman: George West, James Aldridge or Chris Stewart? Will be someone who showed occasional flashes last season like David Grimes? Will it be someone who's been riding on the pine for most of his Notre Dame career? Or will it be all of the above?