Thursday, January 11, 2007

Notre Dame Football News Round-Up

Lots of Notre Dame news today. The first being that Darius Walker announced that he will forgo his senior season and enter the NFL draft. I have to say that this is a smart move for Walker. While he is likely to be a late 3rd round or early 4th round pick at best, he was not going to improve his stock much next year and in fact, would more likely hurt his NFL stock, as Notre Dame looks to be loaded at running back next year and there's always a risk of a Senior year injury. The biggest knock against Walker is his lack of speed and spending another year at Notre Dame is not going to help that. Walker should be a solid third down back for some NFL team.

The second big news item of the day is that nine Notre Dame players were granted fifth years. They are: Tom Zbikowski, Travis Thomas, John Carlson, John Sullivan, Trevor Laws, Dwight Stephenson, Joe Brockington, Ambrose Wooden and Geoff Price. To get Carlson, Sullivan and Laws back are huge. Carlson should be a great safety blanket for the new Notre Dame quarterback, and Sullivan and Laws provide much needed depth and experience to the offensive line and defensive line respectively. It's also good to have Geoff Price back who did a great job punting this year.

The third big new item of the day is that Notre Dame has their 17th verbal commitment of their recruiting class and it's a shocker: Chris Little, the stud offensive tackle from Georgia. It's a shocker because just a few days ago at the Army All-American game, Little announced that he would be attending Florida State, but with a change in the offensive coaching staff, Little had a change of heart and has committed to the Irish. If Little does in fact sign with the Irish (and at this point, I won't believe he has signed with Notre Dame until I see his signature since he seems to change his mind constantly), Notre Dame's two year run at recruiting offensive linemen might be the most impressive crop of offensive linemen in recent memory at Notre Dame. In the past two years, Notre Dame has recruited ten offensive linemen. That should open lots of running room for James Aldridge and company and keep Jimmy Clausen in one piece.