IRISH STEW

Notre Dame football practice notes 3-25

IRISH STEW

Tyler James
South Bend Tribune

Another practice inside of the Loftus Sports Center marked the fifth session of the spring for Notre Dame football. As rain outside melted away the snow from the start of the week, the Irish turned up the heat indoors.

The defense started practice doing up-downs as a group — a drill designed for conditioning — rather than the usual tempo drill that runs through the various 11-man defensive groups. The early part of practice observed by media also featured physical matchups of the offensive line against the defensive line.

The Irish were missing a handful of players who did not practice: linebacker Jarrett Grace, wide receiver Corey Robinson, defensive end Andrew Trumbetti and defensive back Matthias Farley. Initial indications were that the players were not sidelined with serious injuries. Defensive tackle Jarron Jones (Lisfranc injury) remained out.

Linebacker Joe Schmidt and safeties Nicky Baratti and Drue Tranquill were dressed for practice and took on varying amounts of contact with Schmidt doing the least of the group.

On offense, the Irish ran through their typical tempo drill that gives a glimpse at the depth chart to start practice. The first offense to run together lined up as follows: quarterback Everett Golson, running back Greg Bryant, wide receivers Will Fuller, Chris Brown and Amir Carlisle, tight end Tyler Luatua and offensive lineman (left to right) Ronnie Stanley, Quenton Nelson, Nick Martin, Steve Elmer and Mike McGlinchey.

The second unit included quarterback Malik Zaire, rotating running backs Tarean Folston and C.J. Prosise, wide receivers Justin Brent, Corey Holmes and Torii Hunter Jr., tight end Durham Smythe, and offensive linemen Hunter Bivin, Alex Bars, Sam Mustipher, John Montelus and Mark Harrell.

During individual drill work, the quarterbacks and running backs spent time working on zone read combinations, something the Irish used frequently in the Music City Bowl win over LSU.

Wide receiver recruit Joshua Hammond took in part of practice Wednesday morning. The three-star prospect from Hallandale, Fla., is hitting Notre Dame, Ohio State and Michigan this week, according to his head coach. 

Rivals ranks the 6-foot-1, 180-pound Hammond as the No. 57 wide receiver in the 2016 class. 247Sports slates him No. 78 at the position. The Irish offered Hammond in late January.

Injured players look on during Notre Dame football practice on Wednesday, March 25, 2015, inside the Loftus Sports Center at Notre Dame in South Bend. SBT Photo/ROBERT FRANKLIN