Quick Hits: Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly's Navy week press conference
The bye week is over for No. 3 Notre Dame (7-0). Now the Irish have to prepare for Saturday's matchup in San Diego with Navy (2-5).
Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly unofficially started the week with his press conference previewing the Navy game on Tuesday.
These are the notable statements from Kelly.
• Sophomore Aaron Banks has been elevated to the starting left guard spot. "Aaron has accelerated his game to the the point where we feel comfortable starting him at the left guard position," Kelly said. As far as strengths for Banks, Kelly listed his pass protection, moving his feet well and playing with explosiveness.
• As a result, senior Trevor Ruhland has moved into a competition with junior Tommy Kraemer at the right guard spot. Kelly said both will play as they complement each other well.
• Running back Jafar Armstrong practiced on Monday and will play on Saturday. Armstrong has been sidelined since the Stanford game with a knee infection. Cornerback Troy Pride Jr., who sat out the Pittsburgh game with an ankle injury, also practiced and will play.
• The kickoff job will remain Jonathan Doerer's, Kelly said. The staff wants Justin Yoon to continue to focus on field goals and extra points and only be used when Doerer has technical issues that prevent him from succeeding. Yoon had a soreness in his groin following the Pittsburgh game, and Kelly wants to keep him healthy.
• Kelly said they've used a number of different players to imitate the three quarterbacks Notre Dame could see against Navy: Malcolm Perry, Garret Lewis and Zach Abey. Wide receiver Lawrence Keys III has been assigned the role of Perry. Quarterback Phil Jurkovec has been one of the players used in the Abey role.
• Kelly said he won't use the Ohio State-Purdue game as an example of what can happen in college football. "They know where they are. They have to stay focused and stick with their process," Kelly said.
• Kelly said he made a conscious decision to change his demeanor on the sideline in recent years. "Our team responds better if I'm able to interact with them, be there, lead them. They react if I'm confident and I'm in a good position for them. They feed off of that," Kelly said.