O-line shuffles again for Notre Dame as Baker is ruled out for showdown with Cincinnati

Eric Hansen
ND Insider

SOUTH BEND — Notre Dame’s mini streak of continuity at left tackle came to an abrupt end Saturday for its top 10 matchup with No. 7 Cincinnati (3-0).

Sophomore Tosh Baker, ND’s starter the past two games, was ruled out for the ninth-ranked Irish (4-0), as was grad senior nose guard Kurt Hinish, per a release issued by ND sports information 90 minutes prior to kickoff.

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly had mentioned Hinish’s expected absence earlier in the week.

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ND’s starting nose guard also sat out the 41-13 win over Wisconsin Sept. 25 at Soldier Field in Chicago, because he had not cleared concussion protocol. Kelly said Hinish is expected to be available for next Saturday’s road game at Virginia Tech.

Baker had been listed as an either/or starter/backup this week on ND’s official depth chart with sophomore Michael Carmody. Carmody missed wins over Purdue (Sept. 18) and Wisconsin with an ankle injury suffered in his only career start, Sept. 11 against Toledo.

Notre Dame offensive lineman Tosh Baker (79) lines up with teammates during the Notre Dame vs. Purdue NCAA football game Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021 at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

Freshman Blake Fisher started the Sept. 5 season opener at Florida State, but suffered what could be a season-ending knee injury in that game. Carmody finished up against the Seminoles.

With Baker unavailable, freshman Joe Alt is expected to back up Carmody.

Follow ND Insider Eric Hansen on Twitter: @EHansenNDI