Blue and Gold Illustrated

August 2017

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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Page 20 of 63 AUGUST 2017 21 nerback, but struggled to dent the two deep. He moved to safety during the spring and will look to find a role on special teams in his third season. SPECIAL TEAMS IMPACT Junior kicker Justin Yoon has made 82.4 percent of his field goal attempts his first two seasons. He was not fully healthy the last year, but when he is right he has a powerful and ac- curate leg. Notre Dame needs Yoon to be 100 percent, and if he is he gives the Irish a reliable weapon in the kick game. Sanders is a dynamic kick returner and should once again be one of the nation's top performers this season. But he has been erratic as a punt re- turner, and if that continues Finke could take over. In addition, the starting special teams units will likely be littered with juniors this season. ✦ Players Signed: 24 Players Available In 2017: 19 (Four-star linebacker Josh Barajas transferred to Illinois State; three-star wide receiver Jalen Guyton transferred to Trinity Valley Community College and is now at North Texas; four-star center Tristen Hoge transferred to BYU; three-star defensive end Bo Wallace transferred to Arizona State; and four-star safety Mykelti Williams transferred to Iowa Western Community College and is now at Syracuse). 2015 Recruiting Rankings: Rivals (No. 11), Scout (No. 13), 247Sports (No. 15) and ESPN (No. 16) Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Josh Adams RB 6-2 220 Primed to be a 1,000-yard rusher and 30-catch back this season. Asmar Bilal* LB 6-2 229 The most athletic linebacker on the roster will be a vital rotation player in 2017. Miles Boykin* WR 6-4 225 A breakout spring has him pushing for serious minutes in 2017. Nick Coleman S 6-0 187 Earned the starting Stud safety spot after a consistent spring. Te'von Coney LB 6-1 235 Started nine games in 2016 and will be the top backup at linebacker this fall. Shaun Crawford* CB 5-9 175 Injuries have derailed his first two seasons and raise questions about his 2017 effectiveness. Micah Dew-Treadway* DT 6-4 299 Has not been able to stay healthy, but will get a chance to play in 2017. Nicco Fertitta S 5-9 179 Has a special teams niche while trying to provide depth at safety. Chris Finke* WR 5-9½ 177 Former walk-on has flashed playmaking skills as a receiver and return man. Alizé Mack* TE 6-4½ 245 After missing the 2016 season, he is projected to emerge as a top offensive weapon. Trevor Ruhland* OL 6-3½ 303 Moved to center and will likely to be the top backup at the position. C.J. Sanders WR 5-8 185 Has returned one punt and three kickoffs for touchdowns in his career. Equanimeous St. Brown WR 6-5 204 Notre Dame's top pass catcher is looking to emerge as one of the nation's best in 2017. Elijah Taylor* DT 6-3 280 A spring foot injury has raised questions about his role this season. Brandon Tiassum* DT 6-4 304 Came on strong late in the spring and will look to earn first playing time as a junior. Jerry Tillery DT 6-6½ 308 Notre Dame's most experienced lineman needs to take his game to a higher level. Ashton White* S 5-10½ 197 After being buried on the depth chart at cornerback, he will look to find a home at safety. Dexter Williams RB 5-11 202 Explosive athlete should expand his 39 carries from last year. Brandon Wimbush* QB 6-1½ 226 First-year starter has the makings to be Brian Kelly's best quarterback. Justin Yoon K 5-10 195 Has made 82.4 percent of his 34 career field goal attempts. * Eligible for a fifth season in 2019 Junior Class Review C.J. Sanders has proven to be a dynamic return man his first two seasons at Notre Dame, running back one punt and three kickoffs for touchdowns. PHOTO BY RICK KIMBALL

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