Blue and Gold Illustrated


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

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 25 of 67

26 PRESEASON 2022 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED high-end playmaker on the back end. But right now, his opportunity looks to be a year away. He has been working behind graduate student DJ Brown in preseason camp. 20. DT JACOB LACEY It's hard to get noticed on a defensive line that also consists of Foskey, Jayson Ademilola and Mills, but Lacey might be just fine with flying under the radar a bit. The senior finally has an opportu- nity to be a full-time starter after not starting any of the 33 games he played in over his first three years in South Bend. He provides an element of quickness at nose tackle that could make him a plus run stopper and pass rusher. Lacey has yet to remain healthy for an entire season, which is an emphasis this fall. 21. RB AUDRIC ESTIME Notre Dame coaches insist the 5-11, 229-pound Estime is more than a short- yardage bruiser with punishing power. His practice highlights from the spring and this preseason reveal better than expected agility for a running back his size. His foot speed and open-field abil- ity were pleasant surprises. There should be a rotation spot for that in a backfield with four healthy scholarship players. Can he turn it into something more? 22. OG JOSH LUGG Lugg, a graduate student in his sixth year, is Notre Dame's oldest offen- sive lineman and has started 20 career games — 17 at right tackle, 2 at center and 1 at right guard. He moves back to right guard from right tackle, where he started last season. Notre Dame has senior Andrew Kristofic, a seven-game starter at guard last year, ready if Lugg or Patterson are injured. But there's something to be said for the experience and versatility Lugg brings. 23. QB DREW PYNE Pyne has grown accustomed to a backup role. He served as Ian Book's potential replacement in 2020 and was listed as the No. 2 QB behind Jack Coan for the duration of 2021. Both of those signal-callers were much more experi- enced than Pyne. This year, Pyne had the upper hand in that department over sophomore Tyler Buchner, but the younger player won the battle to start at quarterback. Pyne could still see snaps but for now they will once again come in a back-up role. 24. C ZEKE CORRELL The senior went from odd man out after struggling in six starts at guard last year to starting center when fall camp began. Correll took the opportunity in spring practice to fill in for injured center Jar- rett Patterson (pectoral) and impressed to the point of establishing himself as one of the Irish's best five linemen. Notre Dame's response was to move Patterson, a 34-game starter at center, over to guard. 25. WR JAYDEN THOMAS The sophomore has pushed past classmate Deion Colzie this offseason as Notre Dame's best contested-catch weapon. Thomas (6-1, 215 pounds) is a physical receiver with impressive quickness and burst for his size. Head coach Marcus Freeman views him as an asset against man coverage. Thomas is the likely starter at bound- ary receiver. That position usually has produced Notre Dame's receiving yards leader in recent years. Regardless, Thomas has put himself in position to be an important part of the offense. ✦ Sophomore running back Audric Estime only carried 7 times for 60 yards as a true freshman, but his role is expected to increase this fall. PHOTO BY CHAD WEAVER

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Blue and Gold Illustrated - Preseason2022