Blue and Gold Illustrated

June-July 2014

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

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a different angle. He could focus on one point of the offense to make his reads as a freshman. This year, he'll have to ex- pand that tunnel vision to a panorama to keep track of offensive linemen, backfield action and receivers running behind him in the passing game. "It's really just every play starts with sight," Smith said. "All my life I've seen the game from an outside perspective, so it's really just getting used to reading offensive linemen from inside out." Smith said he played inside line- backer during one playoff game in his high school career. Other than that, he's had to worry only about reading offen- sive players coming in one direction. Once he sees the linemen, stopping them could be an issue too. Notre Dame's current linebacker corps as a group is considerably smaller than in years past. Smith is the heaviest of the three projected starters at 235 pounds. Mike linebacker Joe Schmidt weighs 230 pounds, and converted safety John Turner, who took over Smith's spot at the Sam position, was only 217 pounds at the start of spring. By comparison, last year's four starting linebackers av- eraged 243 pounds. Smith was easily the lightest of that bunch. He gained at least 10 pounds during his first year on campus, but Smith said he has no plans to keep bulking up this summer. "I'm where I need to be," he said. "I'm 235 and that's where I want to be. I won't be getting any bigger. I want to keep my speed." If opposing offenses can't hide, he doesn't want them to be able to run either. ✦ 1-800-421-7751 • Notre Dame Framed Art Prints — $59.95 ea. + FREE S&H* Notre Dame "Eglomise" style digital photos reproduce the transparency effect of an image reverse-painted on glass. Available in two styles. Digital matting resembles real mats • Official interlocking ND logo • Image size 11x14 • MDF frame size 13x16 • Protective glass front • Made in U.S.A. *Prints are dropshipped direct from the manufacturer. Shipping in continental U.S. only.

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