After several weeks of speculation and rumor it has been confirmed that current junior and senior-to-be Steve Elmer is leaving the Notre Dame football program. He is graduating early and will be pursuing a professional opportunity in Washington, D.C. this summer.
After 3 unforgettable years, I've decided to forgo my final season of athletic eligibility. I'll always be Irish!https://t.co/a1svK9qCdK— Steven Elmer (@Steve_Elmer) February 16, 2016
Elmer was the gem and anchor of the 2013 recruiting class for the Fighting Irish. In fact, it's hard to imagine a more enjoyable recruitment than the one we witnessed with the Midland, Michigan native.
He committed to Notre Dame on September 17, 2011 nearly 17 months before the 2013 class signed with the Irish. Elmer attended Junior Day in the spring of 2012, made it to Oregon for The Opening, camped at Notre Dame in the summer, and made several trips to see the Irish play during their run to the National Championship that fall.
Elmer enrolled early at Notre Dame in January 2013 shortly after participating in the U.S. Army All-American Game. When the final rankings came out for his class he was the Composite No. 10 tackle in the country and No. 112 overall recruit in the nation. A very poor grade from ESPN, who ranked him the No. 26 OT, prevented Elmer from ever gaining 5-star status but he was a Top 50-type of player according to the other 3 services.
Brian Kelly on Steve Elmer’s departure from Notre Dame’s football program pic.twitter.com/1YSsdQ9LmV— Irish Illustrated (@PeteSampson_) February 16, 2016
Following an immediate rise into the two-deep, Elmer started 4 games at right guard as a true freshman after senior Christian Lombard finally bowed out with a back injury. As a sophomore, he started the first 3 games at right tackle before moving inside to right guard where he had started each of Notre Dame's last 23 games.
With the loss of Elmer the Irish now have to replace 3 starters along the offensive line including left tackle Ronnie Stanley and center Nick Martin.