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Notre Dame Football: How Will The Irish Trim The Roster Before Fall?

There are four players on the roster that won’t be there in the fall.

NCAA Football: Georgia at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

We all wanted a big signing day for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, and for the most part, that’s exactly what we got in February. Names kept appearing on the board, and many of us were all YES I’LL TAKE THAT ONE TOO!

The trouble was that there were only so many scholarships to give with the 85 man limit. Normally that is never much of an issue for the Irish as they have annually fell short of that limit for well over a decade. Injuries, transfers, suspensions, and alien invasions have affected the Irish in varying degrees during past offseasons, and surely a few of those events could still happen.

So who?

Notre Dame is still four scholarships over the limit for 2018. Which four players will NOT be on the roster when the Michigan Wolverines come to town?

2018 Notre Dame Football Scholarship Chart

Position/Year Freshman Sophomore Junior Senior 5th Year
Position/Year Freshman Sophomore Junior Senior 5th Year
Quarterback Phil Jurkovec Avery Davis* Ian Book* Brandon Wimbush*
Running Back Jahmir Smith, C'Bo Flemister Jafar Armstrong* Tony Jones Jr.* Dexter Williams
Tight End George Takacs, Tommy Tremble Cole Kmet, Brock Wright Alize' Mack* Nic Weishar
Wide Receiver Micah Jones, Kevin Austin, Braden Lenzy, Lawrence Keys III Michael Young Chase Claypool, Javon McKinley* Chris Finke*, Miles Boykin*
Center Luke Jones Sam Mustipher
Guard John Dirksen Dillan Gibbons* Tommy Kraemer* Trevor Ruhland* Alex Bars
Tackle Cole Mabry, Jarrett Patterson Josh Lugg*, Robert Hainsey, Aaron Banks* Liam Eichenberg*
Defensive Tackle Jayson Ademilola, Ja'mion Franklin Kurt Hinish, Darnell Ewell*, Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa Micah Dew-Treadway*, Jerry Tillery Jonathan Bonner
Defensive End Justin Ademilola Kofi Wardlow* Ade Ogundeji*, Daelin Hayes, Khalid Kareem, Julian Okwara
Linebacker Matt Bauer, Ovio Oghoufo, Jack Lamb Drew White*, Jordan Genmark Heath Jonathan Jones*, Jamir Jones, DJ Morgan Te'von Coney Drue Tranquill
Rover Shayne Simon Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah*, Isaiah Robertson Asmar Bilal
Safety Derrik Allen, Paul Moala, Houston Griffith Devin Studstill, Jalen Elliott, Alohi Gilman* Nicco Fertitta, Nick Coleman
Cornerback Joe Wilkins Jr., Tariq Bracy, D.J. Brown, Noah Boykin Julian Love, Troy Pride Jr., Donte Vaughn Shaun Crawford**
Specialists John Doerer John Shannon* Justin Yoon Tyler Newsome
27/85 (27) 45/85 (18) 65/85 (20) 79/85 (14) 85/85 (6)
*Eligible For 5th Year **Eligible For 6th Year

This isn’t a question that’s easy to ask - nor does it have an easy answer. Still, it’s a harsh reality that MUST be faced before the season begins. Did Brian Kelly and the staff count on a few guys leaving after spring football? Were they overpreparing for the possibility of Jerry Tillery and Te’Von Coney leaving for the NFL?

At this point it doesn’t really matter much as to why the staff oversigned so many recruits for 2018. What matters is what happens next. Notre Dame has a fair history of not processing players out of the program - which is mostly the reason the Irish fall so short of that 85 each year.

So who leaves? Who is unhappy with their situation? Who is lining up to leave to better their playing chances? The rumors of C.J. Holmes and/or Deon McIntosh having a path back to the team aren’t really an option right now. For starters, those rumors have no facts to support them, and Notre Dame needs players off the roster - not adding more to it for the upcoming season.

NCAA Football: Temple at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Take a look at the scholarship chart and tell me who won’t be on the roster this fall. I’m having a hard time figuring it all out despite knowing that at some point over the next few months we should know the four that will be gone.

I applaud Brian Kelly and the staff for being proactive in their hunt for a solid 85, but how does that all come about? It’s a question that has become lost to most Irish fans, but anytime I think about the fall and what may be, I can’t help but wonder who won’t be there. Will it be a few younger guys? Will there be a few surprises with names in the 2 deep? Does Ian Book pick up his ball and go home?

Who? How? When?

The curiosity of it all has me thinking far too much. Who?