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This Guy Plays Notre Dame Football: #42 Julian Okwara

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Notre Dame’s defense could hinge on it’s pass rush...

Wake Forest v Notre Dame Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have a roster full of players, and we want to talk about all of them. One Foot Down’s player profile series will take a look at every single one of them, and hopefully we all learn a little bit more about these guys, and Notre Dame’s chances for the upcoming 2018 season.

#42 Julian Okwara

Julian Okwara will be a junior defensive end in 2018 for Notre Dame. He stands at 6’4.5 and weighs 230 pounds. Okwara should lead Notre Dame in sacks this season. He is without a doubt the most explosive pass rusher on the roster to date. A small concern was that Okwara lost weight during the offseason but with a whole summer to train, he should have his body ready to improve on a promising sophomore season.

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

Three Things To Know About Julian Okwara:

  1. I am sure most Notre Dame fans know this, but he is the younger brother of Romeo Okwara. Romeo last played for ND in 2016 and currently plays for the New York Giants.
  2. Julian Okwara moved to the United States in 3rd grade from the African country of Nigeria. He lived in Charlotte, North Carolina before relocating to South Bend for college.
  3. His sophomore season was his coming out party. Okwara recorded 2.5 sacks to go along with a forced fumble and an interception.

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Country, Condiment, Or Canon

Identifying the player as either a country, condiment, or member of the Star Wars Canon.

Nigeria.

I mean, it’s only fair to give a guy his home country when having to make an outlandish comparison. I honestly could not think of anything else for this one and having be born in a native country, it made perfect sense to match up Julian Okwara with Nigeria. That’s all I got for this one.

2018 Outlook

This is one player I am extremely excited about for 2018. Julian Okwara showed many flashes of what his potential is playing football. He will be Notre Dame’s best speed rusher this season. The jump this guy can make should have everyone on their edge of their seat. I have a feeling we haven’t seen anything close to the best that Julian Okwara has to offer. Every 3rd and long that Notre Dame’s defense forces, look for #42 to be manning the edge.

The one area that Okwara can improve is in run defense and strength. But in all honesty, if he only comes in during passing downs and records sacks, he gets an A+ in my grade book.