The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have a roster full of players, and we want to talk about them all. 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 2020 season.
#54 Jacob Lacey, DL
Lacey was a 4-Star prospect according to the 247 Sports Composite rankings as the no. 15 defensive tackle in the nation, and helped lead his South Warren High School team to the 2018 Kentucky State 5A championship before enrolling early at Notre Dame. Lacey chose the Irish over the Clemson Tigers, Kentucky Wildcats, and others.
Jacob Lacey made a solid contribution during his freshman season. Over 11 games in 2019, Lacey claimed 14 tackles, 1.5 TFL, and a half a sack. After losing Jerry Tillery and Jonathan Bonner to graduation, the Irish needed help to back-up Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa and Kurt Hinish with its defensive tackle rotation. Jacob was that instant help that is usually a rare occurrence at this level.
Lacey has his eye on the prize, and Coach Kelly knows it. We’re going with Rocky Balboa for Lacey’s spirit animal. Cue the training montage.
In his showing against the Midshipmen, Lacey proved he wasn’t messing around. Now that Lacey has shown he can deliver under pressure, Irish fans can expect him to make even more of an impact as a sophomore. He has demanded attention from his coaches and can only grow from here. Both Hinish and MTA return for Notre Dame as the de facto starters on the inside of the defensive line, but Lacey will be relied upon to become an even bigger part of the rotation that includes Jamion Franklin, Jayson Ademilola, and Howard Cross III.
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