Welcome to Hot and Cold Takes: Freshman Camp Storylines Edition. As a reminder to all of the readers, this is HEAVILY driven by you. To recap: the format allows for readers and fans to leave their own takes for the game, both HOT and COLD. As a recap, a HOT take is one that may cause some controversy, but will allow you to say “CALLED IT!”. A COLD take is still impressive, but is generally more reasonable/expected. Normally, I highlight the most accurate, most interesting, and most wildly incorrect “fan takes” the following week. This one will be a bit more drawn out as camp is a month long...but you’ll have your time Enjoy and remember to leave your Takes (any temperature) for the matchup between the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
Coming into college camp as a freshman can be VERY intimidating. As a former college freshman for THE College of the Holy Cross.....I can confirm this. You are going from being the best player on your team for your entire life, to the bottom of the totem pole (for the most part). Personally, the goal was simple.... figure out a way to be on special teams. Even with just this goal, camp crushed me. I started off very strong, but as camp wore on, my legs became dead weight and my brain turned to mush, and I faded for a bit. As a writer/fan/player, it is important that we remember the toll camp can take on Freshman, and to not yell at coaches for freshman to play right away. These are 18 year olds who are adjusting to something they have never experienced before. Be patient, give them time, and for God’s sake be HAPPY BECAUSE FOOTBALL IS BACK YA’LLLLLLL. (thank you for attending my Ted Talk, now let’s get to some takes)
Tyler Buchner will make plenty of, “WOW” plays
Remember, this is a COLD take. Buchner comes in with the athletic skillsets that a Notre Dame Quarterback hasn’t had in my lifetime. Yes, Brandon Wimbush was an elite runner, but didn’t have “it” with his arm. Buchner brings both elite running/throwing ability, coupled with the ability to make throws while on the run. There will be moments throughout camp where media, players, mothers, fathers, and twitter commenters shout for him to be the starter. He will make some ridiculous throws in tight windows while on the run, especially at the beginning of camp. However, I expect him to fade a bit as camp wears on as he will still have some freshman moments. Do I think he will threaten to start? No.....But do I think he will flash enough in camp to warrant a package to get him in the game? Yes. Everyone wants to watch Buchner, and I think we will see him flourish in his first camp.
Price Collie will exit camp as a rotational player on the defense and a starter on all Special Teams
If Paul Moala was completely healthy, I would have reservations about this take. Kollie is an elite athlete and already has a grown man’s body. The tolls of camp shouldn’t wear on him too much physically and he seems like an incredibly sharp kid. I see Jack Kiser easily winning the starting role, but Kollie carving out a role in various packages. I love how Marcus Freeman is focusing on simplifying to schemes to get players on the field earlier. I see this playing out for Kollie, who will also double as a special teams standout for the Irish.