A dream come true. Go Irish ☘️ pic.twitter.com/2Ft09Ho4uj— Riley Leonard (@rileyleonard13_) December 12, 2023
For weeks, fans and media alike have been expecting Riley Leonard to eventually end up with the Fighting Irish, and the wait is finally at an end.
For the second year in a row, the Irish are dipping into North Carolina to grab an ACC quarterback to start for them in the next season. While some say this is an unsustainable process for Notre Dame, Marcus Freeman is mandated to put the best roster on the field that he possibly can each year. The lesson he learned in 2022 in which the Irish passed on the portal (after a season with transfer Jack Coan) made a huge impression. Notre Dame’s struggles in 2022 had a lot to do with QB play, and the combo of Tyler Buchner and Drew Pyne was definitely not going to get the job done (both of whom will be college students next year but not college football players).
This is an exciting day for Notre Dame and fans of the program, but Leonard was never a player that was really feared by some of us on this site (or the podcast). While he is a really nice athlete, there are still plenty of concerns when it comes to the passing game. As strong as those opinions were (and currently are), I’m not going to write him off as a JAG just yet. Even if he is a JAG, he’s still likely the best option for Notre Dame in 2024.
Notre Dame’s offensive line will take a big hit on the roster for 2024, so his ability to make plays happen with his feet is certainly a fantastic tool to have on his belt. The Irish will need much better WR play in 2024, and they plan to get that with continued development of the talent on hand — and they are being very aggressive in the transfer portal.
In the end, I still feel like this is the best option for the Irish in 2024, and am very excited to see what may come of all of this.
Welcome to South Bend, Riley.
2024 Notre Dame Football Scholarship Chart
|Position / Year
|Position / Year
|Aneyas Williams, Kedren Young
|Jadarian Price, Gi'Bran Payne
|Mitchell Evans, Kevin Bauman, Davis Sherwood
|Cam Williams, Micah Gilbert, Logan Saldate
|Jaden Greathouse, Kaleb Smith, Jordan Faison
|Deion Colzie, Jayden Thomas
|Kris Mitchell, Beaux Collins, Jayden Harrison
|Sam Pendleton, Joe Otting, Chris Terek
|Rocco Spindler, Pat Coogan
|Peter Jones, Anthonie Knapp, Styles Prescod, Guerby Lambert
|Sullivan Absher, Charles Jagusah
|Ty Chan, Aamil Wagner
|Devan Houstan, Armel Mukam, Brenan Vernon
|Tyson Ford, Donovan Hinish
|Howard Cross, Rylie Mills
|Cole Mullins, Bryce Young, Loghan Thomas
|Joshua Burnham, Aiden Gobaira, Junior Tuihalamaka
|Jordan Botelho, RJ Oben
|Teddy Rezac, Bodie Kahoun, Kyngstonn Viliamu-Asa
|Drayk Bowen, Preston Zinter, Jaiden Ausberry
|Kennedy Urlacher, Taebron Bennie-Powell, Brauntae Johnson
|Adon Shuler, Ben Minich
|Xavier Watts, Jordan Clark, Rod Heard
|Karson Hobbs, Leonard Moore
|Micah Bell, Christian Gray
|Jayden Mickey, Benjamin Morrison
|Bryce McFerson (P)
|Mitch Jeter (K)