Notre Dame officially announced the 5th year seniors for the 2009 season today. Here’s a rundown of the five 5th year seniors that were announced today.
- Kyle McCarthy (S) – Stepped into a starting role in 2008 in place of the graduated Tom Zbikowski and become the surest tackler on the Notre Dame defense. In 2009 McCarthy figures to start at strong safety again and will be looked at as one of the leaders of the defense.
- Paul Duncan (OT) – Duncan spent the the 2007 season starting at both tackle positions at various times, but did not play at all in 2008 after moving to guard and suffering an injury early in the season. So far in camp Duncan has been said to be the most impressive prospective left tackle.
- Mike Anello (CB) – Anello, a former walkon, was a special teams star for the Irish in 2008 as a gunner on the punt and kick return units. Anello will miss the spring with a broken leg which he suffered in the USC loss. He was named to the Lott Award watch list on Wednesday as well and figures to be a special teams standout for Notre Dame again in 2009.
- Scott Smith (LB) – Smith has primarily been a backup throughout his Notre Dame career, but with some players limited this spring, he’ll get a chance for some solid playing time. Smith will be looked at to provide leadership to a young group of linebackers after the graduation of Maurice Crum.
- Ray Herring (S) – Herring was a fan favorite during his recruitment, but has been primarily a backup during his time at Notre Dame. He will provide some quality depth in a very deep secondary this year for Notre Dame.
Here’s what Charlie Weis had to say about his group of 5th year seniors via the official release announcing the 5th year seniors for 2009.
“Today I received the news that five of our current seniors who applied for a fifth year have all been approved,” Irish head football coach Charlie Weis said. “We are happy to officially include all five players onto our roster. Their leadership is greatly appreciated.”
Notre Dame has a solid gorup of 5th year seniors this year and for the first time in a few seasons, the Irish will not be forced to rely so heavily on 5th year seniors for leadership.