The Notre Dame running back room had an eventful day on Monday. Redshirt freshman Kyren Williams was named the ACC Rookie of the Week while Brian Kelly announced that redshirt sophomore Jahmir Smith was leaving the football program.
Williams earned his second ACC weekly award with his 127 yards, 25 carry effort against Louisville over the weekend. He ranks second in the ACC and fifth nationally on the season with 121.5 yards per game. Earlier this season, Williams was named the ACC Running Back of the Week for his performance against Duke in the season opener.
Saturday with Williams’s third 100+ yard performance of the season. He ran for 112 with 2 TDs against Duke and 185 yards with another 2 TDs last two weeks ago against Florida State.
Williams and Notre Dame will face their toughest defense to run on this weekend as the Irish travel to Pittsburgh for their first road game of the year.
Jahmir Smith, on the other hand, only tallied five carries this season – all in week one – for a total of 15 yards. Smith fell behind Williams, true freshman Chris Tyree, and classmate C’bo Flemister before he missed the South Florida game as one of the players unavailable right at the start of the COVID-19 outbreak in the program.
Smith ran for two touchdowns in last year’s season opener against Louisville and then never saw the endzone again for the rest of his career. He had a career-high 58 yards rushing against Duke in 2019.
Even without Smith, Notre Dame has four established running backs with Jafar Armstrong, last year’s opening day starter, now fourth on the depth chart. Notre Dame currently has one running back in the class of 2021 – Logan Diggs – though they continue to recruit top-100 RB Donovan Edwards.