Allen Pinkett: Davaris Daniels Would Be Biggest Loss for Notre Dame

Campus Insiders Associate Editor Rich Cirminiello and Irish insider Allen Pinkett break down what they learned from Friday’s press conference including the level of support Brian Kelly is receiving from the administration and which players being held out the team will miss the most.

Surprisingly, the former Notre Dame great Pinkett thinks senior wide receiver Davaris Daniels and not All-American candidate corner Keivarae Russell or starting defensive end Ishaq Williams would be the biggest loss for Notre Dame even though the depth at defensive end is paper thin. On a positive note, Pinkett doesn’t think the rest of the Irish players will be effected much by this latest distraction for Notre Dame.

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  1. bj 3 years ago

    i went to nd from 1966 to 1970. in those four years i never saw anyone cheat at nd. st marys was a different story. i did see one senior, drunk football player offering $25 for a paper in the last quarter of his senior year. no one paid any attention to him. the team was their life and none of the players wanted to besmirch it. they all graduated, even if they turned pro. they did get some grace with irish history taught by an nd priest and football tickets for family which they sometimes sold. they got in fights downtown. they ate with all the other students and there were no special dorms for them. some got preferences for sorin or walsh. other than that nd gave no special favors and the team was a sacred trust to them. some of them were unique: rocky blier, george kunz, coley obrien.

    lou later did reach outside the normal catholic high school feeder system to bring some guys that needed academic help or tutors. all of that was available to anybody who needed it. but he was a tough tough disciplinarian. and he brought great men to the team bettis, brooks, rice, the rocket.

    over time the traditional catholic high school network grew less reliable, kevin white’s incompetence made nd a less appealing place, even for catholic eastern european kids. and the culture of the schools changed. and probably fewer catholics with a little less reverance for the meaning of the place. more left early to go to the pros. we havent been able to replace that or come up with a unique way to outrecruit the others.

    swarbrick concentrated on the business side. not rebuilding the feeder system that made us so great. i was amazed so see that in the last decade no outland trophy winners cam from nd:

    2013 Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh (DT) 6-0 285 Sr. Pittsburgh, Pa.
    Finalists: Jake Matthews (Texas A&M OT); Cyril Richardson (Baylor G)
    2012 Luke Joeckel, Texas A&M (OT) 6-6 310 Jr. Arlington, Texas
    Finalists: Jonathan Cooper (North Carolina G); Barrett Jones (Alabama C)
    2011 Barrett Jones, Alabama (OT) 6-5 311 Jr. Memphis, Tenn.
    Finalists: David DeCastro (Stanford G); Devon Still (Penn State DT)
    2010 Gabe Carimi, Wisconsin (OT) 6-7 327 Sr. Cottage Grove, Wis.
    Finalists: Rodney Hudson (Florida State G); Nate Solder (Colorado OT)
    2009 Ndamukong Suh, Nebraska (DT) 6-4 300 Sr. Portland, Ore.
    Finalists: Mike Iupati (Idaho G); Russell Okung (Oklahoma State OT)
    2008 Andre Smith, Alabama (OT) 6-5 330 Jr. Birmingham, Ala.
    Finalists: Michael Oher (Mississippi OT); Duke Robinson (Oklahoma G)
    2007 Glenn Dorsey, LSU (DT) 6-3 303 Sr. Gonzales, La.
    Finalists: Anthony Collins (Kansas OT); Jake Long (Michigan OT)
    2006 Joe Thomas, Wisconsin (OT) 6-8 350 Sr. Brookfield, Wis.
    Finalists: Justin Blalock (Texas OT); Dan Mozes (West Virginia C)
    2005 Greg Eslinger, Minnesota (C) 6-3 285 Sr. Bismarck, N.D.
    Finalists: Marcus McNeill (Auburn OT); Haloti Ngata (Oregon DT)

    yet, david castro of stanford came from a catholic high school.

    kelly is recruiting the wrong type of player. anybody that cheats at nd betrays the team, the school, the tradition. they dont get it.

    but its not how many times you get knocked down but how many times you get up. vince lombardi. the team should rise to the occasion. like they did with teo. go irish.

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    1. Shazamrock 3 years ago

      A new home in 1966 cost 20k, a gallon of gas .32, a dozzen eggs .60

      People back then were considered innocent until “PROVEN” guilty!

      Times change…. and some people just don’t get it!

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  2. Jack 3 years ago

    I think people are making a big deal out of nothing.

    1. Chris Brown was starting at that wide receiver position and out played Daniels.

    2. Isaq has under performed and was being pushed by Rochell

    3. Kendal Moore would have played against Navy and that’s it

    4. Russell is a loss, but they have talent at corner and should be alright.

    Depth is an issue on defense and a lot of freshman will play this year. Losing these players will result in one less win if that. There is no reason this team should not go 9-3. The only losses I would give them off the bat is FSU and maybe SC. They should have the ability to play with any team on their schedule period. This is Kelly’s baby if they fail it is all on him. He recruited these players and it’s his team. He needs to man up and get these guys ready to play. I am done with the excuses win or be gone.

    Also, the administration needs to get their head out of their rear end and realize their St. Mary’s without football. Enough excuses and start to put a quality team on the field of good athletes and good people.

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    1. jeff 3 years ago

      Jack, I agree with a lot of your opinions on this site but disagree with most of this one. Daniels had 49 catches last year for 745 yards and 7 tds. Koyak, Brown, Prosise, Fuller, and Robinson combined didnt equal those numbers last year. Daniels will be a huge loss to this offense. As for Williams and Moore that loss will be felt to as this Defensive unit is really thin on the front seven. Russell is not replaceable. I do feel this offense will be really good this year but unfortunately I dont feel the same about the defense. This Defense will be worn down by mid season. 7-5 at best and Kelly bolts.

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  3. Scott 3 years ago


    Kevaire Russell is potential 1st round pick. He’s a top 10 cornerback in the nation. Notre Dame plays many elite WRs this year as well.

    Davaris Daniels was being out played by Cris Brown. We have speed, size, and depth at the WR.

    Ishaq Williams: is nothing more than predictions, no guarantee production.
    Kendall Moore: Depth position, not a play maker.

    These are not excuses, this is the reality. Next Man Up!

    And to KennyM ~ Notre Dame has not been this deep with talent since the early 90s.

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    1. JDH 3 years ago

      Agree with you completely Scott. Russell would be the biggest loss by far. You don’t just simply replace a likely All-American and top 10 CB. That being said, I have heard, from someone I’d consider to be a pretty good source (works on campus) that these cheating claims are BS. The players are adamant that no one EVER turned in work that wasn’t theirs. Student tudors turned the players in because “the players were not using the tudors anymore but were going to other fellow-students”. IF that is true, then I’m going to follow the money and bet that the tudor(s) in question were butt-hurt that they were losing some compensation $. Supposedly, the players did nothing more than have papers proofread and received input on how to make their product better. Who has not done that? Perfectly acceptable.

      I hope this is the case.

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      1. Ron Burgundy 3 years ago

        Call Jackie Chiles and get him on the case.

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      2. Shazamrock 3 years ago

        So can we assume that we are now rescinding the whole…

        “get ‘em out! F-ING LOSERS.” remark?

        Wise…. very wise indeed.

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      3. JDH 3 years ago

        Sure I’ll address your snark. Fair enough that you are pointing that out. It was a kneejerk, angry reaction by me to what I see as an almost cyclical “ability” at ND to comprehensively destroy positive momentum the program has made. (See the Teo debacle, Golson suspension, current “cheating” situation). And there is this uncanny “timing” to these incidents, not that any time is a good time. To a lesser degree I could use the Rees/Calabrese arrests, Floyd DUI/drinking issues etc, although they are lesser issues in my opinion.

        So, while I can see where you are coming from, you will see that in the post you just referenced, I used the word “IF”. In my post above, I also used the word “IF”.

        That being said, if it turns out that any/all of these guys were/are involved in a serious academic cheating scandal than yep, my original comments stands.

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      4. Shazamrock 3 years ago

        I most certainly understand your frustration.
        I also consider you very intelligent, well spoken, and a consistent voice of reason.
        Which is why I was taken aback by your “F’n Losers” remark.

        You have always been the voice of… let’s not condemn, convict, or throw someone under the bus prematurely.
        (Very good advice!)

        I myself don’t see this particular issue, at this particular time, as one that destroys positive momentum.
        I see it as a teaching tool.
        However it turns out, make no mistake that a message has been sent, and in the process some cages were rattled.

        Here, at the beginning of a new school term, all the players now know that they had better do the right things on the field, off the field, and in the classroom.
        And at the end of the season, hopefully ND has its entire roster for any possible bowl game or playoff.

        “If” the four players mentioned are cleared or are allowed to return at some point, I would hope that this second chance inspires them to play their best football and help their team when they very well may need it most.

        Did the Reese/Calabrese incident hurt or help that team?
        I don’t know, but I do know that turned out to be a very close knit team that won some very tough close games and ended up going 12-0.

        Michael Floyd was given a second chance.
        So where is he now?
        A certain WR from Oklahoma St. was taken ahead of Floyd in that year’s NFL Draft.
        While the kid from OKST has been nothing but trouble and isn’t playing, Floyd has been a model citizen and team player.
        I can see Golson following the same path.

        Where you see an almost cyclical ability at ND to comprehensively destroy positive momentum, I see a cyclical ability by ND to comprehensively turn young student athletes around and help make them into strong pillars of our society and leaders of men.

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      5. JDH 3 years ago

        Well said Shazam. And I sincerely hope that you are correct in your opinion that ND will use this as a positive, affirming, LEARNING experience. I do of course wish that for the young men / individuals involved. If an individual (or program for that matter) engages in a PATTERN of rule breaking and bad decisions, then we have real issues. Or if a a single incident is a major breach of ethics and rules.

        I’m almost always willing to give someone a second chance, particularly young people. God knows I’m a sinner and He gives us chance after chance after chance.

        This new situation, like millions of fans, really PISSED me off (assuming they did cheat) because of it being 2 weeks before kickoff, AND the fact that we all just dealt with this! (Golson and Daniels)

        Again, I really hope and pray that they are exonnerated.

        In other news, it’s not just tough over here in Irish Land. Did you see the OSU’s Braxton Miller is out for the season?! Woe to the Bucks.

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    2. Kenny M 3 years ago

      Scott, I think you need to re-read my post. No where above do you see me talking about this team having depth. You take 3 starters off any team in the country and its a headache for any program. You don’t replace a Russell who is one of the five best corners in the country. Even Daniels play will be missed this year. I fully expected Daniels to have a great year this coming season because he would have been playing for his NFL future.

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  4. Doug 3 years ago

    To me Russell is the only one leaving a hole on the team this year. Daniels was experienced and consistant but like Shaz said, this team is beyond deep with young talent at receiver and someone will step in and fill the void rather easily.

    Also, if the season depended on Ishaq we were in trouble from jump street. They will be fine this year and will definitely not be “crippled” from this.

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    1. jeff 3 years ago

      Not sure why you guys so easily consider the the loss of Daniels to be no big deal. Sure ND has depth at WR like never before but it is depth without experience in my opinion. IMO Chris Brown has been a disappointment so far. There is certainly no guarantee Brown tears it up this year. He has 16 receptions in two years compared to Daniels 80 receptions.

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      1. George 3 years ago

        Totally agree on Daniels. Why is everyone saying Brown is better than DD all of a sudden? Just because of some plays he made in a practice in July? Or maybe because there was an article written about him on this site. My only issue with DD is that he seems to get hurt a lot, but spouting off about Chris Brown having surpassed him is just wrong. Brown was a GHOST last year. In fact he’s only made one real play in his career. DD has been a pretty reliable weapon over the years… not to mention only one of about 3 ND players who actually looked like they belonged on the same field as Ala two years ago. Oh well… what should I expect amongst fans who want Golson benched before the season even starts in favor of the backup.

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  5. Shazamrock 3 years ago

    ND currently has more quality depth then at any time since the 65 player rule was incorporated.

    ND was (and still is) overloaded at receiver. One players loss, will be another player’s gain.

    ND, on defense, is not going into this season with Bob Diaco or a Bob Diaco defense. Van Gorder was already committed in relying more on speed and quickness,(Although Russell will be sorely missed in man coverage, and Williams and Moore in short yardage and goal line situations)

    Every team needs an edge… be it “a chip on their shoulder”, “having something thing to prove”, “a chance at redemption”, “a dedicated driving force”, or some other type of “adversity” that forces a team to pull together.

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  6. Kenny M 3 years ago

    I think replacing 3 starters on this team will cripple this team for this year. We simply don’t have the depth to lose these players. Daniels father is 100% right, the program handled this completely wrong. Either Daniels is a dumbass or he is innocent and I am starting to think maybe these guys are innocent. Why would Daniels coming off suspension risk his season given that he is trying to get drafted next spring? I just don’t think he is dumb enough to make that mistake. Maybe its just me hoping these players get their names clear before the Michigan game but there is nothing wrong with a girlfriend of one of the players proof reading papers. I would love to know the source of this mess and if that source can be trusted. We are talking about these players future on and off the field. Russell and Daniels both have NFL talent and would have got drafted next year.

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