Notre Dame was hovering above the NCAA mandated limit of 85 scholarships for a while now. Until Wednesday that is. Sophomore David Adams announced his retirement late Tuesday due to a litany of injuries he suffered over the last few years. Adams announced his retirement on Twitter late Tuesday night.
— DAVID ADAMS (@David_Adams1335) June 20, 2018
Adams suffered through a number of injuries during his brief football career. According to Irish Sports Daily, the listed included:
- Surgery on left shoulder from complete labral tear
- Surgery on right shoulder from a torn labrum, rotator cuff, and bicep tendon
- Right knee surgery on a cyst
- Torn UCL in his elbow
- Sprained MCL
- Chronic severe shin splints
- Chronic severe patellar tendinitis in the knees
That is a lot for any athlete to endure let alone one just a year removed from his high school graduation.
David Adams came to Notre Dame just last year as part of a two man linebacking class in 2017. Adams was a composite 4-star linebacker and the highest rated backer of the duo in the class that also featured Drew White. Both, however were recruited for former defensive coordinator Brian Vangorder’s traditional 4-3 defense. With the arrival of Mike Elko’s and now Clark Lea‘s 4-2-5 defense that features two traditional linebackers and a ROVER, Notre Dame faced a potential logjam in the linebacking corps.
Adams’ early retirement – which will keep him on scholarship but not count against the 85 limit – still leaves Notre Dame with a lot of bodies to man the three positions following a few position changes. Isaiah Robertson, DJ Morgan, and Jordan Genmark-Heath all appear to have futures at linebacker after coming to Notre Dame as defensive backs.
The Irish also signed four linebackers in February in the class of 2018 and have two backs committed for 2019 following the commitments of Jack Kiser and Osita Ekwonu last week.
Prior to the news of the early end to Adam’s career, Notre Dame was sitting at 86 scholarships and that was following the graduate transfers of Jay Hayes, Nick Watkins, and Freddy Canteen. Notre Dame is now at 85 scholarships and could conceivably end up below the 85 limit by the time practice begins in August.