This year, Notre Dame’s Football team will be one of the youngest that Brian Kelly has ever had at Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish are making slight adjustments on Offense and Defense. The Defense will likely operate with three Cornerbacks most of the time. Here are Notre Dame’s players ranked 1-22, continuing with #11:
Austin Collinsworth – RS Senior – Safety
Collinsworth has been one of the consistent performers on the Notre Dame defense since getting the opportunity to play. In 2013, Collinsworth started 11 games at safety and led the team in interceptions with three. Austin also totaled up 43 stops and .5 tackles for a loss. One of the highlights of his 2013 season was hurrying the throw of Devin Gardner which led to a pick-six for Stephon Tuitt in week 2.
Not only does Collinsworth make an impact on the defensive side of the ball, but he also shines on special teams. While playing special teams, Collinsworth has amassed 68 tackles and a forced fumble. He is a smart veteran player that will be one of the vocal leaders on the defense that will aid younger players in the transition to the 4-3 defense.
In Brian VanGorder’s new defensive system the safeties will have a lot more responsibilities placed on them. With the corners playing man coverage and playing more aggressive, Collinsworth will be the last line of defense if someone gets exploited. This will move him into more of a traditional strong safety role which plays right into his strengths. Max Redfield will more than likely be playing opposite of Collinsworth roaming the centerfield in the free safety role.
Will Austin Collinsworth be perfect this season? No. Is there a possibility that he will get exploited in space? Yes, but he is the kind of player Brian Kelly covets and he will help you win football games.
- Ranking the Starters:
- 12. Ben Koyack
- 13. Steve Elmer
- 14. Jarron Jones
- 15. Amir Carlisle
- 16. Ishaq Williams
- 17. Romeo Okwara
- 18. Corey Robinson
- 19. Joe Schmidt
- 20. Cole Luke
- 21. Max Redfield
- 22. Mike McGlinchey