In a year that has been dominated by experience, transfer Alohi Gilman has been a great addition for Notre Dame football.
When the news broke in the Spring of 2017 that Navy star safety Alohi Gilman was transferring, it wasn’t necessarily surprising. But Gilman’s transfer to Notre Dame was certainly exciting. Notre Dame Football was getting a player with three remaining years of eligibility who had shown great potential during his freshman year, even earning Freshman All-AAC honors.
The 5-10, 202 pound safety’s numbers were good: 76 total tackles (50 solo, 26 assisted) and two fumble recoveries. Not a bad way to make a debut.
Ironically, his best game as a member of the Midshipmen came against Notre Dame, where he lead the team with 12 tackles.
Gilman had to miss last year because of the transfer rule, but that didn’t stop the excitement Brian Kelly had about Gilman’s arrival. Kelly said that had it not been for the one year wait, Gilman “probably” would have stated last year.
Once Shaun Crawford tore his ACL in fall camp, there was no question Gilman would need to be a big part of the defense.
So far this year, the junior has started every game for the Irish at free safety, playing opposite Jalen Elliot. He’s currently tied for third in in tackles with the aforementioned Elliot with 38. Gilman also has two pass breakups and a forced fumble.
In seven games, he’s dead on pace to repeat his 2016 tackle numbers. That’s consistency.
Gilman has quickly become another top Irish player from Hawaii, joining the likes of Robby Toma, Kona Schwenke and Manti Te’o.
He has also has been a great leader on the defense with confidence that shows. Last season while ineligible, he basically spent the entire year as a mentor/coach figure to the scout team. It appears that mentality has transferred over to Notre Dame Stadium.
There’s no doubt that he can continue his successes. Don’t forget — he’s a junior — but can still play the remainder of this year as well as two more seasons.
Just think of the possibilities if Gilman can continue to grow on the great abilities he’s already shown. This could be your next Notre Dame defensive superstar.