Notre Dame Football: Ranking 2020’s most impactful players – 20-16

RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA - AUGUST 31: Nick McCloud #4 of the North Carolina State Wolfpack warms up before their game against the East Carolina Pirates at Carter-Finley Stadium on August 31, 2019 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA - AUGUST 31: Nick McCloud #4 of the North Carolina State Wolfpack warms up before their game against the East Carolina Pirates at Carter-Finley Stadium on August 31, 2019 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /
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RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – AUGUST 31: Nick McCloud #4 of the North Carolina State Wolfpack warms up before their game against the East Carolina Pirates at Carter-Finley Stadium on August 31, 2019 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – AUGUST 31: Nick McCloud #4 of the North Carolina State Wolfpack warms up before their game against the East Carolina Pirates at Carter-Finley Stadium on August 31, 2019 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

20. Nick McCloud (Cornerback)

Best Ranking: No. 5

Worst Ranking: Unranked

As soon as McCloud announced his transfer from NC State to Notre Dame, he became perhaps the best Cornerback on the Irish roster. In his best year with the Wolfpack, McCloud tallied 51 tackles, 2 interceptions, and 8 passes broken up. After suffering an injury at the beginning of last season, McCloud decided to redshirt and graduate transfer; ending up in South Bend. He probably represents the best all-round Cornerback on Notre Dame’s roster.

McCloud brings a physical presence to the position. He is a great compliment to Tariq Bracy and Shaun Crawford are smaller, rangier Defensive Backs. Depending on matchups, McCloud will play the boundary spot with Crawford and Bracy rotating at the field.

His addition also gives Clark Lea more flexibility with his Defensive Back depth chart. It allows younger players like KJ Wallace and Isaiah Rutherford to progress into their roles. Crawford can also rotate at the Safety spot next to Kyle Hamilton.

McCloud addition is important because he is a great, veteran player. But, it cannot be understated how impactful the addition of a solid player at a position of weakness is. It completely shifts the outlook of the 2020 Notre Dame defense.