News broke from Tom Loy early this afternoon that Joe Rudolph is expected to be the next offensive line coach for the Notre Dame football program. The current, soon-to-be former offensive line coach at Virginia Tech, Rudolph, has 10+ years of high-level coaching experience and OL coaching.
He was rumored to be a candidate for quite some time; he should fit nicely with the current staff, given his experience and leadership. He has been an associate head coach for numerous years and with other staffs, including Pittsburgh and Wisconsin.
At schools like Pittsburgh, Wisconsin, and Virginia Tech, Rudolph has had a relatively prosperous time as a recruiter, pulling 12 players rated in the 247Sports composite top 100. This includes 3 5-star recruits, most recently 6’8” and 295-pound Nolan Rucci of Wisconsin. He should have better success recruiting for the Irish, given the offensive line success of Notre Dame football in the past.
Though the Irish missed an improbable candidate like Matt Luke, hitting with someone like Joe Rudolph is a massive victory for Marcus Freeman. Replacing a coach like Harry Hiestand is as difficult as a coaching replacement can be, but Freeman swung for the fences. Rudolph has the recruiting experience and knowledge necessary to be a positive force throughout the locker room and on the recruiting trail.
Given the connection many players already have with respective staffs, it’ll be interesting to see who Joe can recruit for the 2024 class. Still, the Irish have been offering recruits at a rampant rate along the offensive line even without an offensive line coach in place. I’m sure they’ll have plenty of time to land a couple of big-time prospects before all is said and done.
While not the most exciting hire, Rudolph is a guy Notre Dame football fans can be proud of landing. He’ll continue the great tradition of excellent offensive linemen at The University of Notre Dame.