Notre Dame Fighting Irish News: Audric Estime more dominant than you realize, more

PFF recently put out a list of the best running backs in 2023 and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish star was at the top of the rankings.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish running back Audric Estime
Notre Dame Fighting Irish running back Audric Estime / Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Talk to most Notre Dame Fighting Irish fans and they’ll tell you that Audric Estime was criminally underrated in 2023. Now it turns out that they can use one of the premiere player rating services in the country as part of their evidence.

Estime, who announced he was going pro earlier this winter, finished the season some pretty insane rushing numbers, but somehow managed to do so rather quietly. Keep in mind that despite posting 1,341 yards on the ground and 18 touchdowns, there was never any mention of the Notre Dame football star in Heisman talks.

One could say it was one of the quietest insanely good seasons a running back has had for a major university in quite some time. Now the former Fighting Irish star is finally getting his due as Pro Football Focus released its list of the top running backs among the Power 5 programs.

Audric Estime earned at spot right at the top of the list with a 94.2 overall rating. He is in fact the only P5 running back in the country to earn a grade higher than 92. And now some lucky NFL team is going to be able to add them to their roster.

The man known as “Baby Bus” - for his similarities to former Notre Dame Fighting Irish running back Jerome Bettis -  didn’t get the recognition he deserved in 2023, but he might become quite the household name next season in the NFL.

More Notre Dame Fighting Irish news

  • Hannah Hidalgo’s incredible freshman season continues. The Notre Dame women’s basketball star continues to rack up ACC awards in her rookie campaign and was recently named to the Wooden Award Midseason Top 25 watch list. The Wooden Award is chosen at the end of the year and honors the top player in the sport.
  • Kiki Van Zanten had herself a nice little season, and career for the women’s soccer team. That was capped off on Friday with her selection by the Houston Dash in the National Women’s Soccer League 2024 Draft.
  • One team that is short on good news these days is the Notre Dame Fighting Irish hockey team. The squad dropped it’s third straight game in a row on Friday night. This time, the Irish lost to Ohio State, 3-2 and the loss put Notre Dame hockey under .500 on the season at 10-11-2.
  • One man you can’t pin the Irish hockey struggles on is netminder Ryan Bischel. For the second straight year, Bischel was named to the Mike Richter award watch list thanks to posting the fourth-best save percentage in the nation, at .926, while ranking second in the Big Ten Conference. His 654 saves are second-best in the country while owning a .243 goals-against average. The Mike Richter award honors the best goaltender in college hockey.