Notre Dame football expecting big things from freshmen safeties

  • Ben Minich, Adon Shuler and Luke Talich are poised for big Notre Dame football year.
  • All three freshman have impressed Marcus Freeman.

Notre Dame safety Adon Shuler (21) Wednesday, April 12, 2023, during spring football practice on the
Notre Dame safety Adon Shuler (21) Wednesday, April 12, 2023, during spring football practice on the / Greg Swiercz / USA TODAY NETWORK
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The Notre Dame football team is officially prepping for the 2024 season. Spring practice has started and there’s good news and bad news already flowing freely

Among the positive stories so far has been the way the new-look Fighting Irish defense is shaping up. There are a ton of reasons to like Al Golden’s squad. The veterans—Howard Cross, Xavier Watts, and the rest—are the biggest reasons why. A great defense could be even better, but they’re going to need the youngsters to contribute to take the next step.

Speaking during Saturday’s spring practice press conference, Notre Dame football head coach Marcus Freeman outlined some of the youngsters he sees making an impact in the coming season.

Specifically, safeties Ben Minich, Luke Talich and Adon Shuler have all impressed so far in practice. Freeman believes that all three are going to be contributors in 2024. How much of an impact can they have? 

"All three of those guys are going to help us in some way,” Freeman said.

Notre Dame football safeties will contribute early and often

It helps that Minich, Talich and Shuler all have the benefit of seeing the field in 2023, but keeping their freshman designation. The youth in the secondary is young indeed, but there’s enough experience there that they know how big time college football feels.

Minich only played in two games last year, tallying two tackles. However, he did appear in the Sun Bowl, which was certainly a game in which many future contributors showed what they could do.

Talich also appeared in two games, though he didn’t get into the bowl game. He did notch two tackles, including against Ohio State in their 17-14 loss. 

Shuler could be the odds-on favorite to make the most impact in 2024. He appeared in three games, had 6 tackles and three of those came in Notre Dame football’s bowl win over Oregon State.