Three very overlooked Notre Dame football players


You wouldn’t think a star Notre Dame football player would fly under the radar, but there are actually three which don’t get a ton of attention despite their talents and abilities. FOX Sports did a college football preview press call today, and Notre Dame football icon Brady Quinn was one of the participants.

I asked Quinn for his thoughts on ND’s prospects this season, as well as some general impressions of DL Sheldon Day and OL Ronnie Stanley and Nick Martin. He joked about how it took 20 minutes into the call for someone to bring up Notre Dame. (The podcast of Quinn’s segment is embedded below, you can scroll down to hear it)

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Notre Dame’s Ronnie Stanley looking like a top 10 pick


Many NFL scouting services/media outlets/draftniks etc. rate Notre Dame‘s  Ronnie Stanley as the top offensive tackle prospect in the 2016 NFL Draft class and a near certain top ten overall pick. Many analysts see Stanley playing himself into top five overall selection territory come April.

Given how much extra value the NFL places on left tackles these days (i.e. the ability to protect the quarterback’s blind side, in a pass-oriented era), Stanley’s stock will rise further with each dominant performance he puts in at LT.

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Notre Dame Stadium to add JUMBOTRON by 2017


Late December back in 2013, what a very special time for The Sports Bank, as we remember what an article (or two that we posted). Big apologies to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons for the lede. We were the first to report that Notre Dame athletics had signed a new deal to make Under Armour their new apparel partner (here’s a link to that).

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Notre Dame QB Malik Zaire doesn’t like the term “dual threat”


Notre Dame quarterback Malik Zaire has no use for your usage of the “dual threat” category/designation. The term originated somewhere in the media and/or scouting world a long time ago, but during this past decade it’s become pervasive. It’s not just a cliche or a buzzword anymore, it’s a categorical definition now.

It’s not a Malik Zaire catch-phrase however.

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Will Fuller is Notre Dame’s best shot at the Heisman

will fuller

Notre Dame has an illustrious history of producing Heisman Trophy winners. Every year, someone prominent in the national media will make sure to put a Fighting Irish player in the discussion, but during Brian Kelly’s regime, only one player was a finalist for the most recognizable individual award in sports. And he actually played defense.

Kelly is certainly not interested in trying to start up any Heisman campaigns for any of his players. However, he was pressed by a reporter into mentioning somebody, and that somebody is wide receiver Will Fuller.

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Cornerback KeiVarae Russell won Notre Dame Media Day


Just hours before Notre Dame Media Day began, the school informed the media which 10 specific players would be appearing and conversing with the media. When we saw KeiVarae Russell listed as one of those ten players, we knew that his NCAA eligibility was reinstated. Russell was suspended and missed all of 2014, but he promised he would return to South Bend and finish school.

KeiVarae had already been practicing this summer and Notre Dame Coach Brian Kelly had been very positive about the prospects of Russell’s return in recent media opportunities. . Today however he made it official. Working the announcement in when answering a general question about the defense overall.

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2015 Notre Dame football is national title or bust


“We talk in terms of championships, absolutely,” Notre Dame football Coach Brian Kelly said in response to a reporter question this summer.

“For us to be a championship football team there has to be attention to detail.  For us to be a championship football team you have to hold each other accountable.  For us to be a championship football team, we talk in those terms every single day,” he continued.

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Jarron Jones: how will Notre Dame replace him?


Notre Dame starting defensive tackle Jarron Jones is now out for the season due to damage to his medial collateral ligament. As the video below tells us, that’s a huge loss. Although you don’t need to be a “rocket surgeon” to realize that. (See what I did there, combining the two intellectual metaphor cliches “brain surgeon” and “rocket scientist.”

DT Sheldon Day-Sr, is the team’s best interior defensive player, so the video above it completely wrong with their analysis claiming that Jarron Jones is the best interior player on ND’s defensive line. However, any time you lose a starter for the whole season, at a position lacking depth to begin with, it’s a tough blow.

I don’t doubt the high NFL Draft stock value that Day is getting, but I just don’t see it. I don’t get it at all. The NFL Draft overvalues pass rushers above anything else and Day had just one sack last year. He’s also a bit of a tweener for the next level. Notre Dame football goes nowhere this season unless this defense figures out how to start generating a legit pass rush. Day needs to be the guy who sets the standard in getting that done, especially now with Jones out of commission.

So the new starter in Jones’ absence could be sophomore Daniel Cage, Sophomore Jay Hayes or freshman Jerry Tillery. They’re the next three highest ranked DTs on the ND depth chart.

Paul M. Banks owns, operates and writes The Sports, which is part of the FOX Sports Engage Network.Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, currently contributes to the Chicago Tribune RedEye edition. He also appears regularly on numerous talk radio stations all across the country. Catch him Tuesdays on KOZN 1620 The Zone.

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Mike Brey on his ESPN announcing experience (podcast)

mike brey

When Mike Brey is done coaching at Notre Dame (he has seven years left on the contract extension he got in 2012) he may go into broadcasting. A media career could be in the works post coaching retirement and he got his first taste of doing analyst work tonight for ESPNU. Brey called “The Basketball Tournament” live from DePaul’s on campus gym in Chicago.

The returning champs and overwhelming favorite of TBT are the “Notre Dame Fighting Alumni” led by Ben Hansbrough, Tim Abromaitis, Eric Atkins, Ty Nash and many more. Brey called their thrilling come from behind victory over the Midwest Dream team tonight on ESPNU. After ward I had an exclusive conversation with him about the experience.

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Notre Dame Football: Never Too Early Season Preview

malik zaire notre dame football

Season three of “Inside Amy Schumer” was a lot like the 2014 Notre Dame football season- started out very strong, collapsed in the middle, limped toward the end. And like Amy Schumer herself, ND Football is poised for bigger and better things. Which will in turn attract even more publicity and hence make them more polarizing.

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Lindsay McCormick previews “The Basketball Tournament”


Lindsay McCormick is a TV personality from Houston who has appeared on “ESPN Streak for the Cash” and “ESPN College Pick’em” on She began her media career at Auburn covering the football team and then moved on to covering the NFL for ESPN The Magazine after graduation.

On Thursday night, McCormick will be doing sideline for The Basketball Tournament . It’s TBT on Throwback Thursday, as “The Basketball Tournament” is the event’s official name. We spoke with McCormick to preview TBT, an open-application tourney with a $1 million prize. Games will be televised July 23 and 25 on ESPNU and August 1-2 on ESPN.

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2016 NBA Mock Draft (6/29/15)

NBA-mock-Draft-sacramento kings

Here is The Sports Bank’s extremely early 2016 NBA Mock Draft.  By the way, The Sports Bank had the most accurate NBA Mock Draft in both 2011 and 2012 along with the second most accurate mock in 2013.

Be sure to check out our 2016 NFL mock draft.

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