“Man this was the hardest decision Ive made in my life, so much respect for both programs! I’ve decided to play my next 4 years at the University of Notre Dame! I have so much respect for (Purdue) Coach Hazell I’ve never met someone with such high character. However, I’m ecstatic to go play for coach Kelly at the university of Notre Dame! Go Irish!” Drue Tranquill on his decision to play for the Irish.
Words of excitement can't show actual heart and drive.
But if these statements translate into excitement on the field- Irish faithful will have perhaps one of it's most exciting players in recent years when incoming freshman Drue Tranquill arrives in South Bend.
The 6'3" 215 recruited linebacker may be a project of sorts from the standpoint that Coach Brian Kelly will have a versatile player that can play not only on defense- but will play special teams as well.
Tranquill recorded 75 tackles his senior year with a solo total of 62 at Fort Waynes Caroll High.
No doubt he can play on defense and may see early rotation in 2014 in an area the Irish will need improvement on after 2013 performances saw short passing routes become long gaines.
Irish fans will recall the play of OU's Sterling Shephard in 2013 in South Bend- a sub par receiver for the Sooners-when he turned a simple 5 yard catch into a long touchdown.
A player in position like Tranquill would have handedly kept that from happening with his speed.
And his self proclaimed sub 4.5 times will no doubt lend oppurtunity in the return game- another area of weakness for Notre Dame of late.
If fans are looking for a player that reminds them of his abilities- look no further than Tom Zbikowski.
The future is limitless for Tranquill.
And with the tweeking of positions like Jaylon Smith to inside linebacker for the defense- the hunt is on for new defensive coach Brian VanGorder and players he can put on the field now-especially those like Tranquill who are interchangeable.