Notre Dame officials had no official word on the absence of defensive end Travis Leitko from the most recently updated Irish football roster on the school's Web site.Granted Travis only logged 5 minutes of playing time at defensive end last season, but his size, hustle, and special teams presence will be missed. Some of the underclassmen will probably have to shuffle back and forth between defensive tackle and defensive end in order to create depth.
Weis declined to discuss dangling personnel issues as well on Tuesday.
"When we get started on August 8, there will be a roster out," he said. "That's who we're coaching. At every university there's going to be some things that are better left unsaid. Unlike a lot of other universities who like to make everything their business, there's a lot of private matters (at ND), and it doesn't really do any good talking about it."
Leitko, reached at his parents' home in The Woodlands, Texas, wasn't much more forthcoming.
"Honestly," he said, "I'm not really prepared for that right now. Hopefully, in a couple of weeks or so, more will come to light, but right now I don't feel comfortable discussing the situation."
Leitko was the jewel of the 2002 Irish recruiting class, ranked 22nd among the nation's high school prospects at any position. The senior-to-be, however, has played sparingly at ND. He recorded five tackles last season, giving him 17 for his career.
• Hedgemon not missing. Labrose is back from his year-long suspension.
• Freshmen got their numbers. Lou Somogyi on BGI did a nice piece referencing the other famous names from the past wore the numbers now assigned to the class of 2009. Here's the short hand version so you can get your NCAA Football 2006 roster up to date. Also included are their listed position and height and weight. Keeping with the scrapbook nature of this blog, it should be fun to see how much this information changes in four years. (Let the depth chart engineering begin...)
|1 D.J. Hord (wide receiver - 6'2 185) |
6 Ray Herring (defensive back - 5'11 190)
11 David Grimes (wide receiver - 5'10 165)
13 Evan Sharpley (quarterback - 6'2 212)
27 David Bruton (defensive back - 6'1 185)
28 Kyle McCarthy (defensive back - 6'0 185)
41 Scott Smith (linebacker - 6'3 235)
42 Kevin Washington (linebacker - 6'1 215)
|44 Asaph Schwapp (fullback - 6'2 230) |
48 Steve Quinn (linebacker - 6'3 215)
72 Paul Duncan (offensive line - 6'7 270
77 Mike Turkovich (offensive line - 6'7 290)
85 Joey Hiben (tight end - 6'4 248)
92 Derrell Hand (defensive line - 6'3 300)
96 Pat Kuntz (defensive line - 6'2 261)
• Weight gain. As with the defensive line, building depth on the offensive line will be a key factor this season. And while it's most likely that incoming OL Paul Duncan and Mike Turkovich will need a year in the weight room before seeing the playing field, it seems weight gain shouldn't be too much of an issue. Turkovich, in particular, appears to have a head start by coming in at 6'7" 290lbs, which is about 45lbs heavier than his listed weight during recruitment. And Duncan isn't a slouch either at 6'7" 270lbs. Getting some game experience this year would be a great advantage for 2006 and 2007 when the OL depth drops to nearly nothing.
• Gorski made the roster as a preferred walk-on. For those that missed it, here's a quick rundown on who Dan Gorski is. And judging from the roster, another preferred freshman walk-on is on the team in the form of Jeff Tisak. Not much info about him, but Google shows he's a 6'5", 305lb offensive lineman from Minnesota. Interestingly, he finished 9th in shot-put in the Minnesota high school track and field state championships. That's the same shot-put competition that Joey Hiben won.