If you like to chug the kool-aid there’s no better day than the opening practice of fall camp, or whenever the media gets its first full length viewing of the Fighting Irish. Think about watching 85+ football players moving all over the place and trying to judge them, yet we get tons of comments all over the place unsurprisingly almost always positive!

That’s okay, it’s a time to be excited. Let’s look at the lineups for the first practice on Tuesday afternoon from Culver Academies.

First-Team Offense

QB – Brandon Wimbush
RB – Josh Adams
W-WR – Equanimeous St. Brown
Z- WR – Chase Claypool
X-WR – Cameron Smith
TE – Durham Smythe/Alizé Mack
LT – Mike McGlinchy
LG – Quenton Nelson
C – Sam Mustipher
RG – Alex Bars
RT – Tommy Kraemer

Everything is as expected here with the lone exception of Arizona State grad transfer Cam Smith running with starters for practice one. There’s lots of talk about Smith’s familiarity with the offense due to his time in the desert while being coached by Del Alexander and Chip Long but this probably short changes him a bit in a way. He must have been working hard and looking quite good during summer workouts. It’s a long way to go to keep this spot, though.

The Chase Claypool experiment in the slot continues from the spring!

Second-Team Offense

QB – Ian Book
RB – Dexter Williams
W-WR – Miles Boykin
Z-WR – Freddy Canteen
X-WR – Chris Finke
TE – Nic Weishar
LT – Robert Hainsey
LG – Hunter Bivin
C – Trevor Ruhland
RG – Aaron Banks
RT – Liam Eichenberg

Several months ago it was looking like the Irish receiving corps was going to be quite thin. Fast forward to today and there’s quite a bit of bodies and a bevy of competition. With former Wolverine Canteen coming in on the two-deep that’s an impressive start for both new transfers and not great news for guys below them.

I’ve mentioned this before but with the favored status (for now) of the receiver transfers it just reinforces how we will need to see how the math plays out for snaps on offense. Right now, C.J. Sanders has gone from starter in the past to third team. The highly recruited Javon McKinley is also third team. Plus, the weirdness surrounding Kevin Stepherson continues…yup third team as well.

Even if Stepherson comes back to start again at some point (pretty likely) that will just push someone down further. If there’s a real commitment to playing multiple tight ends even being second-string at receiver could lead to very few snaps.

It’s not likely that Ruhland is actually the backup center but it’s interesting to see him at the position to start camp. I don’t know how many practices he’s participated in but I’m pretty sure Jimmy Byrne has never taken a rep with the second-team or higher. That’s a long time never even having hope to play.

First-Team Defense

SDE – Jay Hayes
DT – Jonathan Bonner
NG – Jerry Tillery
WDE – Daelin Hayes
BUCK – Greer Martini
MIKE – Nyles Morgan
ROVER – Drue Tranquill
CB – Julian Love
FS – Devin Studstill
SS – Jalen Elliott
CB – Nick Watkins

This is the exact same starting lineup from the spring with the exception of the missing Nick Coleman who was nursing an ankle injury and didn’t fully participate.

Second-Team Defense

SDE – Khalid Kareem
DT – Micah Dew-Treadway
NG – Brandon Tiassum
WDE – Andrew Trumbetti
BUCK – Te’von Coney
MIKE – Jon Jones
ROVER – Asmar Bilal
CB – Donte Vaughn
FS – Alohi Gilman
SS – Isaiah Robertson
CB – Shaun Crawford

Similarly, there weren’t many shake ups with the second team either as the likes of Tiassum and Dew-Treadway are still hanging around with the backups but we’ll see how long that lasts. They will be pushed immensely by younger players.

During yesterday’s presser Brian Kelly mentioned that Trumbetti (spent spring on the strong-side) will play both sides of the line and is back at his more familiar weak-side spot for now. Since he switched sides we now have Kareem in the two-deep. He’ll be someone to keep an eye on–he was pretty highly rated but has had a really quiet first year on campus so far.

Navy transfer Alohi Gilman automatically in the two-deep is a good sign, either for his skill and/or his possible ability to be eligible this season. I’ll be super curious to see who gets bumped when Coleman comes back healthy, will it be the true freshman Robertson for the time being?

In the injury department sophomore corner Troy Pride had an issue with his hamstring–no word yet how serious it is after day one. Either way, it’s not a great sign for someone who was trending in the direction of being the 5th and last corner on the depth chart and quite a distance’s away from Donte Vaughn for the fourth spot.