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Sport Notre Dame 99-to-0: No. 14 Kyle Hamilton, junior safety, preseason All-American, top 2022 draft prospect

19:02  23 july  2021
19:02  23 july  2021 Source:   nbcsports.com

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Listed measurements: 6-foot-4, 219 pounds. 2021-22 year, eligibility: A junior, Hamilton has three seasons of eligibility remaining thanks to the universal pandemic eligibility waiver, but by no means should anyone imagine he will use more than one of those years. Depth Chart: Hamilton will start for Notre Dame at safety, and he will not come off the field in any package except the one designed to enjoy blowouts. Recruiting: The consensus four-star prospect, All-American and 2018 USA Today second-team All-American turned down Clemson, Georgia, Michigan and Ohio State to sign with Notre Dame. The No. 7 safety in the country and No. 75 overall recruit in the class, per rivals.com, Hamilton did not become a hyped four-star prospect until relatively late in the cycle, a strong junior season and subsequent camp circuit earning him the eventual recognition.

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a group of football players on the field © Getty Images

Despite that late recruiting rise, the Irish pursued Hamilton relatively early in the cycle, before that ratings bump, thanks to a tip from a friend of former safeties coach Terry Joseph when he was still coaching at North Carolina, closer to Hamilton’s home of Atlanta. Joseph arrived at Notre Dame in the winter of 2017 and began his pursuit of Hamilton in earnest halfway through Hamilton’s junior year. He had shined on the field, but that camp boost had not yet occurred.

Hamilton has been a fit with the Irish in nearly every regard, so maybe he would have headed to South Bend regardless, but Notre Dame’s early arrival in his consideration certainly helped the cause.

NAME, IMAGE, LIKENESS Of the entire Irish roster, Hamilton was positioned to be the biggest beneficiary of name, image and likeness rights this month, and he has indeed followed through on those possibilities. The preseason All-American has launched a podcast with a few teammates, will hold a youth football camp, has a sponsorship deal with apparel company Rhoback, offers Cameo videos for a mere $49, and that list is not comprehensive.

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But the top item Hamilton has done is launch his own line of apparel, sporting a logo blending his initials with his uniform number.

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Hamilton will assuredly continue to profit off his name, image and likeness, and rightfully so. As his draft prospects become more solidified, a few national brands should even begin to seek him out.

CAREER TO DATE Hamilton did not enroll early at Notre Dame, but within his first few preseason practices, he made it clear he did not need that head start. The stories from his first preseason with the Irish border on myth, intercepting enough passes that the unofficial counts varied from four to 10. Fittingly, his first snap at Notre Dame Stadium resulted in an interception returned for a touchdown.

Myth had immediately become reality.

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Hamilton played in all 13 games as a freshman, the third safety behind seniors Alohi Gilman and Jalen Elliott, providing them both rest and flexibility. He moved into a starting role in 2020 and led the Irish in tackles, but made only one interception, the result of opposing quarterbacks knowing better than to test the All-American. On 580 snaps last season, quarterbacks threw toward Hamilton 31 times, on which he gave up 18 catches for 138 yards, a 4.45 yards per attempt average.

2019: 13 games; 41 tackles with one for loss, four interceptions and 10 passes defended. 2020: 11 games; 63 tackles with 4.5 for loss, one interception and seven passes defended.

QUOTES New Notre Dame defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman undoubtedly did not choose the Irish over LSU this offseason solely because of Hamilton, but having a first-team All-American anchoring the back end of your defense in your first season at a new stop is obviously a nice safety net, pun only somewhat intended.

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“You look at Kyle and you can tell the skill set that he brings,” Freeman said in April. “The length he brings to our defense is second-to-none. You can watch the film from last year, but until you see this guy live and in-person, you don’t realize how long and how much room and area and space he can take up.”

But Hamilton has not yet played in front of Freeman. Those assessments were made simply by walking by Hamilton, not by seeing him in practice. The star was held out all spring as he recovered from an ankle surgery, more a precaution than an actual need to sideline him.

“The hardest thing for him is we have to continue to push him when he’s not practicing,” Freeman said. “… He’s a film junkie. He and [safeties coach Chris] O’Leary are always in there watching film. He’s always trying to find ways to improve. He’s like a coach sometimes back there. I see him coaching those young safeties up. That’s what he’s got to do.”

To be clear, Hamilton was running by the end of spring practices and will be full-go when the preseason commences.

Inside the Irish

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2021 OUTLOOK Consensus and unanimous statuses are not tracked in the preseason, but suffice it to say, Hamilton is a preseason first-team All-American, and if he plays to form, he should end up a unanimous first-team All-American at season’s end.

Notre Dame 99-to-0: No. 32 Prince Kollie, freshman linebacker, Butkus Award winner

  Notre Dame 99-to-0: No. 32 Prince Kollie, freshman linebacker, Butkus Award winner Considered perhaps the next great Irish linebacker, freshman Prince Kollie arrives at Notre Dame with time to grow into those expectations.But Lea went out of his way to reassure Kollie as he put together his own first recruiting class with the Commodores, making it clear to the Butkus Award winner (best high school linebacker) that Notre Dame was where he belonged.

He is one of the best defenders in the country, and Freeman and Notre Dame will rely on him to play as such. Hamilton’s length and range in the defensive backfield provides flexibility to Freeman’s defense that may make up for some inconsistencies and development elsewhere.

That multitude of duties awaiting Hamilton make projecting his stats a difficult endeavor, so let’s instead simply say, Hamilton will impact 13 games this season, one way or another.

DOWN THE ROAD Let’s keep this short and sweet and to the point: Barring injury, Hamilton will be no lower than a top-10 pick this spring, and it is more likely he is within the top five than not.

NOTRE DAME 99-TO-0

Let’s try this again

No. 99 Rylie Mills, sophomore defensive tackle

No. 98 Alexander Ehrensberger, sophomore defensive end

No. 97 Gabriel Rubio, early-enrolled freshman defensive tackle the size of a Volkswagen

No. 95 Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa, fifth-year defensive tackle-turned-end

No. 92 Aidan Keanaaina, sophomore defensive tackle

No. 88 Mitchell Evans, early-enrolled freshman tight end, a former high school quarterback

No. 87 Michael Mayer, star sophomore tight end and lead offensive weapon

No. 85 George Takacs, senior tight end, ‘152 years old’

No. 84 Kevin Bauman, sophomore tight end

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No. 82 Xavier Watts, sophomore receiver

No. 81 Jay Brunelle, speedy sophomore receiver

No. 80 Cane Berrong, early-enrolled freshman tight end

No. 79 Tosh Baker, sophomore offensive tackle

No. 78 Pat Coogan, incoming freshman center

No. 77 Quinn Carroll, junior offensive lineman

No. 76 Joe Alt, incoming and towering freshman offensive lineman

No. 75 Josh Lugg, fifth-year right tackle, finally a starter

No. 73 Andrew Kristofic, junior offensive tackle, possible backup center

No. 72 Caleb Johnson, early-enrolled offensive tackle, former Auburn commit

No. 70 Hunter Spears, junior offensive guard, former defensive tackle

No. 68 Michael Carmody, sophomore offensive tackle

No. 62 Marshall guard Cain Madden transfers to Notre Dame, likely 2021 starter

No. 57 Jayson Ademilola, senior defensive tackle

No. 56 John Dirksen, senior reserve offensive lineman

No. 56 Howard Cross, junior defensive tackle

No. 55 Jarrett Patterson, the best Irish offensive lineman

No. 54 Jacob Lacey, junior defensive tackle

No. 54 Blake Fisher, early-enrolled freshman left tackle, starter?

No. 52 Zeke Correll, junior, starting center

No. 52 Bo Bauer, senior linebacker, #BeADog

No. 50 Rocco Spindler, early-enrolled freshman offensive guard

No. 48 Will Schweitzer, early-enrolled freshman defensive end

No. 44 Devin Aupiu, early-enrolled freshman defensive end

No. 44 Alex Peitsch and No. 65 Michael Vinson, Irish long snappers, both needed

No. 41 Kurt Hinish, fifth-year defensive tackle, eventual record-holder in games played

No. 40 Drew White, fifth-year linebacker, three-year starter

No. 39 Jonathan Doerer, fifth-year kicker, using the pandemic exception

No. 38 Jason Onye, incoming and raw freshman defensive end

No. 37 Joshua Bryan, incoming freshman kicker

No. 35 Marist Liufau, junior Hawaiian linebacker

No. 34 Osita Ekwonu, junior defensive end

No. 33 Shayne Simon, senior linebacker

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No. 29 Matt Salerno, senior punt returner, walk-on

No. 28 TaRiq Bracy, senior cornerback, possible nickel back

No. 27 JD Bertrand, junior linebacker

No. 26 Clarence Lewis, sophomore cornerback, second-year starter

No. 25 Philip Riley, early-enrolled freshman cornerback

No. 25 Chris Tyree, speedy sophomore running back

No. 24 Jack Kiser, junior linebacker, onetime pandemic hero

No. 23 Litchfield Ajavon, junior safety

No. 23 Kyren Williams, junior running back

No. 22 Logan Diggs, incoming freshman running back

No. 22 Chance Tucker, freshman cornerback

No. 21 Lorenzo Styles, early-enrolled freshman receiver

No. 21 Caleb Offord, sophomore cornerback

No. 20 C’Bo Flemister, senior running back, coming off an offseason with a smirch

No. 20 Justin Walters, early-enrolled freshman safety and likely early special teams contributor

No. 19 Jay Bramblett, junior punter

No. 19 Justin Ademilola, senior defensive end

No. 18 Joe Wilkins Jr., senior receiver, team favorite

No. 18 Nana Osafo-Mensah, junior defensive end, coming back from a knee injury

No. 17 Jack Coan, graduate quarterback, Wisconsin transfer

No. 17 Jordan Botelho, sophomore defensive end, full-speed at all times

No. 16 Deion Colzie, incoming freshman receiver with both speed and leaping height

No. 16 KJ Wallace, junior safety, possible starting nickel back

No. 15 Ryan Barnes, early-enrolled freshman cornerback

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Notre Dame 99-to-0: No. 14 Kyle Hamilton, junior safety, preseason All-American, top 2022 draft prospect originally appeared on NBCSports.com

Top 10 Players to Watch at the Hlinka-Gretzky Cup .
The 2022 and 2023 NHL drafts are looking mighty strong at the top, and many of the best prospects will be competing in the Hlinka-Gretzky Cup over the next weekend. Here are the prospects you need to know. © Provided by Hockey News on Sports Illustrated Matvei Michkov The hockey season never sleeps. After many teams completed U-20 camps over the last week, the attention turns to the eight-team Hlinka Gretzky Cup, an early look at the top U-18 talent for the upcoming season. The tournament wasn't held last summer but Russia won the last event held back in 2019.

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