Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Notre Dame Football Position Preview: Fullback

Previously Covered
Running Back
Wide Receiver
Defensive Line

Spotlight: Luke Schmidt


Also Returning: Asaph Schwapp

Lost: Dex Cure, Mike Narvaez (graduation)

Gained: Steve Paskorz (position change), Joe Vittoria (walk-on)

Now I'm just all over the place. I skipped the fullback position in my personal position order, so now I need to backtrack.

Luke Schmidt has not seen much action in his Notre Dame career. He's seen so little action, in fact, that a Google image search doesn't return any shots of him playing in an Irish uniform. Schmidt spent time as both a fullback and a tight end in the spring, and that versatility will only help him to get on the field more. One would assume he'll take on a H-back type role, blocking in both run and pass formations. Perhaps he'll be the designated blocking tight end on passing plays, freeing the other tight ends to run routes.

Or perhaps Schmidt will take on the role of "offensive" fullback, a la Rashon Powers-Neal in 2005. Notre Dame hasn't seen an offensive threat from the fullback position since RPN, and perhaps Schmidt is the the guy. Asaph Schwapp certainly isn't much of an offensive threat. Of course, some would argue that he isn't much of a blocking threat either. But for better or for worse, Schwapp is once again the team's starter.

Finally, Steve Paskorz comes over from linebacker. Paskorz played both linebacker and running back in high school, so it will be interesting to see if he gets any touches. Or if he, like Junior Jabbie last year, becomes the blocking back on third down passing situations. Then again, Jabbie was an experienced senior at that point, and Paskorz is just a sophomore.