Campus Insiders’ Notre Dame football insider Allen Pinkett discussed Tori Hunter Jr.’s emergence among the Fighting Irish wide receivers.
Brian Kelly is only a couple of weeks away from leading his Fighting Irish team into Austin to take on Charlie Strong’s Texas Longhorns.
While both DeShone Kizer and Malik Zaire are still battling it out for the starting quarterback position, Campus Insiders’ Notre Dame football insider Allen Pinkett believes it will end up being Kizer who gets the nod.
Regardless of whether it’s Kizer or Zaire who starts off under center, the Irish still face a pressing question: to whom will they throw?
Last year’s leading wide receiver, Will Fuller, is preparing for his first season in the NFL with the Houston Texans. Notre Dame’s second-leading receiver, Amir Carlisle, is also gone. In fact, of the team’s six leading pass-catchers from 2015, only one remains: Tori Hunter Jr.
Pinkett doesn’t see that as a huge problem, though, because he believes the senior receiver, son of former Major League Baseball outfielder Tori Hunter, will step up and lead the receiving core in 2016.
“Notre Dame’s gone through this before where new receivers came in and had to step up. You know, I think they do a great job of preparing these receivers,” Pinkett said. “The one guy I think you’re gonna’ hear a bunch from is Tori Hunter Jr. [He’s] the leading returning receiver — 28 catches last year for 363 yards. [He] had two touchdowns, but as the year long [he] became a real go-to guy. He’s got great versatility, and I think he’s a guy they can play inside and play outside. [He] had a great spring game. He’s a tough guy to cover.”
More often than not, Kizer or Zaire will be able to turn around and hand the ball off to a three-headed monster in Notre Dame’s backfield.
However, when it is time to keep the eyes down the field and launch the pigskin, look for Hunter to be on the other end of it.