Notre Dame Football

Robert Hainsey Primed To Carry On Offensive Line Tradition

August 16, 2019
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Notre Dame naming an offensive lineman a captain is basically a given and Robert Hainsey will step into that role this season.
 
The junior from Pennsylvania was named one of seven captains last week by Notre Dame football coach Brian Kelly and Hainsey wasn’t too fired up as he knows the work is just beginning.
 
“It’s an honor to be thought of that highly and be highly regard by my teammates and staff,” stated Hainsey. “I intend to lead them to the best of my ability like I always have and always will. It’s a pleasure to be in a room with guys like we have who care so much and work so hard. It makes me work even harder and be the best person I can be every day.”
 
In Hainsey’s case, he’ll have a chance to be a two-time captain at Notre Dame.
 
“It’s a great tradition of leadership within our group,” said Hainsey. “I’ve played with Mike (McGlinchey), Q (Quenton Nelson), Alex (Bars) and Sam (Mustipher). All four guys taught me a ton. Hunter Bivin is a great guy to still have around and he’s taught me how to lead since I was younger. You look at who those guys played with – Zack Martin, Nick Martin, Chris Watt and Ronnie Stanley. They were able to learn from them and I got to learn from these guys.
 
“It’s a special thing to continue that tradition.”
 
As the 2019 opener approaches, Hainsey looks bigger physically and is playing stronger. Director of Football Performance Matt Balis continues to make strides with players in year three and Hainsey gave him all the credit.
 
“Hats off to Coach Balis and the strength staff,” Hainsey explained. “I think they are the best in the country. I know a lot of friends at other schools who don’t do the things we do or as hard as we do it. Those guys push you to your limits and make you better players for it. I’ve grown a lot and matured into my body more this offseason. It’s something I’ll keep working on to get bigger and stronger.”
 
The added strength will help Hainsey once the season starts, but it’s currently helping him in practice as he faces the likes of Khalid Kareem and Julian Okwara on a daily basis.  
 
“We have some of the best defensive ends in the county and there is no secret about that,” Hainsey said. “It’s a blast going against those guys in practice. You get work every day and they make you better. They do things where if they get me, then I realize it’s something I need to work on and I’ll stay after to work on it.  
 
“It’s a great way to learn my weaknesses from guys like that because if I learn them now and can correct them, then they won’t be a problem come September.”

 
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