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Notre Dame Football

ISD Sweet 16 | Most Important in 2020: No. 8 vs. No. 9

March 24, 2020
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It's Sweet 16 week! 

Well, at least for Irish Sports Daily. 

Jamie and Matt came up and seeded the 16 most important players to Notre Dame's 2020 campaign and we're giving ISD members the chance to advance them in a single-elimination tournament. 

No. 1 Quarterback Ian Book defeated No. 16 linebacker Drew White in Monday’s matchup.

Tuesday’s matchup is No. 8 receiver Braden Lenzy vs. No. 9 defensive end Daelin Hayes. 

Braden Lenzy
2019 Stats
: 11 receptions for 254 yards and two touchdowns. 13 rushes for 200 yards and two touchdowns. Three kick returns for 71 yards.

Why he is the No. 8 seed: Notre Dame needs explosive playmakers and Lenzy will be counted to do that in the pass and run game in 2020. Lenzy proved he was not only ready for the bright lights, but made game-changing plays. The Oregon native also proved he could be good in run blocking, which was a pleasant surprise. 

2020 will be about proving he can rip off big plays on a consistent basis and being able to handle a more significant workload. 

Lenzy might have been ranked a little higher, but Notre Dame does have several intriguing options in the receiver room. 

Why Lenzy should advance: Do you like big and exciting plays? Vote Lenzy. 

Daelin Hayes 
2019 Stats:
 Six tackles, 3.0 tackles for loss, one sack and one fumble recovery. 

Why he is the No. 9 seed: Hayes shouldn’t be on this list as he suffered a torn labrum in week four and allowed him to redshirt a year ago. If the injury never happened, Hayes would be training for the NFL. 

The injury does give cause for concern, but Hayes was on pace for a big year in 2019. He had arguably been more consistent than Julian Okwara and looked like a completely different player before the injury. 

Ade Ogundeji returning also caused Hayes to maybe fall a little bit along with quality depth behind him at the Vyper position. 

Why White should advance: Braden Lenzy is a big play waiting to happen, but Notre Dame fans seem to enjoy sacks as well. 

No. 1 vs. No 16: Winner Ian Book with 62% of the vote. 

 
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