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Notre Dame Football

Elite 8 | Most Important in 2020: Ade Ogundeji vs. Robert Hainsey

April 6, 2020

16 of Notre Dame most important players have been cut to eight after ISD members voted over the last week. 

Monday’s Elite 8 matchup is No. 3 defensive end Ade Ogundeji vs. No. 6 right tackle Robert Hainsey.

How we got here: No 3 defensive end Ade Ogundeji knocked off No. 14 defensive tackle Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa with 71 percent of ISD members votes. No. 6 Robert Hainsey defeated No. 11 true freshman running back Chris Tyree with 73.5 percent of the vote.

Robert Hainsey 
2019 Stats
: Hainsey didn't allow a sack in 252 pass plays in 2019 and returns after missing the final five games of last year with an injury. He brings 34 starts to the table as he enters his senior year. 

Matt Freeman on why Hainsey should advance: Right tackle might not be as sexy as left tackle, but consistency matters a lot on the offensive line. Hainsey has been the model of consistency over his career and that’s even more impressive when you consider he played all of 2018 with a nagging leg injury.

The Pittsburgh native is tough as nails and could play left tackle if you needed him there. Hainsey will also likely be two-time captain and that’s where the difference in this one is to me. Ade Ogundeji is extremely valuable to the success of 2020, however, leadership matters and Hainsey is not only valuable on the field, but his leadership will be crucial as the Irish battle the unique situation of being off-campus due to the coronavirus. 

Ade Ogundeji  
2019 Stats:
 26 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, 3.0 sacks, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery

Jamie Uyeyama on why Ogundeji should advance: His seeding might seem high for someone who has only 16 career Havoc plays, but 7.5 of those plays came in the final three games of the season. It isn't a coincidence that it happened when injuries gave him an opportunity to play more. 

The primary reason why the Notre Dame pass defense was so outstanding in 2019 (top-five in pass efficiency and yards per attempt) was the pass rush. Ogundeji became a big part of that in the last 1/4 of the year and he returns as the best pass rusher on the team this year.

In far less playing time, he has equaled the career sacks of Daelin Hayes and now Ogundeji will be a featured player rushing the passer on 3rd down. He's poised to explode for a monster season in his final year at Notre Dame.

Elite 8

No. 1 Ian Book vs. No. 8 Braden Lenzy: Winner - Ian Book 85%

No. 4 Liam Eichenberg vs. No. 5 Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah: Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah: 52.1%

No. 3 Ade Ogundeji vs. No. 6 Robert Hainsey: 

No. 2 Kyle Hamilton vs. No. 7 Kevin Austin Jr. 

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