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Notre Dame Football

Notre Dame WR Kaleb Smith Announces Medical Retirement

April 15, 2023
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Receiver Kaleb Smith’s career at Notre Dame barely started as the graduate transfer announced he was medically retiring from the game on Saturday. 

“After countless hours of prayer and thought, I believe my time playing this game has passed,” he said in a statement he released. “What is more important to me now is my future after football and to achieve that, I must focus on my mental and physical health, which has taken a great toll throughout the years.”

The 6-foot-2, 222-pounder arrived in South Bend looking to enhance his game following his 2022 season at Virginia Tech where he recorded 37 receptions for 674 yards and three touchdowns.

“I feel like it reaches all of the goals and checks all of the boxes I was looking for coming into the process,” Smith told Irish Sports Daily prior to his commitment to Notre Dame in December. 

At Notre Dame, Smith chose to leave the sport not only before next weekend’s Blue-Gold Game, but before the Irish hit 10 practices this spring. In the open practice on April 1st, Smith primarily worked with the second and third team offense.

Notre Dame’s offensive line coach Joe Rudolph spoke highly of Smith before spring ball started as the two spent the 2022 season in Blacksburg. 

“Kaleb is probably one of the best guys I’ve seen in a one-on-one situations go up and make plays on the ball and contested catches,” stated Rudolph. “He made quite a few of those big plays for us at Virginia Tech. That stands out in a big way.” 

Smith chose Notre Dame over UCLA during his transfer process. 

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