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Notre Dame Football

Notre Dame Vyper Cole Mullins Returning to the Field Sooner Than Later

February 19, 2024
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It was a long fall for Cole Mullins as he suffered a season-ending injury before his senior season.

The 6-foot-4, 239-pounder fractured his fibula but then also injured his ankle in the process, which meant Mullins couldn’t play his final season for Mill Creek (Ga.) 

Mullins arrived at Notre Dame in January and hit the ground running. 

“I’m not 100 percent going full speed,” Mullins said. “You can tell it’s not the same as when I’m healthy for my ankle, but in the weight room, I’m 100 percent. I’m doing all the workouts, as much as I can.” 

It’s been a series of baby steps and Mullins expects to be 100 percent for the start of spring ball next month. 

The road to this point hasn’t been easy, but the Georgia native stuck with the plan and can see the light at the end of the tunnel. 

“Mentally, it was rough for the first week,” explained Mullins. “More disappointed because there was nothing I could do about it. Physically, it was tough for the first two or three months because I couldn’t do anything moving-wise. That was tough. I’m at a point now where I’m confident going out on the field. There is still some pain, but it’s not bad.” 

Mullins will start his Notre Dame career at vyper and knows pending how he fills out, a move over to defensive end could be down the line in the future. 

In winter workouts, there isn’t much of a difference between the two other than the vypers are expected to run a little faster. 

“Vypers and strong-side, they’ll both do the sled and all that - punching bags,” stated Mullins. “When we do conditioning, they’ll have the vypers go with the linebackers for sprints.” 

The fit on the field is natural as Mullins is used to rushing the passer. Mullins tallied 11 sacks and 18.0 tackles for loss over his sophomore and junior years. 

Mullins has also been quickly embraced by the room and Jordan Botelho has taken him under his wing since arriving on campus. 

“When I got here I was just focused on getting settled in,” Mullins explained. “But you could tell JB - he’s been really reaching out for support.

“He’ll always stop and making sure I’m doing things right. He’s letting me know when we have meetings with the older guys.” 

And when it comes to his experience at Notre Dame, Mullins has experienced exactly what he thought it would be like when he committed. 

“It’s kind of what I expected,” said Mullins. “High intensity and all that. Just within the locker room, the relationships are so close with everyone. That’s big. Being on a strict schedule with football and classes, that’s the biggest thing for me.”

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