Archive for the ‘Kerry Neal’ Category

Wu Am I? Greasy Choirboy & Tha Foolish Magician

June 30, 2009

Welcome to another edition of Wu Am I? for the 2009 season. Once again- I am trying to identify the 36 players of impact for the 2009 squad. So without any further bullshit, I open chambers 15 & 16…

Duval Kamara #18
Wide Receiver
6’5″ 220 lbs.
Junior
Hoboken, New Jersey
Wu Name: Greasy Choirboy

When it comes to Kamara, things are usually very quiet. He was a highly rated 4 star prospect in high school, yet his commitment to Notre Dame in early June of 2006 went largely uncelebrated. Kamara set freshman receiving records in 2007, but the team had one of the worst seasons in its entire existence and no one outside of the ND fanbase really took notice. As good as Duval was in his freshman year, he did regress quite a bit in 2008. When Kamara arrived to ND in the summer, he weighed more than what the staff wanted and was punished until he dropped the pounds. (He had to wear a lineman’s jersey). Duval never regained his freshman form and watched his minutes dwindle as fellow sophomore WR, Golden Tate, became a star and freshman phenom, Michael Floyd, skyrocketed to stardom himself as he crushed the records set by Kamara a year earlier.

Here comes 2009. With Tate and Floyd virtually locked in as the #1 & #2 WR’s, Kamara finds himself in a battle with two redshirt freshman ( John Goodman & Deion Walker), a senior (Robby Parris), and yet another bigtime freshman (Shaq Evans) for the “3rd” WR position. Notre Dame has arguably the best and deepest receiving corps in the country, so whoever emerges as the “3rd” WR will definitely have earned the job. My money is on Kamara. He has the experience and the skill set to set himself apart from the rest of the pack. It will ultimately come down to Duval and his ability to go up and get balls in traffic that has me believing in him. He will be pushed- but that push may be to the top of the mountain and not, to the bottom of it.

Kerry Neal #56
Defensive End
6’3″ 246 lbs.
Junior
Bunn, North Carolina
Wu Name: Tha Foolish Magician

Speaking of quiet. Kerry Neal was the first commitment for the incoming class of 2007. What sometimes happens in recruiting is that even though you may be rated very high (as Neal was) you don’t receive a lot of hype or attention. (Bad for business for the recruiting services.) What Neal lacked in flash during the recruiting period, he made up for once he got to South Bend. He played in all 12 games during his freshman year and started 5 of those games at outside linebacker. He was developing into a very nice pass rusher and showed good coverage skills on the outside. In 2008 Neal played almost the entire year with his hand on the ground at defensive end and was pushed around by offensive tackles, much bigger than him. The run support on the outside suffered.

I’m looking for a huge step forward for Neal in 2009. I think he had some injury issues with his shoulder in 2008 and he should be a little more healthy- plus if the Fighting Irish use more of a rotation system in 2009- he should stay fresh. Neal didn’t have huge stats his freshman year, so saying his sophomore year was a downturn when he switched positions doesn’t make all that much sense to me. I think Kerry has a swagger and a determination that is all his own, and we should expect more from him in 2009, as I believe he will deliver. Tenuta has been known to get the most out of his defensive ends in his scheme, and with new coach Randy Hart along to help- this could be a very big year for Neal.

Bring The Pain

June 30, 2008
In honor of TAH-NOO-TAH’s latest remarks, I give you the next two chambers to open in this ongoing series

Kerry Neal #56

Defensive End/Outside Linebacker
6’2″ 240 lbs.
Sophomore
Bunn, North Carolina
Wu-Name: Foolish Magician

Kerry Neal started it all. Coming from a recruiting class in 2007 that saw the commitment of Jimmy Clausen in up-scale fashion, Kerry Neal crept up on Irish fans like a Pantera song. He was the first player to commit that year and it took the recruiting services a while to catch up to the talent.

Right away in summer camp, Irish insiders started to notice a certain player from North Carolina playing his way into the depth chart. He not only did that, but he earned a starting job and by all accounts, he will be there for the next 3 years. He should thrive in the hybrid Tenuta/Brown system as he is very much a hybrid himself. Look for Neal to be an everydown player and absofuckinlutly menacing coming off of the edge. Devastating is what he could be along with his partner…

Linebacker
6’3″ 239 lbs.
Sophomore
Overland Park, Kansas
Wu-Name: 100-Watt Warlock
Brian came to Notre Dame as a consolation prize. The Irish lost out on a couple of higher profile recruits and had a couple of decommitments, so there was room on the roster for Brian late in the game. Brian’s father is a former fullback that played for the Irish in the 80’s and is a legacy that was almost lost as he was committed to Iowa. Consolation prize my ass. Brian did what Neal did and played himself right into the mix at linebacker and then became a starter.
Brian is another type of hybrid. Although he was used primarily on the outside last year, the coaches have moved him around a bit and it will not be a shock when we see Brian playing the Mike position. He plays with a tremendous amount of emotion, that if kept in check, should be a big lightning rod for the “D” this year. 100-Watt Warlock indeed. Brian is looking to fuck you up and bring some pain.