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Daelin Hayes extends his eligibility another year after injury

| Friday, October 4, 2019

During No. 9 Notre Dame’s 35-20 win over now No. 23 Virginia on Saturday, senior defensive lineman Daelin Hayes suffered a torn labrum in his right shoulder. It was later announced that Hayes’ injury rendered him out for the season, which was a disappointing announcement for the Irish considering Hayes started his senior season with promise, recording six tackles, three tackles for a loss, one sack and one fumble recovery in his first three game appearances.

After his season ending injury was announced, Hayes informed the public of his intention to red shirt and return to Notre Dame for a fifth year to continue his college football career. He posted a picture on Instagram on Tuesday with the caption reading, “… It is in these lessons that I have found peace within my current circumstance. I am blessed to have had the opportunity to suit up for this University with the greatest brotherhood I’ve ever known. I am even more blessed to have been granted an opportunity to return next year for my fifth year.”

Hayes is expected to have surgery on his injured shoulder soon. Although independent of this injury, Hayes does have a history of shoulder problems, having sat out last season’s road matchup against Virginia Tech due to a shoulder ”stinger” as well as missing a significant amount of his senior season in high school due to a separated shoulder.

Hayes qualifies for a red shirt season on account of the fact that he only appeared in four games thus far, which allows him to qualify for a redshirt according to the NCAA’s somewhat recently modified rules. This is a relatively new rule, implemented at the start of last season, that has allowed teams greater flexibility to give underclassmen limited experience without burning a year of eligibility as well as provide a second chance to athletes who like Hayes injury themselves early in the season.

Throughout his career with the Irish, Hayes has distinguished himself as an immediate impact player, having appeared in at least 12 games in each of his first three seasons and entering the starting lineup by his sophomore season. His fumble return against Louisville earlier this season makes him one of eight players on the Irish roster this season to have recorded a fumble return.

A highly-touted recruit out of Belleville, Michigan, — a suburb of Detroit and Ann Arbor — Hayes earned a five-star recruit rating by Rivals and the No. 7 outside linebacker in his class. He was also rated the No. 31 prospect overall in his class. Hayes chose the Irish over powerhouses Ohio State, Michigan, Alabama and USC.

As it currently stands, Hayes has tallied 78 tackles, 14.5 tackles for a loss, six sacks and four fumble recoveries in his Notre Dame career.

In the absence of Hayes, senior defensive lineman Jamir Jones is expected to step up, joining fellow seniors Khalid Kareem and Julian Okwara on the line. Jones has been a consistent role player over the last three seasons with the Irish but has only appeared in two games so far this season — Georgia and Virginia. Against the Cavaliers on Saturday, he made the tackle that stripped Virginia’s senior quarterback Bryce Perkins of the ball, before junior defensive line Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa returned the ball 45 yards to the Virginia seven-yard line.

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