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Notre Dame names 2020 football captains

| Wednesday, September 9, 2020

In a Twitter post Tuesday afternoon, Notre Dame announced its captains for the 2020 football season. Graduate student quarterback Ian Book, senior offensive tackle Robert Hainsey, graduate student cornerback/safety Shaun Crawford and graduate student defensive ends Daelin Hayes and Ade Ogundeji will bear a “C on their uniforms in the upcoming year. Book and Hainsey both served as captains last season, along with safeties Aloha Gilman and Jalen Elliot, defensive ends Khalid Kareem and Julian Okwara and slot receiver Chris Finke.

Book has led the Irish as the first-string signal-caller since taking over duties from Brandon Wimbush in the fourth game of Notre Dame’s 2018 season. He started one game against North Carolina as a sophomore in 2017 after Wimbush was injured and led the Irish to a win.

Following his replacement of Wimbush in 2018, Book led Notre Dame to an 8-0 record the remainder of the regular season — with Wimbush starting senior night against Florida State after Book was injured the prior week against Northwestern — and a berth in the College Football Playoff, where the Irish fell 30-3 to Clemson. For his career he is 20-3 as a starter and has passed for 6,123 yards and 57 touchdowns and rushed for 1,054 yards and four scores.

Hainsey has been a mainstay on the offensive line since his freshman campaign in 2017, playing alongside Irish All-Americans Mike McGlinchey and Quentin Nelson on a Joe Moore Award-winning unit. He has played in 34 career games with 20 starts. He did not allow a sack in over 400 snaps last season before a season-ending injury in the eighth game of the year against Virginia Tech. In spite of the injury, he still earned the team’s Offensive Lineman of the Year Award.

Ann Curtis | The Observer
Graduate student quarterback Ian Book drops back and surveys the field in a September 21 game against Georgia last year.

Crawford is the most experienced player on the Notre Dame roster in terms of years on campus. His first season was in 2015, although he did not see action as the result of a torn ACL. In 2016 he was witness to what became a disastrous 4-8 season. He did run a blocked PAT attempt back for a game-tying two-point conversion to force overtime in the season opener at Texas, but after two games once more saw his season end prematurely, this time as the result of an Achilles injury.

Crawford played in all but one game in 2017, but saw a promising 2018 campaign end before it began as he tore his ACL again in August. He made his return in 2019 and played in 11 games, missing only two despite dislocating his elbow against Virginia, and has come back for a sixth season with the Irish on a medical waiver. After serving most of his career as part of Notre Dame’s nickel package, he will make the move to strong safety this season.

Hayes returns as a graduate student following a season-ending injury just four games into the season that allowed him to take advantage of the NCAA’s newly implemented four-game redshirt rule. For his career he has recorded 78 tackles, 42 unassisted, 14.5 tackles for loss, one forced fumble, four fumble recoveries and six sacks.

Hayes took a very prominent leadership role with the Irish this summer when the team returned to campus after the spring semester moved online. Following the death of George Floyd and the ensuing protests over racial injustice and police brutality, Hayes and head coach Brian Kelly led the team in a march through South Bend, and Hayes later spoke along with the team in honor of Juneteenth.

Ogundeji experienced a breakout season as a senior. He forced fumbles against Louisville, Boston College and Stanford. He recorded a touchdown on a fumble recovery against Virginia and finished the season with 34 tackles, 7.0 for loss and 4.5 sacks.

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