In a stark contrast from last year when it seemed like Notre Dame sent every scholarship senior that wanted to go to the NFL Combine, the Irish will only have four representatives at this year's NFL meat market in Indianapolis.
The initial combine list came out Friday (names can be added later, so it is possible Notre Dame could slip another in) and safety Tom Zbikowski, tight end John Carlson, center John Sullivan and defensive lineman Trevor Laws all have invites for Indy.
Among those left off, only punter Geoff Price surprises us. Five punters were invited to the Combine. None of them were the strong-legged Texan. Notre Dame saw one of the invited punters, Georgia Tech's Durant Brooks.
Of Notre Dame's opponents, 12 USC players were invited to the Combine and seven Michigan players were invited, although we didn't recognize one of the Wolverines -- some guy named Leon Hart. Hmmm, hopefully the NFL will fix that. Either that or former Michigan defensive back Leon Hall and running back Michael Hart have combined bodies. Talk about a first round pick.
The Combine runs from Feb. 20-26. Notre Dame's first NFL Pro Day, a source told us, will happen in March.
-By Michael Rothstein of The Journal Gazette