Day ready to go for Irish, Zaire getting there

Day ready to go for Irish, Zaire getting there
September 26, 2013, 10:15 pm
Share This Post

Defensive end Sheldon Day will return to Notre Dame's lineup for Saturday's showdown with No. 14 Oklahoma, coach Brian Kelly confirmed on Thursday.

Day, who suffered a sprained ankle Sept. 14 at Purdue, was limited in practice last week and didn't play in Notre Dame's 17-13 win over Michigan State. As expected, though, Day participated in every practice this week and is ready to go for Saturday.

"Anytime you're coming back from an injury in the time frame that he has, you gotta feel good that he's been able to respond," Kelly told members of the media Thursday in South Bend.

Day has seven tackles, one for a loss in three games with no sacks this year.

[More: Irish ready for Blake Bell's ground, air attack]

In other roster notes, freshman quarterback Malik Zaire is continuing to be prepped as Notre Dame's No. 3 quarterback, Kelly said Thursday. Last week, Kelly floated the idea of dropping Zaire down to the scout team, likely putting him in a position to not play for the Irish this year.

That plan, though, appears to have been scrapped. While Zaire was cleared to return to practice Sept. 15 after dealing with mono, the Irish don't have any other scholarship options behind starter Tommy Rees and backup Andrew Hendrix.

"I think he's still on that learning curve as a freshman quarterback -- seeing, learning," Kelly said. "We kept traveling him even though he wasn't playing. I think he's still in that learning curve.

"If two guys got injured, he'd be starting for us."