Notre Dame's Nick Martin was named on Monday to the watch list for the Rimington Trophy, given annually to the nation's top collegiate center.
Martin started 11 games before tearing his MCL in the second-to-last week of the regular season against BYU. Toward the end of spring practice, Martin began participating in some team activities -- non-contact ones -- as Notre Dame worked to re-integrate him into the offense.
While Matt Hegarty filled in well for Martin against BYU, Stanford and Rutgers and was solid for the Irish in the spring, Martin won't lose his job at center this coming fall. Coach Brian Kelly has been adamant Martin is Notre Dame's No. 1 center, and said last week Hegarty will work at guard over the summer and in fall camp.
Martin is the younger brother of Zack Martin, who started 52 games for Notre Dame and was picked 16th overall by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2014 NFL Draft.
The Rimington Trophy has been awarded since 2000, and no Notre Dame player has ever won it. Braxston Cave was one of six finalists for the trophy in 2012, which was won by Alabama's Barrett Jones. Sixty-four centers were named to the 2014 Rimington Trophy watch list.