SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Notre Dame's defensive line has taken another hit heading into 2013, as the Irish have lost Tony Springmann for the season because of a left knee dislocation with severe ligament damage, coach Brian Kelly said during Thursday's media day.
Springmann, who will undergo surgery, was not dressed and had his left knee wrapped during the previous two media viewings of practice, with Kelly initially ruling the redshirt sophomore out for the Aug. 31 season-opener against Temple.
The 6-foot-5, 296-pound Springmann played in every game last season, notching 11 total tackles, two tackles for loss, one sack and three quarterback hurries.
Notre Dame's depth up front took a blow earlier this summer when five-star defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes opted out of his National Letter of Intent and went to UCLA, where he was later granted immediate eligibility.
Kelly said that he is not concerned about another Irish end, Stephon Tuitt, after the junior went down Thursday in practice after twisting his knee. Tuitt walked off the field on his own power.
As for special teams, George Atkinson III will return kickoffs again and T.J. Jones will return punts. Kelly also said that Nick Tausch, Kyle Brindza and Alex Wulfeck will all play against Temple, with Brindza getting the first shot at punter while remaining in charge of kickoffs.
Notes: Kelly said that Everett Golson (academic suspension) is working out in Chicago and plans on heading to San Diego for two months to work with quarterback guru George Whitfield. Golson does not need to enroll in any classes. ... Zack Martin, TJ Jones and Bennett Jackson are Notre Dame's 2013 captains. Martin was a captain last year as well, making him the 18th two-time captain in school history. … Jaylon Smith (dog) and Austin Collinsworth (safety) both worked with the first-team defense during the media's viewing of practice. … Tackle Ronnie Stanley (concussion), guard Mark Harrell and running back William Mahone were not in pads. Steve Elmer received first-team reps at right tackle with Stanley out, with Christian Lombard again at right guard. Kelly said he hasn't nailed down a staring five on the offensive line but said that Stanley and Elmer will both play this year. Stanley should be back Monday if all goes well. … Guards Chris Watt and Conor Hanratty and running backs Cam McDaniel and Tarean Folston were all back from practice as well.