This week we are taking a look at each of Notre Dame's fourth-year scholarship players with eligibility remaining and examining whether he will likely return to the Irish next season. Here, we look at defensive end Kapron Lewis-Moore.
Before Notre Dame: From Weatherford (Texas) High School, Lewis-Moore entered Notre Dame as ESPNU's No. 19 defensive end.
At Notre Dame: The 6-foot-4, 300-pound Lewis-Moore appeared in 32 games and started 29 before detaching the medial collateral ligament in his right knee Oct. 22 against USC, costing him the rest of this season. For his career, Lewis-Moore has 140 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss, six sacks, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.
What's next?: Lewis-Moore underwent surgery Oct. 27, and Brian Kelly has said he expects the recovery time to be about 4-6 months. His status for the spring is unclear, though the Irish likely won't rush his return, given that they already know what he can do at full-strength.
The verdict: Staying. Aaron Lynch and Stephon Tuitt have had strong freshman seasons, but they certainly could benefit from a veteran presence like Lewis-Moore. The depth of the line was severely tested this season given injuries and illnesses to Lewis-Moore, Tuitt, end Ethan Johnson and nose guard Sean Cwynar. All but Johnson could be back next season, and the defensive line could be the strength of the defense.