Notre Dame's first four days of training camp in Marion, Indiana at Shiloh Park is about much more than just football.
It's about bonding off the field too.
After their 2nd practice of camp on Tuesday, the Irish went rock climbing.
That activity is nothing however to the one wide receiver T.J. Jones took part in this summer. As part of a job shadow with a Notre Dame alum, Jones swam with sharks at the Florida Aquarium.
"I've a weird fascination with marine mammals since I was a kid," Jones explains. "My dream job is to work at sea world with Shamu so diving in shark tanks was another way to work with marine mammals and get close to them."
Irish football coach Brian Kelly had no issues whatsoever with his top receiver getting in a tank with sharks.
"You figure if he is going to jump into a tank of sharks, he's going to go over the middle without any fear," Kelly says. "I was pretty excited it was T.J. Jones in there."
And Jones says Kelly is right--he had no fear in there or over the middle.
"I know what is coming across the middle," Jones explains. "You don't know what is going to happen in a shark tank. You don't know what they are thinking so knowing that I am going to get hit across the middle it is a little bit easier to cope with now."
Jones says the job shadow has convinced him that he wants to work in marine life whenever his football career comes to an end.
If Brian Kelly is right, that may be a long time however.
"I think he's one of the best route runners in the country," Kelly declared last week. "Wouldn't surprise me if he's a first round draft pick, he's that good. Sometimes he doesn't get enough of the accolades. I think he's a great receiver."
Jones is eager to prove he can very well be that receiver during his upcoming senior season.
"Not only do I have that faith in myself but knowing that the coaches have that faith in me it gives me that much more want to and determination to achieve those goals," Jones says. "Because now I know we can both work together and establish a relationship to do so."
Jones and the Irish open the regular season August 31st against Temple.