Everett Golson looked confident and comfortable as Notre Dame opened up preseason camp at Culver Academies Monday morning.
Golson is looking to reclaim the starting job after missing the 2013 season due to an academic suspension. He took all the first team reps while Malik Zaire took the 2nd team reps.
"Missing a full year and coming back and its kind of like.. Ok I'm home," Golson said about starting out camp. "it was more so being anxious. I'm ready to go. My summer been pretty good. I've prepared pretty decent. I'm just trying to get back in and hopefully win this thing."
Golson says he believes competition from Zaire will better prepare him for the upcoming season. He says the competition will help both get better. Kelly says he will name a starter whenever either shows consistency, great leadership and the ability to lead the Irish to a championship. Kelly liked what he saw from #5 on Monday.
"I use the term---you are either fearful or fearless," Kelly said. "There was a time when he was a bit fearful at the quarterback position. We want to keep moving him towards not being afraid and being fearless in that position and if he gets to that level, its going to be fun and exciting to watch him play."
It's the 2nd year in a row Notre Dame has opened up camp away from campus. Last year the team was at Camp Shiloh in Marion, Indiana. This year, they are closer to home in Culver. The team will spend five days at Culver Academies.
It didn't matter who you were, there was a general buzz in the air as the Irish took the field to begin the 2014 quest.
"This is why I'm in the profession," Kelly said. "You put in the time and the grind to get to these days. This is the most exciting time of the year for me. This is what gets the blood pumping in your body. To get our here and teach and be with your football players and your football team."
"It's great to have the helmet back on my head," defensive lineman Sheldon Day said with a smile. "Opportunity to strap up your chin strap again. It's great."
"It feels awesome man," safety Austin Collinsworth added. "It's my last time. Last go around in camp so I'm just enjoying it."
Notre Dame offensive lineman Ronnie Stanley left practice midway through but Kelly says Stanley need an IV and just need to get some fluids in him. Stanley is expected back on Tuesday.
The Irish are without offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach Mike Denbrock for the first few weeks of camp. Denbrock had an undisclosed surgical procedure done last week.