Tommy Rees says he's staying at Notre Dame.
The starter to close out 2010 and 2011, Rees became the backup quarterback to rookie Everett Golson in 2012. And even if he remains a backup next year, Rees has no intentions of leaving.
"I came to Notre Dame--committed here for four years to graduate," Rees told me moments after the Irish lost to Alabama in the national title game. "Whatever my role is on this team next year, I'm happy with it. Obviously, as a competitor you want to be the guy on the field. But quarterback is such a competitive position."
"I'm going to keep getting better, keep competing but I'm a Notre Dame guy."
Rees did not play in the season opener against Navy due to a suspension from a May arrest. He came in for the final two minutes of the Purdue game in week two to help the Irish engineer a game winning field goal. In week four, Rees replaced a struggling Golson midway through the 2nd quarter and led the Irish to victory--scoring the game's only touchdown.
Rees started the following week against Miami after Golson was late to a team meeting but Golson replaced Rees after just three plays and Everett remained in the game the rest of the way.
Rees was again called upon in the thriller against Stanford when Golson was knocked out of the game due to a concussion. Rees threw the go ahead touchdown in the OT win. Rees then started a week later against BYU with Golson still out because of the concussion. Tommy led ND to victory in the game.
When Golson struggled against Pittsburgh, Rees again came in the game to replace him--but Rees struggled as well. Golson returned and never lost the job again the rest of the season.
Rees easily could have caused issues within the locker room at times during the season--but never did. In fact--after Notre Dame's loss to Alabama in the national title game--no one was a bigger supporter of Golson than Rees.
"I thought Everett played a great game," Rees said. "Given the circumstances of getting down early--he fought for four quarters. He showed character and grit out there, taking hits and finding a way to move the ball. That's definitely a positive moving forward for him and for this team. I'm excited for the future."