All summer, Notre Dame was touting its defensive front seven as one of its strengths going into the season. On Saturday against Navy, those statements appeared to be validated.
A huge (literally) breakout candidate for 2012 is 6-foot-6, 303-pound defensive end Stephon Tuitt. He is a true sophomore that can play defensive end or tackle, and is equally disruptive at either spot. He made sure to make his presence known right away.
Late in the second quarter, Navy was driving down the field when sophomore linebacker Ishaq Williams popped the ball loose, only to be scooped up by Tuitt and returned 77 yards for a score. The crazy thing about it? That 300 pound man was outstripping all of Navy’s defenders.
In the highlight below, you can see that it takes 9 seconds for Tuitt to pick up the ball and take it 77 yards. Break that down to a 40 time and that’s about a 4.52.