After playing in 12 games as a freshman this past season, Notre Dame defensive end Aaron Lynch has decided to transfer from the Fighting Irish, the school announced today.
The release stated Lynch wished to be closer to his home state of Florida.
“Aaron recently approached me about his desire to leave Notre Dame and return to Florida,” coach Brian Kelly said in a statement. “I’ve always known and appreciated the affinity Aaron has for his home in Florida. However, the stark reality is you can’t make it at Notre Dame if your head and heart are not here. I am proud of the effort Aaron made in the classroom and on the field at Notre Dame. I wish him all the best in the future.”
Lynch was one of the prize recruits of Notre Dame’s 2011 class, being listed as the third-best defensive end and 28th-best prospect overall, according to Rivals.com.
“I want to thank Coach Kelly for giving me this great opportunity to attend Notre Dame and be part of the Fighting Irish football family,” Lynch said. “This was one of the toughest decisions I have had to make, but I want to go back home to Florida. I’m grateful to Coach Kelly for understanding and allowing me to return home.”
Where Lynch ends up will now be its own storyline, but the four-star athlete could end up at South Florida, a hub for transfers in recent years, according Josh Newberg of 247Sports. Bruce Feldman of CBS Sports later tweeted that Notre Dame would not release Lynch to Florida, Florida State or Miami.
Lynch started six games for Notre Dame as a true freshman last year. He recorded 33 tackles, seven tackles for loss and five and a half sacks.