C.J. Holmes eager to kick off senior year

C.J. Holmes committed to Notre Dame in July and next week he kicks off his senior season at Cheshire Academy in Connecticut. Holmes and his teammates will conduct training camp off-campus for the first time. He’s excited to be part of that team-bonding experience.

Notre Dame commitment C.J. Holmes is more excited than normal about the start of training camp.

Holmes, a 6-foot-1, 195-pound athlete from Cheshire Academy in Connecticut, and his coach sat down in the spring to discuss ideas that would help the team come together for the common goal of winning a championship.

That’s when Holmes remembered how inspired he was after watching the hit movie, “Remember the Titans,” and he suggested a remote location for camp. On Aug. 23, the Cheshire Academy football team will travel to Cape Cod to conduct its first off-campus training camp.

“I really kind of stole it from ‘Remember the Titans,’” Holmes said. “That's what I was thinking about when I brought it up. My thinking behind it was to get everybody away from school and girls and media and everything like that and just bring us together.”

Holmes and his teammates will be put through three-a-day practices and conclude the week with a full scrimmage.

“I just want to accomplish getting my team in the right mindset,” Holmes said. “We've got to get better every day. We didn't have as good of a season as we wanted to last year. Every year we want to win a championship and last year I think we were kind of humbled. I think we have to get back to the dominance that we created.”

The four-star prospect is looking forward to his final high school training camp and season.

“Physically I feel great,” he said. “I think I'm right where I need to be. Mentally I'm good. I'm just excited to play my senior season and get after it with my boys one more time. Hopefully we get to do everything that we plan to do.”

As usual, Holmes will play nearly every snap of every game for the Cats.

“At my school I start at running back and I play wide receiver in a few of our personnel groups,” he said. “For me this year, they're just going to use me where they need me. I'm just going to land in a lot of places on the field. I did the same last year. On defense, I'm probably looking at a lot of strong safety and nickel. I'm always on special teams. I play every down on special teams throughout the season.”

Notre Dame recruited Holmes on offense, although he’s looking more forward to his last season on defense.

“Defense is always fun,” he said. “I think defense normally has the most juice on the field. Offensive guys won't like me to say that but defense is where you have the most fun.”

Holmes scheduled his official visit to Notre Dame for home opener game against Nevada.

He has been actively recruiting his teammate, four-star wide receiver Tarik Black, and a few other prospects to follow him to South Bend.

“I've been recruiting Tarik a lot but knowing that he's my best friend I really want him to make a decision for himself and find a place that's good for him. If Notre Dame's not it, I'll be a little bit upset but I'll be happy that he found a home,” Holmes said. “I really want to get Jedrick Wills. I know he's looking at Alabama but we need his huge frame on our line. That would be a huge guy to run behind.”


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