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Notre Dame spring game preview

A refined Golson returns for the Fighting Irish. Dave Miller

Print This April 12, 2014, 12:30 PM EST

Notre Dame holds its annual spring game on Saturday at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

Here are a few things to watch as the Fighting Irish wrap up spring drills at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

— Quarterback Everett Golson is back on the field for the first time since last year's Blue-Gold Game. Of course, the dual-threat was not a part of the ND squad last year but is trying to reclaim the starting job. While head coach Brian Kelly has not named a starting quarterback, this is Golson's job to lose. Kelly and his offensive staff will push the envelope with Golson in 2014 because they believe in his skill set and his development since 2012. However, Malik Zaire is a very confident player who believes that he will ultimately beat out Golson and start in the season opener against Rice. This will be his second spring game, as the dual-threat shined in last year's contest.

— There were high expectations for running back Greg Bryant upon his arrival, but he missed the rest of the 2013 campaign with a knee injury after getting just three carries for 14 yards in three games. Kelly has noted that Bryant has had a really good spring. The Irish were also impressed with Tarean Folston's play last year. ND is expected to use its running backs a lot in the passing game this season.

— The offensive line is still a work in progress with Nick Martin and Christian Lombard out because of injuries. Some players will line up Saturday in spots that they may not play in the fall.

— The Irish are talented and deep at wide receiver, where sophomores Will Fuller, Corey Robinson and Torii Hunter Jr. are joined by junior Chris Brown and slot guys Amir Carlisle and C.J. Prosise. Who will emerge as the top weapons for Golson and Zaire?

— In addition to Kelly taking over offensive play-calling duties with Chuck Martin now the head coach at Miami (OH), the Irish have a new defensive coordinator with Bob Diaco getting the head gig at UConn. Brian VanGorder is now running the defense, which will feature exotic and multiple looks.

Dave Miller, the college football editor and writer for the National Football Post, is on Twitter @Miller_Dave.

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