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Fifth Notre Dame player, safety Eilar Hardy, to be held out amid academic investigation

Sam Cooper
Dr. Saturday

Two weeks after Notre Dame announced that four players would be held out of practice and competition amid an internal investigation into suspected academic fraud, the school released a statement Thursday that said a fifth player would also be held out.

The school did not name the player in the statement, but a spokesman subsequently confirmed that senior safety Eilar Hardy will not participate with the team as the investigation continues.

“As Notre Dame’s internal investigation relating to potential NCAA violations reaches its conclusion, a decision has been made to hold a fifth football player out from practice and competition,” the statement read. “As with all cases of suspected academic dishonesty, the matter will now be subject to the University’s honor code process.”

Hardy started two games at safety, but mainly played as a reserve in 10 total games for the Fighting Irish in 2013. He recorded 26 tackles and one tackle for loss. According to Irish Illustrated, Hardy was not listed on the team’s two-deep depth chart at safety.

The school confirmed on August 15 that KeiVarae Russell, DaVaris Daniels, Kendall Moore and Ishaq Williams would be held out of practice while the investigation took place. Head coach Brian Kelly had previously ruled those four players out for Saturday’s season opener against Rice.

When Notre Dame originally announced the investigation, it said that there is “evidence that students had submitted papers and homework that had been written for them by others.” The school notified the NCAA of the situation on the same day.

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Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

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