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The Journal Gazette

Tuesday, October 31, 2017 1:20 pm

Wake's Jessie Bates III ruled out for game at Notre Dame

CHRIS GOFF | The Journal Gazette

Wake Forest defensive back Jessie Bates III, a Fort Wayne native, will not play in Saturday's game at Notre Dame because of an injury, Demon Deacons coach Dave Clawson announced Tuesday.

Bates, a Snider graduate, is expected back at some time this year, Clawson said. 

Bates started Wake Forest's first eight games and ranks first on the team with 64 tackles, including 5.5 for a loss. He has one interception, four pass breakups and one forced fumble.

A sophomore, Bates has 164 career tackles, including nine for loss, and six interceptions.

But that won't be the only injury absence for Wake. Freshman wide receiver Greg Dortch, who had 10 catches for 167 yards and four touchdowns over the weekend in a win against Louisville, underwent season-ending surgery for an abdominal injury.

Dortch totaled 53 catches for 722 yards and nine touchdowns, all of which are team highs.

Notre Dame, meanwhile, continues to be remarkably healthy. Tight end Alize Mack, in the school's concussion protocol, might miss Saturday's game, but starting tight end Durham Smythe "is playing the best football of his career," coach Brian Kelly said Tuesday.

Here are a few more tidbits from Kelly's weekly news conference:

  • Starting quarterback Brandon Wimbush and starting defensive tackle Jonathan Bonner got dinged up in a 35-14 win over North Carolina State but will play against Wake Forest. Same goes for third-string running back Tony Jones Jr. (hip pointer).
  • The 13-person selection committee for the College Football Playoff will release its first Top 25 tonight. Asked for his rankings, Kelly said, "I'd have Georgia No. 1, Notre Dame No. 2 and then no other teams."
  • Kelly said he doesn't feel the need to run up the score to impress the committee. "I do what I think is right in those situations," he said.
  • Kelly explained how Notre Dame labeled Josh Adams' Heisman Trophy campaign "33 Trucking." Eleven players on offense, 11 on defense and 11 on special teams adds up to the digit. "He doesn't get where he is without all 33 coming together," Kelly said.
  • Mike Elko was the defensive coordinator at Wake Forest prior to accepting the same position at Notre Dame. Of Elko facing his former employer, Kelly said, "I’m sure he’d like to get through this quickly."