Golson // South Bend Tribune photo

Golson // South Bend Tribune photo (May 25, 2013)

NOTRE DAME - Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly expressed optimism that former starting quarterback Everett Golson will  return to Notre Dame, after serving a semester suspension for what Golson called a "poor academic judgement".

"You know these things happen and you want your players to be accountable, a there's a big sense of pride in knowing Everett took full responsibility and accountibility", Kelly said Tuesday, speaking for the first time since Golson was dismissed from school.

"He's going to do everything in his power to get himself back here.  I think it's truly going to be his defining moment."

If Golson is able to regain admission into the university, Kelly says that nough for him to let Golson back onto the football team.

“He doesn't have to show me anything but making sure he took responsibility for his actions, which he did,” Kelly said. “If the university allows him back into school, that would be enough for him to be on the team. And then we're back to work. You’ve got to go prove yourself. He's going to have to prove himself every day.”

"I have a great deal of confidence that we're going to see (him) back here at Notre Dame."

In the meantime, Brian Kelly says that the three quarterbacks currently on the roster, Tommy Rees, Andrew Hendrix and true freshman Malik Zaire will go into the fall with a chance to earn the starting job.

Popular opinion suggests that senior Tommy Rees will have the upper hand in that competition.

"Tommy knows exactly what the expectations are for him", Kelly says of Rees, who has fourteen career wins in 18 starts.  "He was a huge part of our undefeated season, and he'll be a big part of this season (2013) as well."