The Notre Dame Fighting Irish will likely have starting quarterback Tommy Rees when they take on the Air Force Falcons Saturday, according to Matt Fortuna of ESPN.com.
Head coach Brian Kelly told reporters Rees was cleared to practice Tuesday.
Rees left the Fighting Irish’s 14-10 victory over the rival Southern Cal Trojans when he was injured in the third quarter. Rees suffered what the Irish called a neck strain when he was sacked by Trojans junior linebacker Lamar Dawson. Before the injury, Rees was 14-of-21 for 166 yards with two touchdowns and zero interceptions.
Rees’ backup, senior Andrew Hendrix, took over when Rees went down. He didn’t complete a pass on four attempts. Hendrix, who is a superior runner, couldn’t do anything on the ground either, rushing for just five yards on six attempts.
Despite Hendrix’s familiarity with the offense, the Irish are obviously going to need Rees if they are going to compete with the tougher teams on the schedule, like the sixth-ranked Stanford Cardinal, who they’ll meet in the season finale on November 30.
On the season, Rees is 119-of-224 for 1,660 yards with 15 touchdowns and six interceptions.
The Irish and Falcons will kick off at 5:00 pm EST Saturday.