(Photo by: Chris Williams/Icon Sportswire)
Drue Tranquill was a four-star recruit in 2014 out of Carroll High School (Fort Wayne, IN). He starred on both sides of the ball in high school. During his senior year there he made 75 tackles including 16 for loss to go with four sacks and on offense he totaled nearly 1800 yards rushing and receiving and scored an amazing 33 touchdowns.
Initially he committed to play at Purdue, but when Brian Kelly and the Irish offered he flipped and the rest is history. A June arrival on campus in 2014, an made an immediate impression when he arrived in tremendous shape. He played in the first 11 games of the season at safety and had three starts. His season unfortunately ended in game 11 with a torn ACL which he suffered while returning an interception.
Tranquill took a dogged approach to rehab and recovery from the injury, and in time for the 2015 season he was back and better than ever. Then in week 3 of his sophomore year, the Irish had a big match up against #14 ranked Georgia Tech, and it happened again. While celebrating a big stop just before halftime, Drue tore the ACL in his other knee. Talk about bad luck!
Tranquill again set the standard for recovery and rehab and was full go just a few months later for spring practice. The typical 9-month rehab process took him 4 months.
Teamwise, his Junior year in 2016 was a long one, the Irish fired their defensive coordinator after week 3 and struggled to 4-8. But Drue played well on his two surgically repaired knees and had 79 tackles, 2nd best on the team.
For Tranquill’s senior season in 2017, he was even better. Elected as a captain, new defensive coordinator Mike Elko moved him to the rover position and he flourished. The Irish rolled to 10 wins and Tranquil notched 85 tackles, including 10 for loss.
Considered ready for the NFL, Tranquill decided to come back for a graduate season in 2018. Now a two-time captain he became the heart and soul of a team that battled to a 12-0 regular season. Tranquill was a warrior, playing with a broken hand half the season and assorted other injuries. He notched 75 tackles 3.5 sacks and another 9 tackles for loss.
After the season Tranquill was awarded the prestigious Wuerffel Trophy, an award given annually to the college football player who best combines, community service with athletic and academic achievement.
Tranquill was drafted in the fourth round of the 2019 draft by the LA Chargers, and led them in tackles in 2022. He currently is a situational starter with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Drue Tranquill, Notre Dame 2014-2018, another All-Time Irish Hero.