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Irish Insights

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    When the Atlantic Coast Conference revealed future opponents Tuesday for Notre Dame, Florida State naturally stuck out as a marquee matchup following Saturday night's classic.

Former Dwenger teammates ready to square off

Former Bishop Dwenger teammates Tony Springmann and Remound Wright had to wait a year, but both are contributing to their college football teams as sophomores.

Springmann plays on Notre Dame's defensive line, and has five tackles and a sack in five games. Wright is a running back for Stanford, and has run for 25 yards on seven carries and caught one pass for 35 yards in four games.

They will get the chance to square off against each other Saturday in Notre Dame Stadium when the No. 7 Irish (5-0) try to end a three-game losing streak to the No. 17 Cardinal (4-1).

"It is pretty cool," Springmann said of having a former high school teammate on the opposing team. "We were watching film the other day, and I would see him out there and like it is pretty cool."

Wright has had the same experience in the film room of watching Springmann make plays as part of the Irish's defensive line rotation.

The Cardinal running back said Springmann, who now sports long red hair and a full beard, looks very different then when they were teammates, and he is happy to see his friend get the chance to play.

"He's gotten bigger. His hair has gotten a lot longer. He looks a lot meaner," Wright said. "I'm sure he's the same nice guy at heart, but he looks a lot more intimidating.

"I always thought he was going to play left tackle in college. In high school, he didn't play any nose tackle or anything, and not too much hand-in-the-dirt defensive line. I knew it was a matter of time before he got the hang of it and just started dominating. He's that type of guy. He works hard. He puts in the work every day."

Wright said he and Springmann still communicate on a regular basis, usually through text messages. And even though they have been ribbing each other about their chosen colleges since high school, the trash-talking has been toned down this week.

"This week, we are actually being pretty nice to each other," Wright said, then jokingly added. "You got to lull him to sleep and then hit him in the mouth."

When the trash-talking resumes, Wright said he has the edge on Springmann, even though he wouldn't share specifics about what the two say to each other.

"I'll just say Tony is pretty clever with the comebacks, but I feel mine are always better," Wright said. "Let's just leave it at that."

Even if Wright thinks his taunts are more clever, the 6-foot-6, 300-pound Springmann says he has an ace in the hole when he verbally spars with the 5-9, 205-pound Wright.

"I pull the short card," Springmann said. "That was always my go-to. It was all in good fun, though."