Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said Tuesday during his weekly news conference that the school's rulings on five suspended players was "imminent."
Four players -- cornerback KeiVarae Russell, wide receiver DaVaris Daniels, defensive end Ishaq Williams and linebacker Kendall Moore -- were suspended Aug. 15; safety Eilar Hardy was suspended Aug. 28. In a release announcing the four suspensions Aug. 15, the school said it found evidence late in the summer that students had turned in papers and homework that had been written for them by others and referred that evidence on July 29 to the compliance office on athletics.
Daniels, Russell and Williams were projected starters. Russell was considered the team's most talented defensive back, Daniels was the leading returning receiver and Williams has some pass-rush ability.
A statement from the school Sunday said the hearings for the players were completed last week and that the decisions would be communicated to the players. The school also said that it would not disclose the results; still, the players almost certainly will, so with Kelly saying "imminent" on Tuesday, it seems likely news on the quintet will come Tuesday afternoon or Wednesday.
Kelly was asked what role the players would play if they were ruled eligible.
"I was asked this question on our teleconference (Sunday) and it forced me to kind of give it some thought and I did. ... I think the overriding thought for me is six weeks is a long time; there's no way that somebody's going to come back in and start on Saturday," he said. "We'll see how it plays out. If in fact we do have a player back, we'll try to get them an opportunity to contribute, but it would have to be in a limited role."
Kelly has allowed the players -- who have been attending classes -- to work with the team's strength and conditioning staff, but they haven't been allowed to practice or attend team meetings.
Notre Dame is 5-0 and plays host to North Carolina on Saturday. The Irish play at Florida State on Oct. 18, and conceivably having the five players for the FSU game -- especially Russell and Daniels -- would be a big boost for the Irish.