Ex-Florida Gator Cody Riggs Will Transfer to Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Brian LeighFeatured ColumnistFebruary 19, 2014

Florida's Cody Riggs walks off the field after being charged with targeting and ejected early in the first quarter of an NCAA college football game against Missouri Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013, in Columbia, Mo. Missouri won 36-17. (AP Photo/L.G. Patterson)
L.G. Patterson/Associated Press

Former Florida defensive back Cody Riggs, who started and played well in perhaps the nation's most talented secondary last season, has made official his decision to transfer to Notre Dame, where he'll be eligible to play immediately as a graduate student.

According to a press release from Notre Dame University:

University of Notre Dame head football coach Brian Kelly announced today that Cody Riggs will attend graduate school at the University and play for Fighting Irish this fall. Riggs will graduate with a degree in Family, Youth and Community Sciences from the University of Florida in May and join the Notre Dame program in June.

Per the release, Riggs appeared in 40 games and made 26 starts during his career at Florida, registering 107 tackles and nine tackles for loss.

He played cornerback, his preferred position, in 2012 but was moved to safety in 2013 to make room for Loucheiz Purifoy, Marcus Roberson and freshman Vernon Hargreaves III.

"Cody Riggs is an outstanding player," said head coach Brian Kelly, according to the release. "He played a ton of football at Florida having started at both safety and corner back. Cody definitely brings veteran leadership and versatility to our team and defense."

In South Bend, Riggs should get a shot to play cornerback—a shot he likely wouldn't have gotten at Florida. The starting job opposite KeiVarae Russell was vacated by Bennett Jackson this offseason, and Riggs has a significant experience edge on sophomore Cole Luke.

When last he started at cornerback in 2012, Riggs helped Florida post the second-lowest quarterback rating defense in America.

Nov 30, 2013; Gainesville, FL, USA; Florida State Seminoles wide receiver Rashad Greene (80) is unable to make a catch as Florida Gators defensive back Cody Riggs (31) defends the play during the second quarter at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Mandatory Credi
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Wherever he plays, the undersized Riggs (5'9'') should become a valuable piece of the Notre Dame secondary, defense and team as a whole. With defensive linemen such as Louis Nix III and Stephon Tuitt gone to the NFL draft, the pass rush will naturally take at least a small step back from last season.

The coverage on the back end will need to compensate.

"I am very thankful for this opportunity," said Riggs, according to the release. "I fully intend to make the most of this opportunity by not only giving my absolute best effort, but also leading by example both on and off the field."

Riggs will be eligible to start practice this fall.


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