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Irish starting guard Elmer to forgo year of eligibility

Notre Dame starting right guard Steve Elmer announced Tuesday he will forgo his final year of athletic eligibility.

Elmer is scheduled to graduate in May and is pursuing opportunities in Washington, D.C.

He started the past 27 games for the Irish.

"Notre Dame is a special place that develops unique and talented people," Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said in a statement. "Steve Elmer is such a person. He chose Notre Dame to earn a degree from the top University in the world and play football at the highest level. He's accomplished both and so much more.

"This is an incredible professional opportunity for Steve. We as a coaching staff talk about how attending Notre Dame isn't a four-year decision; rather it's a 40-year investment into your life. This University provides so many different avenues toward success, whether that's on the football field or in the boardroom, and Steve's another outstanding example."

Elmer was a congressional intern in Washington, D.C., last summer.

"While playing football for Notre Dame has been nothing short of an honor, I have been presented with an incredible opportunity to pursue a career doing something in which I have great interest, and at a great company to boot," Elmer wrote in a statement. "The experience of balancing Notre Dame's academic rigors with my football commitments has given me a great foundation for my next endeavor."