Judging a book by its cover is a collective mistake made by many avid readers. The same can be said for appraising a Notre Dame standout player by one horrific loss, even though that defeat was for a national championship.
As a seventh-round draft pick for the Atlanta Falcons, Zeke Motta knows what it will take to get the job done…and he’s willing to put in the work to get there. After being involved in basketball, baseball, track and soccer, Motta decided in the eighth grade that he wanted to focus his energy on developing his football talent. With the help of his father Bill, who was the defensive coordinator at Vero Beach High School, the fruits of that determined focus were many. In 2007 and 2008, Motta was named District 17 Player of the Year. As a senior he earned a spot as first-team Class 6A all-state with a total of 137 tackles.
Motta turned down offers from Auburn and Boston College to join the ranks of the Fighting Irish, and it’s been full speed ahead ever since. In 2009, he was one of only three freshmen to play in every game and totaled 12 tackles. He played all 13 games with eight starts in 2010, and that season marked 50 tackles. The numbers dipped slightly in 2011 with 40 tackles, but he did recover a fumble against Florida State and scored a touchdown on the 29-yard return. 2012 was his best year by far with a total of 77 tackles; of those tackles, 16 were against the Alabama Crimson Tide in the BCS National Championship Game.
Zeke Motta is one of the good guys, on and off the field. This young man will make his mark with the Falcons, and Falcons fans will share in the pride that Bill Motta has known for years to come.