Here come the lions — but also the Irish
We are just days away from the beginning of March, and for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, they are already well on their way with their spring recruiting goals. It’s funny how much things have changed. In the not-so-distant past, the end of February usually meant we would still breaking down the the recruiting class that was finalized on National Signing Day.
In today’s world, however, the cycles are more blurred, and we are completely fixated on the 2022 cycle at the moment.
The Irish are currently sitting at 7 commitments for the 2022 class with a #8 ranking by the 247 Team Composite Rankings.
The Irish gained two new commitments in the last month with Virginia DE Aiden Gobaira and Texas RB Jadarian Price. Both Rivals and 247 have started to update their rankings and here’s a fun fact… Nolan Ziegler is a 4-Star on all 3 services — but is still a 3-Star according to the 247 Composite.
WHO’S ON THE TEAM?
It’s still extremely early to put much stock in a scholarship chart for 2022, but it at least provides a basic blueprint for positional need as it clearly shows weaknesses and strengths as you look at the 2-Cycle hauls. Note: Any new position assignments will be updated with the beginning of spring practice.
The most elementary of glances at this chart offers some glaring holes that need to be filled on the roster. Please keep in mind, however, the “extra” year of eligibility because of COVID-19. A handful of players that would be eligible for this extra year are not listed in the scholarship chart (yet). Guys like Shayne Simon, Paul Moala, Bo Bauer, Jayson Ademilola, Justin Ademilola, and others could technically return in 2022.
Until we get some type of clarification on how the “85” rule is affected for 2022, they remain in limbo here.
- Wide Receiver
- Defensive Tackle
Those three stand out right now, but the importance of other positions could shift over the course of the year. Linebacker, for example, still feels like a need according to the numbers and depending upon what Marcus Freeman does this spring — it may jump up higher on the needs scale.
I continue to be amazed at the sheer amount of offers that Notre Dame has put out for the 2022 cycle. As of publishing, the Irish have 151 offers on the table. They have added 27 offers over the past month, and are being very aggressive with this philosophy.
The importance of getting offers out early can not be overstated. In many cases, recruits that aren’t all that familiar with Notre Dame are much more likely to consider the Irish if that interest comes before the end of their junior season — and at least before the end of their junior year.
While there are always a handful of offers that commit elswhere over the course of a month, there are two that stun the most over the past 30 days. 4-Star TE Elijah Brown from Dayton (same HS that Marcus freeman is from) committed to the Alabama Crimson Tide, and 4-Star CB Bobby Taylor from Katy Texas (yes THAT Bobby Taylor kid that Notre Dame didn’t offer right away after a football camp in 2020) committed to the Texas A&M Aggies.
I’m not sure how much longer I will track this certain thing. The Irish don’t really have much momentum towards any 5-Stars right now, but since it’s all some fans can talk about — I’ll humor it a bit. We will simply break these 5-Star OFFERS down as COMMITTED and UNCOMMITTED and leave it at that.
- WR Caleb Burton TX — Ohio State Buckeyes
- OL Will Campbell — LSU Tigers
- CB Domani Jackson — USC Trojans
- QB Ty Simpson TN
- RB Gavin Sawchuck CO
- RB Emmanuel Henderson AL
- WR Kevin Coleman MO
- WR Tetairoa McMillan CA
- OL Zach Rice VA
- DE Enai White PA
- DE Shemar Stewart FL
- LB Shawn Murphy VA
- LB Harold Perkins TX
- CB Will Johnson MI
- CB Denver Harris TX
- S Kamari Wilson FL
- ATH Malaki Starks GA
OL Gunner Givens and CB Jeadyn Lucas are no longer ranked as 5-Stars.
Last month I stated that maybe the next commitment would be Donovan Hinish, and now we are uncertain if Hinish is even a take for the Irish. Instead, Notre Dame added Jadarian Price and Aiden Gobaira.
It’s extremely hard to sit here and say this Joe or this Mike might be ready to pop. The extension of the dead period by the NCAA due to the COVID-19 pandemic will likely cause some recruits to be more patient this cycle. Then again… commitments aren’t binding and recruits may still decide to commit while still keeping an open mind until they can start visiting again.