Is there a magic number?
The Notre Dame Fighting Irish received their 20th commitment for the 2021 football recruiting class with the pledge of Philip Riley, and it comes a month away from the start of the early signing period. So… what else might go down for Notre Dame before that time, as well as the one in February?
To be perfectly honest — I’m not sure. It could be a huge bang, and it could just, well… be.
Usually, this would be the opportune time to discuss the numbers game that always come along with signing days. With the waiver of this year’s eligibility which was granted by the NCAA because of the coronavirus pandemic, things have got trickier — although perhaps not harder.
Notre Dame was supposed to have a 20 man class (give or take a few) but with attrition and the extra year of eligibility, it seems like there isn’t a real cap on this class. Here’s what the Irish are dealing with right now for 2021:
But that’s not ALL they may have for 2021. With that eligibility waiver, there are 14 seniors and 5th year seniors from 2020 that could return — however it is highly unlikely that anything more than a handful put in that extra year.
So what does all of this mean for Notre Dame’s 2021 class?! I’m still not entirely sure yet, but here’s a quick look at what’s left on the table.
Donovan Edwards looked like a real longshot just a month ago. Edwards appeared to be leaning towards the in-state Michigan Wolverines with the Georgia Bulldogs there in second place. After a little Big 10 play and Michigan’s implosion, there’s a line there for Notre Dame and he’s listening. Cardwell was just offered about a week ago. Notre Dame is openly trying to get a second running back in this class, and I’m all for it.
- 4-Star Caleb Johnson (FL)
This Auburn commitment actually hails from Fort Wayne, but I’m not sure any of that matters. Johnson and his family are still listening to Jeff Quinn and Notre Dame. I’m not sure if the Irish can or will flip him when it’s all said and done, but it has all of the makings of one.
- 4-Star Kelvin Gilliam (VA)
Currently Gilliam is committed to the Oklahoma Sooners, but he is listening to Notre Dame (as well as a handful of others apparently). This isn’t a Texas kid at Oklahoma — it’s a Virginia kid.
- 3-Star Kahanu Kia (HI)
There are currently some crystal balls in for Kia to pick Notre Dame. The Hawaii native is from the same high school that produced Manti Te’o and Barack Obama.
- 4-Star Ceyair Wright (CA)
It’s kind of hard imagining Notre Dame taking 4 corners in one class. It’s not that they shouldn’t — it’s just that they rarely go this deep. This feels like more of a longshot at this point, but let’s see how the next couple of weeks unfold.
Of the 6 players listed above, I think the Irish land about 4 of them. That puts this class at 24 recruits, but we could also still see one leave to bring it back down to 23.
Currently, Notre Dame has 20 commitments and the 11th ranked class according to the 247 Composite Rankings.