Notre Dame Football Recruiting

Recruiting Week In Review

September 9, 2019

September 1st is a big day in recruiting.  It’s the first day that college coaches can contact high school juniors directly.  Any recruit that receives contact from a school on September 1st can be pretty certain that school is interested in him.  Last week Irish Sports Daily reported on two Class of 2021 recruits that Notre Dame made a point of contacting on September 1st.  What have you been missing by not being a member of Irish Sports Daily?

Riley Mahlman‍, OL, 6-8, 270, Lakeville South High School, Lakeville, MN does not have a Notre Dame scholarship offer.  And while he clearly would like the Irish to step up, he also has no doubt that they are very interested in him.  On September 1st he not only heard from Notre Dame but heard multiple times from multiple people.

“I heard from Aaryn Kearney,” he shared.  “I heard from (Notre Dame Offensive Line Coach) Jeff Quinn and a couple others.”

They all had the same message for the four-star lineman.  They explained to him what it takes to be a player at Notre Dame and that they believe he has it.

“It really tells me they’re still interested and we’re keeping in good contact,” he said.  “That’s always good.”

Mahlman and Quinn have stayed in close contact for a long time now.  He and Quinn speak weekly.

“He just says, ‘Keep developing as a player,’” he said of Quinn’s message.  “’Keep doing what you’re doing.  Let the process run and see where you end up.’”

While Notre Dame has yet to offer, a number of Power Five schools have thrown their hat in the ring for his eventual signature.  The schools include Ohio State, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Northwestern, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa and others.   Mahlman admits that he’s motivated by trying to earn an Irish scholarship offer.

“They’re a top end offensive line school and top end overall,” he said.  “They’re definitely not throwing out offers left and right like some other schools.  They’re one of the schools with the least amount of offers out.  I just have to be patient.  If it comes, it comes.”

And Mahlman hopes it does come.

“It’d mean a lot,” he admitted.  “It’s unique when you’re one of the top programs in the country football-wise and also top notch academically.  It’s also a highly religious school and I’m Catholic, so it’s a really good combination for me.”

Mahlman is searching for a date to attend a game this season.  He was in South Bend for a game last year and for the Blue-Gold game last spring.  Though he’s seen most of what the Irish have to offer, he’s still excited for another visit.

“I just want to keep in contact with Coach (Quinn), see him in person,” he explained.  “Seeing the game day atmosphere is always fun.”

Mahlman hasn’t narrowed his recruiting list much less set up a timeline for a decision.

Irish Sports Daily

Like Mahlman, Damon Owens‍, S, 6-2, 215, Brentwood Academy, Brentwood, TN heard from Notre Dame on September 1st.  Though he hadn’t heard much from the Irish since a July visit, their contacting him on the first day they were allowed to do so sent a loud and clear message that they’re very interested in him. 

During his July visit, one of the aspects of Notre Dame that stood out to Owens was the expectations they had for their scholarship football players.

“They demand excellence,” he noted.

Also like Mahlman, Owens is waiting for an Irish scholarship offer.  He does have offers from a number of Power Five schools.  Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Penn State, Kentucky, Louisville and Missouri have all made formal offers to him.

Owens plans to keep a busy fall schedule, attending games at as many schools as possible.  He’s already hit up Vanderbilt and Missouri and will be at Kentucky this weekend.  He’s also got his eye on stops at Tennessee, South Carolina, Michigan and Ohio State. 

Notre Dame may eventually end up on his visit list.  It’s clear that the Irish are interested and it looks as if his recruiting is about to receive a major boost.

These two summaries represent just a sample of Notre Dame football recruiting information available each week on Irish Sports Daily.

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