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Notre Dame Football Recruiting

Recruiting Week In Review

December 12, 2020

Written by Joe Bradshaw

It would be a huge understatement to say that universities and prospects have been forced to make significant changes in the recruiting process. Yet, both have found ways to make it work. These adaptations have not been ideal but they’ve been effective. Zoom calls have replaced face to face meetings, texts and other forms of messaging have always been used but now have taken on even more importance. Finally, while coaches can’t host recruits on campus, there’s no rules against prospects coming to campus on their own time and on their own dime and a surprising number have done just that. Last week Irish Sports Daily reported on two recruits, one in the Class of 2021 and the other in the Class of 2022 who came to campus on Syracuse gameday. What have you been missing by not being a member of Irish Sports Daily?

Ceyair Wright‍, CB, 6-0, 170, Loyola High School of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA visited Notre Dame in December of 2019 suspecting at some point that he’d be returning. On the weekend of the Syracuse game, almost exactly a year later, Wright made it back to South Bend but he could not possibly have imagined how different his return would be. Prior to his arriving on campus, ISD spoke to the four-star cornerback about how this visit would differ from his first.

“It’ll be all right,” he said. “I’ve done this already so it’s just kind of doing my own thing and exploring by myself.”

Notre Dame isn’t the only school that Wright has visited in this manner. He’s also taken trips to USC, Michigan and Oregon this fall. His father accompanied him on his last trip to South Bend but this time he’s bringing his mother.

“It’s just about getting my mom to see the place and see the atmosphere and see how she likes it,” he explained. “I think she’ll like the atmosphere. It’s a lot different than LA. It’s a lot calmer, it’s a lot less busy. I’m a fan of those types of environments and I think she is too.”

Wright wants to not only learn more about Notre Dame but also about South Bend in general.

“Just trying to see a little bit more of the surrounding area, see what’s going on around there besides the campus,” he shared.

Notre Dame offered Wright in August of 2019 and have been high on his list ever since.

“It’s a very prestigious place and I think it’s very similar to the school that I’m at already at Loyola,” he said. “I think it’s a good balance of academics and athletics.”

Wright has nearly a month before he decides his college choice and is considering taking more visits before then.

“Penn State is a school that has really been trying to get me to come visit and so has ASU,” he said. “We’ll see if I can make it out there.”

Like Wright, Sebastian Cheeks‍, LB, 6-2, 199, Evanston Township High School, Evanston, IL attended Notre Dame’s last home game in 2019 and was also there for the last home game in 2020. While the experiences were vastly different, he enjoyed both.

“It was good to get back on campus, getting a good feel for things, especially being there with the parents, just to get them on page with where my head is at,” Cheeks explained. “Overall, it’s a good experience. Obviously, we couldn’t do much, but just getting back on campus and then watching the game, looking at the food spots, just kind of getting a feel for things again.”

Cheeks and his family found a spot near campus to watch the game and the four-star junior liked what he saw.

“Slow start, but the defense always shows up,” he commented. “Those guys are resilient. Jeremiah (Owusus-Koramoah) is always balling and then, obviously, Ian Book again. It was Senior Day, so they definitely showed up.”

Cheeks is being recruited by Defensive Coordinator and Linebackers Coach Clark Lea. The two have stayed in frequent contact. He’s also being recruited by Michigan, Texas, Wisconsin, Stanford and many others.

“I always have a lot of talks with Coach Lea hearing exactly where he believes I would fit in, which is more of a hybrid spot,” he shared. “As I look more and more at the defense, there are positions to make plays all of the time. Obviously, I think I’m going to put on some more size, but as of right now, that’s where they like me at.”

Cheeks’ parents were impressed by the campus.

“They’re kind of where my head is at as well,” he said. “They were just excited to see everything, so overall it went pretty good.”

Cheeks is uncertain about what’s going to happen next in his recruiting but is certain that Notre Dame will be involved.

“Just continue to build my relationship with all of the coaches, enjoy the process and continue to build my information on Notre Dame itself,” he said of how he plans to address recruiting moving forward. “Obviously, the recruiting period got pushed back a little bit further than we like, but I’m just going to continue to reach out and get a better feel for things, whether it’s back in South Bend or not.”

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

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