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Photo by Jalen Lewis
Notre Dame Football Recruiting

2023 CB Jalen Lewis Focused on Football & Medical Field

January 23, 2021

Notre Dame fans might not be familiar with 2023 Oaks Christian (Calif.) cornerback Jalen Lewis‍, but if you know him, it's no surprise he's taken it on himself to lead his teammates through the COVID pandemic. 

California hasn't played football (yet) and the 5-foot-9, 180-pounder hasn't missed a beat. He holds workouts in his garage with his friends to make sure they're ready to go if California decides to play this spring. 

"It's definitely difficult not being able to be at school and not being able to be with the full team," Lewis told ISD. "My closest friends and I have a pretty firm schedule with how we lift. We go Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday. I have them over at 4:30 and we just get after it in our garage.

"I have plenty of saved workouts from my last years of lifting. So we just get it." 

Like most kids in the state, Lewis lost vital game film this fall, but he's stayed positive and focused on 7-on-7. 

"I play for the Premium 7-on-7 organization," said Lewis. "We actually just got back from Arizona. There was the big Arizona 7-on-7 that we actually won. We won the championship. So I've been having a great time with 7-on-7.

"We have another tournament in Seattle in a couple of weeks. I'm staying on top of it as it relates to the on-field reps, of course, in a safe environment, keeping my mask on and stuff like that. I'm pretty on top of it in that aspect."

Oaks Christian is one of the top programs on the West Coast and Lewis played plenty as a freshman as he recorded 76 tackles and two interceptions. The successful campaign led to offers from Arizona State, Kansas, New Mexico, Oregon State, Southern Miss and Virginia Tech. 

Lewis is extremely grateful for the offers and it has led to an even greater focus on his dreams. 

"I definitely consider it a major blessing," Lewis said of the early offers. "I'm very thankful to have been exposed at such a young age and getting the six offers as a freshman. 

"I acknowledge it and I understand I put in the work. I also understand nothing is given and it's earned. I take it as motivation. I use each offer as another level of motivation to keep working and pushing because the schools I really want, the Notre Dame's, Stanford's and Washington's, the higher academic schools that also have a great football program, I'm striving for those. I use each offer as motivation towards the offers I truly want." 

Notre Dame hasn't landed a player from Oaks Christian since Jimmy Clausen, but it's a program Lewis and his friends speak highly of on a regular basis. 

"Everyone loves Notre Dame at my school," Lewis explained. "We talk about schools all the time when we're down in the coach's office. We talk about the big schools that we would love to get offers from and exposed to. Notre Dame is definitely one that's spoken highly of at our school.

"Notre Dame has both parts that everyone wants in a school. Great academics and great football, so when you see a school like that, it's not very common. It's put higher on the list and it's definitely loved."

Lewis has had some initial contact with Notre Dame with mailings and he hopes to see that ramp up as it has always been one of his top schools. 

"Notre Dame, Washington and Stanford have always been in my top five," stated Lewis. "Everyone has their top five favorite schools, so for me, it's Stanford, Washington, Notre Dame and Cal - prestigious schools that have both sides of what I'm looking for. Those are the main four I've always held the standard for myself to strive for and what I've always reached for." 

Whether it's on or off the field, Lewis' maturity will lead him to success. 

Lewis hopes to go into the medical field and he's already striving for bigger goals than most his age. 

"I've always wanted to be a doctor because I've always wanted to help people," said Lewis. "I made the decision this year to shoot to be a pediatric surgeon. I really like kids and being around them. I love caring for them, but I want to be in the medical field. Going to a school that also has a great medical program is something I'm striving for." 

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