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Notre Dame Football

10,000 Miles in Four Days Worth It For Notre Dame HC Marcus Freeman & Staff

December 9, 2021
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Marcus Freeman was introduced on Monday afternoon as Notre Dame's football head coach and then went on a national media tour as he traveled around the country recruiting. 

Several quotes have been highlighted for many reasons over the few days, but one sticks out more than any other, and Freeman has already backed up those words in just four days. 

"I better be the number one recruiter," Freeman said on Monday. "I better be the lead recruiter in every kid that we recruit. I plan on doing it. We obviously have to depend on our staff and I will depend on our staff to make sure we know who and what and why we are recruiting every individual, but if I'm not the lead recruiter, then we're cheating them."

Freeman and current Director of Defensive Recruiting Chad Bowden have been in Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, New Jersey, South Carolina, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin. 

In four days, Freeman will have hit every corner of the country and traveled well over 10,000 miles since Monday's press conference inside the Irish Athletics Center. 

It's setting a tone for his tenure and his staff. Offensive coordinator Tommy Rees is likely approaching Freeman’s miles as he’s been on several of the same flights, but there isn't another head coach in the country with Freeman's itinerary. 

Recruiting is something you have to do as a head coach, but successful coaches want to do it.

Freeman wants to do it and wants to do it for Notre Dame, which means going the extra mile. 

There was no better example than on Wednesday afternoon when weather prevented Freeman's private jet from landing in Hilton Head (S.C.). 

A decision had to be made even if it meant being late to see 2022 defensive back Devin Moore‍, who lives in Naples (Fla.) 

And it was a no-brainer. The plane with Freeman, Bowden and Mike Mickens landed in Savannah (Ga.). 

The trio made the 49-minute drive because it was essential to get face-to-face with 2022 five-star linebacker commit Jaylen Sneed‍ and his mother. 

That’s effort. Recruits, coaches and families feel it when it's there and certainly notice it when it's not. 

Freeman knows it will take effort to win more battles with Alabama, Clemson, Georgia and Ohio State, but he's up for the challenge and perhaps the most significant piece to the puzzle is the fact he truly believes in Notre Dame. 

"It's the ability to communicate with the best players in the country that this place is special," said Freeman. "People keep saying, 'What's the difference? What do you understand about this place now that you're here?' Maybe at 16 or 17 and when I was a recruit, I was looking for, 'Hey, where can I go win a national championship?'

"Well, if that's all you're looking for, you can look right here at Notre Dame because we've been in the playoffs two out of the past three years. But it's still below it to show these young people, get their mind to think past football, get their minds to think whatever that point is, as these guys will tell you, whenever that point is when you're done playing, it could be after your senior year, it can be one year in the NFL, it could be 10 years in the NFL, the minute you're done playing, that's to me where the value of Notre Dame really shows itself.

"That's what we got to be able to do - get these young people that are the best players in the country that fit Notre Dame to understand there is no better option for you."

 
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