Recruiting Week In Review
It’s crunch time for the recruiting Class of 2017. Notre Dame’s coaching staff is fighting until the very end to finish strongly. They have a number of official visits scheduled for the last recruiting weekend. Two of the prospects visiting fill important needs on the Irish defense. Landing these two young men would be a significant coup for new Notre Dame Defensive Coordinator Mike Elko. What have you been missing by not being a member of Irish Sports Daily?
Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, LB, 6-2, 195, Bethel High School, Hampton, VA was, until just a few days ago, committed to play football at the University of Virginia. Since his de-commitment, he has quickly narrowed his list to just two schools, Michigan State and Notre Dame. The Irish will get the last chance to host him for an official visit before he makes his final decision on National Signing Day.
“Signing Day is going to be Signing Day,” he explained. “It’s exciting. It’s going to be a big time decision and I’m looking forward to it.”
Owusu-Koramoah intends to let the two schools in contention know his plans before he announces them to the rest of the world but before any of that happens, he’s going to spend two days on Notre Dame’s campus.
“The tradition they have, the history behind the program and the success they have had,” he said of why he’s attracted to the Irish. “Notre Dame has always been one of my dream schools, so has Michigan State.”
Kelly visited the three-star Virginia linebacker at his school on Monday.
“He’s kind of like a legendary coach, so it was an honor to be in his presence,” he said. “When he came in like all the coaches do, it’s kind of like an eye test first off. Then he just really tried to speak to me with a standpoint away from football, kind of a personal standpoint, how am I doing in school. Then he was talking about Notre Dame and their program off the field and how it would set you up for life, the great academics, the great university and great fans they have.”
Kelly didn’t visit Owusu-Koramoah alone. With him were recruiting coordinator Mike Elston and Irish linebackers Coach Clark Lea.
“I knew Coach Lea since March when he was at Wake Forest, so I already have a connection with him,” Owusu-Koramoah said. “He’s just a Brainiac, he’s just a really great guy and really consistent I would say. I really don’t know Coach Elston like that but from his demeanor I would guess he’s probably the same.”
Owusu-Koramoah hopes to use his time on campus to get a better feel for everything associated with the school and program.
“I’d have to say the people around the program, the feeling that I get when I’m there, the strength coach and just all the coaches,” he said of what will be his top priorities on his visit. “I want to evaluate how they treat the players and how I interact with the guys on the team.”
Owusu-Koramoah spoke glowingly of his visit to Michigan State. He particularly cited the academics and strength and conditioning program.
His visit to South Bend will take place on a Thursday and Friday rather than on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday because of his basketball schedule. His team has a Friday night game against the defending state champions and Owusu-Koramoah is an integral part of his team. In fact, many think that he may consider walking on to the basketball team wherever he chooses to play his college football.
Another final weekend visitor is coming from the opposite side of the nation. Jalen Harris, DE, 6-4, 210, Desert Ridge High School, Mesa, AZ is still committed to the University of Arizona but is at least listening to the Irish. He hosted Elko and special teams coordinator Brian Polian on Monday and the two coaches painted of picture of how he would be used in their scheme.
“I’d be playing the Drop position,” he shared. “I can definitely see myself in that position and being able to have some success.”
Harris also got a chance to get to know two of the coaches for whom he would be playing.
“I got the feeling that they’re great people and that everything they told me was the truth,” he said.
Notre Dame has already gotten Harris’s attention before the in-home visit
“It has great tradition and has been a winning program,” he said. “Even though this was a bad year, they’re usually winning, so I definitely wanted to see what’s up there.”
Harris is looking forward to his visit to see if Notre Dame is the place he wants to spend the next few years of his life.
“Just to see the campus and to see if I’ll be comfortable there because I’ll be living there three to five years,” he explained. “I’ve got to make sure it’s a place where I feel comfortable and welcome.”
Harris has no such uncertainty with Arizona.
“They built a really good relationship with me,” he shared. “They were my first offer and it’s close to home, so that’s a plus.”
Still, he’s making sure that he checks all the recruiting boxes before making his final decision. In addition to his upcoming trip to South Bend, he’s previously visited Washington and Illinois.
“I’ve just got to make sure I make the right choice for me because it’s my decision and I have to live with it, so I have to make sure I really make the right decision.”
These two summaries represent just a sample of the Notre Dame football recruiting information available each week on Irish Sports Daily?