Junior Day Update: Dallas Gant

February 12, 2017

Junior Day at Notre Dame was a chance for 2018 linebacker Dallas Gant to get a feel for the new coaching staff and the people around the Irish football program.

The 6-foot-3, 210-pounder has been a frequent visitor to South Bend, so seeing the campus and facilities is something he had done before, but getting to know the people he could be working with over the next four years was important for the four-star prospect.

“I was looking forward to seeing the new coaches, Coach (Mike) Elko and Coach (Clark) Lea,” Gant told Irish Sports Daily. “I was interested in talking with them and seeing Coach (Brian) Kelly again too.

“They seemed like really good people. I had talked to Coach Lea on the phone and texted with Coach Elko before. It was the first time I had gotten to meet Coach Elko.”

The St. Johns (Ohio) star enjoyed his time with the defensive coaches and got a feel for the scheme coming to Notre Dame.

“They came off as a great people and coaches,” said Gant. “They’ve done a lot of special things with their defense at Bowling Green and Wake Forest. They really excel at defense and the scheme they are putting in at Notre Dame is really cool.”

Gant also saw how he would be put into the defense and it’s a position he definitely could see himself playing. Elko wants to use Gant’s frame and athleticism, while Lea would train him to be effective on the inside and outside of the defense.

“I got to talk to Coach Elko where I would play and I spoke to Coach Lea about how he coaches his linebackers,” Gant explained. “Coach Elko has me playing at the outside/weak linebacker position. It’s called the Buck position and it does various things there.

“I think that position would be pretty cool. Coach Lea does a lot of different things to help train his athletes to do those positions. He trains them to play inside or outside. I think it would be a really cool position to play.”

He explained what it takes to be at Notre Dame and to be successful at Notre Dame. We had a nice talk with him and I enjoyed it. - Dallas Gant on his talk with Brian Kelly
The opportunity to meet with Kelly was also important for Gant and his parents. They had met Kelly on previous visits but never got the chance to really sit down and speak with him.

“He sat down with my family and me,” stated Gant. “He was talking about how Notre Dame helps you for the future. He was telling us about how the school helped you for not only the next four years but for the next 40 years.

“He explained what it takes to be at Notre Dame and to be successful at Notre Dame. We had a nice talk with him and I enjoyed it.”

Kelly and Notre Dame also made it clear there were changes to The Gug coming for the football team and it’s something Gant was excited about, but don’t expect him to base his decision off facilities.  

“It doesn’t really matter to me,” Gant said of the facilities. “Most schools I am considering have great facilities. It is interesting to see what they are creating at Notre Dame with the changes they are making, but I don’t think it will make that much of a difference. Every school has great facilities and unique things when it comes to facilities.”

The coaching staff gave their pitch to Gant, but so did the 2018 commits. Notre Dame fans know Markese Stepp and the Ademilola twins were working on everyone, but fellow linebacker Bo Bauer also made sure Gant felt the love from the class.

“They are great people,” laughed Gant. “I know most of them and I got to meet some of the guys like the twins that I hadn’t met before. They joke around a lot and were telling me to commit the whole time. They are just kids having fun.”

In terms of a commitment, Gant is taking his time and will continue to make his visits this spring. The Ohio native is a wanted man, so figuring out what he exactly wants in a school this spring is huge.  

“I am trying to enjoy the process right now,” said Gant. “I am trying to make a decision before my senior season, but I don’t know how that is going to go I’ll make a decision before my senior year or at least cut the list down at that time.”
Discussion from...

Junior Day Update: Dallas Gant

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Sounds like they should have a solid shot at this kid (from my hometown btw). ND did not take Baron Browning last year, so the path to playing time should be easier at ND, but obviously that hasn't stopped elite players from committing to OSU in the past. I don't think there's a real Buckeye bias here as we're actually closer to Ann Arbor so it's pretty much split..so maybe add in the Kizer factor along with two great recruiters in Elko and Lea going after the kid and I have to say that I'm pretty hopeful. Gotta stay on him and get him back 2-3 more times before his tentative plan of deciding before his senior season.
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Every year ND has the kid that seems like a near-lock because he is on campus so much and seems like an "ND type kid" and for whatever reason it never materializes. My pick for that kid this year is Gant.
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