Story Poster
Photo by Rick Kimball/ISD
Notre Dame Football Recruiting

Notre Dame Excited About 2023 Defensive Line Haul

December 29, 2022

Notre Dame may not have landed a prototypical Vyper prospect, but the Irish did manage to sign four defensive linemen for their 2023 recruiting class.

Last week, they received National Letters of Intent from Ohio’s Brenan Vernon‍, Massachusetts’ Boubacar Traore‍, and a pair of Canadians in Armel Mukam‍ and Devan Houstan‍.

“We need length,” Irish head coach Marcus Freeman said during his National Signing Day press conference. “That's something we're looking for is length. You would like length at every position on your team.”

Vernon, Traore and Mukam are all listed at 6-4, 250 while Houstan checks in at 6-4, 275.

“Our outside guys are a little bit longer than what we've got in our tackles in Devan and Armel,” Freeman said. “But, again, you're always looking for length. That's important. But I don't think we sit here and say, 'You have to have this certain arm reach. You have to be at a certain height.'

“When I see Brenan Vernon or Boubacar, I look and say, OK, they're a little bit longer than maybe Devan and Armel, but the skillsets are different also.' What we're looking for those inside guys to be able to do is a different skillset than sometimes when we look for those outside guys.”

Defensive coordinator Al Golden said all four have “a chance to come in and compete early.”

“That’s going to be important for the depth,” Golden continued. “Boubacar length, rangy, probably in that 240 range right now. At some point here we’ll get him up to 255, 260, I’m sure.

“Brenan brings physical assets. He’s strong, he’s tough, he’s a competitor. Devan is another guy that brings size inside. Mukam strength.”

Freeman talked about why the Irish were so excited about plucking Mukam from Stanford, where he was once committed.

“Very intelligent kid,” Freeman said. “He's a good football player. He watches film. He makes a lot of plays. I wasn't really familiar was some of the schools he was playing. And so, you get to know him as an individual.

“And you say, OK, man, he's an intelligent young man, loves the game of football, has those intangibles that we're looking for.' And I'm dang glad we got him because I think he'll do some great things for us.”

Golden said, “Just overall, I’m excited about that group and anxious to get them here and get them going.”

Under Armour Green Fighting Irish Lightweight Performance Quarter-Zip ($79.99)

subscribe Verify your student status
See Subscription Benefits
Trial only available to users who have never subscribed or participated in a previous trial.