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Notre Dame Football

Grad Transfer S Antonio Carter II Planning Notre Dame Visit

May 6, 2023

It’s not a secret Notre Dame would love to add another safety to its room as the Irish staff had concerns before spring ball even finished. 

In fact, on April 4th, Notre Dame safeties coach Chris O’Leary was transparent and admitted he had already told his room the program would likely look to the Transfer Portal for another safety. 

“It’s evaluating this spring how ready our two-deep was to play on the big stage and push for a national title,” O’Leary explained. “That’s the decision we’re making. Beyond that, we have numbers that we want to get guys to develop. We’re always evaluating that situation. I’ve told them we might look in the portal in May. It just depends. That’s a fluid situation.”

Fast forward a month and Notre Dame has offered Rhode Island graduate transfer Antonio Carter II, who recorded 60 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, one sack, one interception and 10 pass breakups in 2022. 

“We chopped it up for a little bit and then he put me on the phone with Coach Freeman and I spoke with him,” Carter said of his conversation with O’Leary. “Coach Freeman talked again later in the day and got on the phone with my parents and he told me I had the offer. He told me when they wanted me to visit and let my parents ask him a couple questions.” 

The 6-foot-1, 200-pounder has enjoyed getting to know O’Leary as the two have shared more than a few laughs. 

“I feel he’s a good energy person,” said Carter, who has two years of eligibility left. “We just laughed a lot. I feel like I would like his personality for sure. I know at the end of the day, my decision will be about business. I know he has a good personality because he had me laughing. He’s cool. I like him.” 

Carter also came away with a positive impression of Freeman after connecting a few times. 

“He was cool too,” Carter stated. “As a head coach, they aren’t very personable - some of them. He seemed like he’s very personable. I like him and his energy.” 

Life has been a whirlwind for Carter over the last three weeks. On April 16th, Carter entered the Transfer Portal and there hasn’t been a lack of interest in the Florida native. 

Baylor, Georgia Tech, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Middle Tennessee State, Minnesota, Notre Dame, Ole Miss, Oregon State, SMU, South Florida, Texas A&M,UNLV, Utah State, Virginia Tech, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin have all offered. 

“It’s been a lot,” Carter explained. “It’s been a blessing having all these big programs hitting me up and showing interest in me. It has been a little stressful. I want to make sure I pick the right school and the best school to do well and succeed. I want a school where I’m going to play. I don’t want to leave for a school and be a background player or something like that. It’s been stressful because everyone is talking good about their schools. 

“God will lead me.” 

Carter is focused on building relationships to feel out each coaching staff, but he’s also making sure to do his own research on each program under consideration. 

“I’m just doing my research on these schools,” Carter said. “I’m looking at the roster, the background and how they’ve been and how their players and teams have played. On top of that, I’ve asked God to give me the spirit of discernment to allow him to show me what’s real and what’s not. 

“For the most part, you can kind of see it. I think I’ve done a good job of reading people. You just have to do your research.” 

Ole Miss and Wisconsin have hosted Carter and he expects to take two or three more. Notre Dame will be one of those trips and Carter is in the process of figuring out how to work the rest of his schedule as he wants to visit Iowa and Kentucky too. 

“We’re talking about me visiting sometime mid-next week,” Carter said of getting to South Bend. “I think like Wednesday or Thursday to Saturday. I want to go ahead and see these schools so I can make a good decision.”

As for a decision, Carter knows schools are on different timelines due to academic calendars, but ideally, he’ll have a decision sooner than later. 

“I graduate May 20th,” said Carter. “I’m hoping to shut it down by then. After these visits, I’ll do a lot of praying and hopefully, I’ll feel good in my heart about where I want to be. That’s kind of my date, but if it’s not the 20th, it won’t be too long after that.” 

Career Stats
Games: 21
Tackles: 105
TFL: 5.5
Sacks: 2
INT: 1 
PD: 17
FF: 3
FR: 3

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