Notre Dame Football Recruiting

Recruiting Week In Review

June 15, 2017

Written by Joe Bradshaw

Irish Invasion not only provides recruits with a chance to earn a scholarship offer but also gives the Notre Dame coaching staff an opportunity to evaluate those same recruits on the field. It also enables the Irish staff to gain a clearer picture of already offered prospects. Last weekend, the Notre Dame coaches did just that while at the same time also making their pitches to uncommitted players. Irish Sports Daily spoke to two young men that already possessed Notre Dame scholarship offers prior to the Invasion and got their reactions. What have you been missing by not being a member of Irish Sports Daily? 

DJ Johnson, CB, 5-11, 170, North Central High School, Indianapolis, IN showed up at Irish Invasion to demonstrate to the Notre Dame coaches that their scholarship offer to him was well-deserved. He didn’t really get to do that though because he tweaked an ankle very early on and didn’t get to play nearly as much as he had hoped. He still enjoyed his time on campus.

“I got to spend more time with the coaches and start to build a relationship with them,” he shared. “I got to meet the entire strength staff. I got to see the campus and all of the facilities and things they plan on building. The campus was beautiful. The facilities and things they’re building look like they’re going to be real good. They’re putting a lot of time and effort into it, so it’s going to be nice.” 

Johnson was impressed with the new Notre Dame strength staff, especially Matt Balis.

“The strength staff is cool,” he said. “They seem to know what they’re doing, top of the line. I like the strength staff a lot.” 

Originally, Johnson planned to use Irish Invasion to earn a scholarship offer but when Notre Dame offered him last month, he viewed it as an opportunity to demonstrate that they had made a good decision. It was not to be however.

“I didn’t get to show them too much because during one on ones, I ended up twisting my ankle again and sitting out,” he explained. “But they said they already knew what I could do and things like that, so they weren’t too worried about that.” 

Johnson did manage to get a much better feel for Notre Dame Defensive Backs Coach Todd Lyght.

“Coach Lyght was real cool,” he said. “He’s easy to talk to. He knows what he’s doing. He was in The League for twelve years so he’s got a lot of knowledge.” 

The three-star defensive back also met and spent time with a number of the Notre Dame 2018 commits.

“I got a chance to hang out with a lot of the commits and talk to them a lot,” he said. “They were really cool. I got a lot of their numbers and Twitters and stuff so we’ll be talking.” 

Johnson currently has Notre Dame and Iowa heading his list and Irish Invasion didn’t change that. Still, he does now have a much better understanding of what the Irish offer. And while he didn’t commit, he did confess that the idea at least crossed his mind.

“I didn’t think about pulling the trigger while I was there, but it was definitely tempting,” he admitted. “I know I’ll be up there a couple more times real soon.”

Irish Sports Daily

Jayson Oweh, DE, 6-5, 236, Blair Academy, Blairstown, NJ also came to Irish Invasion with a scholarship offer but, unlike Johnson, he did get a chance to participate and wowed the Notre Dame coaches. 

“I (set a personal record) on the 40, I know I could do better on that time,” he said. “It felt good to get the time I wanted and I still think I can probably do better on that. I did well on the broad jump as well.”

The Irish coaches wasted no words in letting Oweh know how they viewed his performance. 

“They were really impressed,” he shared. “They loved what I did in pass rushing and how quickly I picked up on the new stuff we learned.”

Oweh relished the opportunity to get to know the Notre Dame coaches better and came away very impressed with them. 

“How strict they were with everything and all of their rules and everything,” he said of what resonated with him. “It was great because it lets you know you have structure to everything.”

Oweh also enjoyed meeting with current and future Notre Dame players. 

“I was talking with Justin and Jayson Ademilola a lot,” he said of the New Jersey twins that are currently committed. “They were just throwing their pitches out for Notre Dame. They let me know a lot of the good stuff about Notre Dame, all of the perks to it and everything.”

Oweh not only fit in well with the Ademilolas but with the current players as well. 

“They were really social, really self-driven,” he shared. “They know the benefits of Notre Dame are great. It’s a forty year decision. They’re basically the same type of people as me so that’s cool to know.”

Oweh went on his first campus tour and learned much about Notre Dame and its history. He also got to glimpse the future when he learned about the changes that will soon be coming. 

“They’re doing a lot of renovations to the stadium so that was cool,” he said. “I can’t wait to see when that stuff is finished.”

He definitely plans to make a return trip to South Bend. 

“Obviously, just to continue this process,” he said of why he would be returning. Head out to some games to see how the atmosphere of everything is. Honestly, Notre Dame is up there on my list.”

He visited Ohio State the Friday before Irish Invasion and left stating that the Buckeyes had gained a lead over Notre Dame and Penn State. After being at Notre Dame it appears as if he might be re-thinking that assessment. 

“I have to re-evaluate everything, but Notre Dame definitely jumped up a lot.”

These two summaries represent just a sample of the Notre Dame football recruiting information available each week on Irish Sports Daily.

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Recruiting Week In Review

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