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Notre Dame Football Recruiting

The Updated ISD Fab 50

July 9, 2018

Attending The Opening Finals is the best chance anyone has all year to see the majority of the top prospects in the nation competing against one another. At the end of the recruiting cycle, the talent is typically split between the Under Armour and (the former) Army All-American game. The Opening brings the majority the talent that will be competing at those games together.

It’s best on best. 4-star against 5-star. Sometimes it’s a 3-star showing that they should be a 4-star a 5-star showing they should probably be a 4-star instead. All put together it’s a great way to compare and contrast prospects against one another while they are all on the same field.

Now that it’s finished, it’s given me a chance to go and update ISD’s rankings on certain prospects and adjust the Fab 50 to reflect those rankings.

It’s not a huge change from the initial 50. There are only six new names on the list after those prospects showed out at the camp and forced me to revisit their junior film. However, there were a couple of big moves from players that were already in the initial 50. A few of them have set themselves up to be in the 5-star conversation heading into their senior year.

No need to keep everyone waiting any longer, here it is (with some background information below)

The Updated ISD Fab 50


- First things first, a Notre Dame commit dropped off of the list. It was nothing that Quinn Carroll‍ did as he was not there competing. It was that certain players near the bottom of the list moved up and some new names pushed their way into the 50.

- Without Carroll there really is no prospect on the list that the Irish are heavily in the mix for. New addition Max Williams‍ (45) has the Irish on his list, but it will be tough to pull him away from the west coast. Unfortunately that’s about it for Notre Dame, which I know people won’t be happy about.

It is worth noting that I have four ND commits in my top-100, though: Carroll (53), Jacob Lacey‍  (70), NaNa Osafo-Mensah‍ (74) and Kyle Hamilton‍ (76). They all should have a shot at making the final ISD Fab 50 .

- I have nine offensive linemen listed. Six of them are offensive tackles. Four of them moved up the list. Texas A&M commit Kenyon Green‍ went from 12 to 11, Darnell Wright‍ went from 49 to 28, Jonah Tauanu'u‍ went from 47 to 35, and Evan Neal‍ went from not on the list all the way up to 24.

Neal lost 30 pounds heading into the camp and it worked out really well for him. If he keeps his weight down then he is on track to be a 5-star. I graded him out at 92 prior to going to Dallas and have him at 96 after it.

- Three receivers made big moves. Auburn commit George Pickens‍ was not on the list and now is at 17. He was outstanding and made a bunch of spectacular grabs during the week. Everything about him screams prototype number one receiver.

Kyle Ford‍ was the most dominant player the entire camp and he was running by, through, and going over the top of cornerbacks. I think it helped him quite a bit that he had his high school quarterback throwing to him all the time, but what he accomplished can’t be denied. Virtually every corner that had him in man struggled to slow him down. He’s at 32.

Ohio State commit Garrett Wilson‍ jumped from 23 to 13. I might be just delaying the inevitable with him by not making him a 5-star yet, but he’s inching closer.

- It’s a bad year for quarterbacks in terms of the top tier talent. Auburn commit Bo Nix‍ remains the only one on this list although Oklahoma commit Spencer Rattler‍ came close (58). Rattler was far more advanced going through progressions than he showed on film and he made some ridiculous throws in the tiniest of windows.

- It’s not a great year at defensive tackle either and it showed at The Opening. One bright spot was Siake Ika‍, a beast of a nose tackle that let everyone know he can be more than just a two-gap run-stuffer at the next level.

Jacob Bandes‍, a player that Matt Freeman let me know about very early in the process, came very close to making it. I bumped him up from a 94 to a 95 after his MVP performance, but he missed out and is at 59 in my rankings.

- 31 of 50 had an offer from Notre Dame. Only three are from the Midwest and 12 have taken visits to Notre Dame (with Max Williams making it 13 after an official visit this fall). Those are tough odds to go up against when trying to land the best players in the nation.

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