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Notre Dame Football Recruiting

“I’ve always loved Notre Dame" - 2019 K Harrison Leonard

September 12, 2018

Recruiting can change in a second and that’s what happened to 2019 Avon Old Farms (Conn.) kicker Harrison Leonard‍.

The 6-foot, 180-pounder hadn’t heard much from Notre Dame until recently, and now Leonard will be in South Bend this weekend for an official visit. 

“A couple of days ago I got on the phone with Coach Polian,” Leonard told Irish Sports Daily. “It’s been a short process, but it’s been good. We’ve just gone from there and built a relationship.” 

It was apparently a pleasant surprise for Leonard when Polian reached out as the Irish were a team Leonard has always followed.

“It was definitely a big surprise,” Leonard stated. “I’ve always loved Notre Dame, and my mom’s family is from around there, so I’ve always admired the program. I’ve always wanted to be in contact with the coaches, but had never been able to until now, which is awesome.” 

“We’re all beyond excited. I can’t wait.” 

It’s easy to see where Leonard’s love for the Notre Dame comes from as his family is tied to the University in many ways, but the Avon Old Farms standout is looking forward to experiencing life in South Bend as a recruit. 

“I went to a game a few years ago,” explained Leonard. “I think they were playing Temple on opening day. My great uncle had season tickets, so we always tried to make some games.

“My cousin goes there right now, so she’s helped me out a lot. I want to get to know the coaches. I’m looking forward to building relationships this weekend.” 

Leonard is also a standout baseball player. However, he will be kicking in college as he decided to focus on football. 

“It was something I was looking into, but I became really passionate about becoming a kicker, and that’s taken over my recruitment,” said Leonard. “I used to want to play college baseball, but I’m all in on football.” 

The focus on football has helped Leonard improve his craft as he has taken significant steps forward in his game, including hitting 61-yard field goals on multiple occasions at Kohl’s Kicking Camps. 

“I go to a boarding school, so after study hall at night, I would work in the gym with my long snapper,” Leonard said. “I was always kicking and really focused on it. I flew out to Dallas for a few days in the winter and worked with Jamie Kohl one-on-one. 

“It’s been a grind, but I’m just trusting the process. I’m just trying to get better every day.” 

Leonard is being recruited by a few schools on the East Coast, but it’s clear his focus is on this weekend’s official visit to Notre Dame and seeing where he stands with the staff. 

The Irish might not be able to offer a scholarship with tight numbers and already having a specialist in the class, but a preferred walk-on offer could be a game-changer for Leonard.

“It would be huge for me.” 

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