Photo by Rick Kimball/ISD

Denson Gets His Guy In Kyren Williams

December 22, 2018

Notre Dame only signed one running back in the Class of 2019 on Wednesday, but for Autry Denson, that was plenty.

The Irish running backs coach said it was “very exciting” to receive a signed National Letter of Intent from St. Louis running back Kyren Williams‍.

“I’m even more excited because I got my guy,” Denson said during’s Signing Day Show. “I got the guy that I wanted from the beginning of the process, so that just adds to it.

“He was my guy from the beginning. We’re thankful that we were also his choice too.”

As Denson learned more about the St. John Vianney star’s background, the more he became confident in his chances of landing him.

“He was a diehard Notre Dame fan growing up,” Denson explained. “Matter of fact, one Christmas, all he wanted for a Christmas gift was a Notre Dame Football camp, so his grandmother bought it for him.

“Once I found that out, it kind of made sense. I kind of asked him, ‘Why are we wasting time?’”

Williams announced his decision to commit to the Irish in June over offers from schools like Wisconsin, Northwestern, Nebraska and Stanford among several others.

He enjoyed a superb senior season, rushing for 2,035 yards and 26 touchdowns on 176 carries while catching 55 passes for another 725 yards and 10 scores.

“He is just fast,” Denson said. “He is a fast guy. He’s a baller. Kyren can play. Pretty much anywhere you put him on the football field, he will make plays and he showed that. He had a great senior year. He just continued to trend upward like we wanted to see. We’re excited to get him here midyear.”

Denson said he’d gotten close with Williams’ entire family through the process.

“The only way you can really develop and mentor young men is to get involved with everyone who is important to them,” he said. “It’s bigger than football. It’s a life decision, so when we say they join the family, all of their family joins the family.”

Denson, himself a former star running back for Notre Dame, is confident that Williams and the other players who signed with the Irish on Wednesday will succeed on and off the field in the years to come.

“That’s why you come to Notre Dame. That’s where good student-athletes come to be great. You don’t have to compromise either one.”

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