Elston Headed Across Pond To Check On 2019 DE

January 29, 2019

Notre Dame has shown a willingness to look anywhere and everywhere for prospects it believes would fit the program and help.

Back in November, the Irish proved that means prospects overseas when they extended an offer to Alexander Ehrensberger‍, a defensive end from Germany.

Now, Notre Dame is taking a serious look at another German defensive end and this one is in the Class of 2019, meaning he’ll be announcing his decision in a little over a week.

Irish defensive line coach Mike Elston is headed to Germany this week, where he’ll check in on Ehrensberger and others, including 2019 defensive end Joseph Appiah Darkwa‍.

“He’s coming out to see Alexander and Darkwa and he’s coming to see four other kids,” said Brandon Collier, founder of PPI, a company that specializes in training and helping international prospects earn scholarships to play in the United States.

Darkwa has several offers, including schools like Penn State, UCLA, Rutgers, Colorado, Virginia and Georgia Tech among others.

“He’s 6-5, 275 and athletic,” Collier said. “He can move. When you’ve got a guy that big and twitchy like that, that’s what makes him special. He’s a great character kid. He’s quiet and humble.”

Darkwa’s recruitment has been accelerated in recent months.

“At first, he was supposed to be a 2020 kid, but he reclassified,” Collier explained. “If I would have put him out there as a 2019 kid seven months ago, he’d probably have every other. But like I said, Notre Dame and Penn State are recruiting him and others, so he’ll definitely have a good choice.”

Darkwa is fresh off official visits to Penn State and UCLA earlier this month and also took one to Rutgers back in November.

“He’s focusing on everybody,” said Collier. “It’s late in the game, so anyone who offers him a scholarship has his attention. Of course, the schools that he’s visited are probably a little higher in priority, but with Notre Dame coming over here to visit him, I’m sure that will be make a difference in his recruiting process.”

Notre Dame is “definitely” a school Darkwa will have serious interest in, according to Collier.

“The only reason I’d say it wouldn’t be a slam dunk right now is just because it came a little late in the process, but it’s not their fault because they just found out about him,” said Collier. “Of course, with the academics and the football Notre Dame plays, when Coach meets him.”

Things could move even quicker for Notre Dame this week.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if he came to visit,” Collier said. “I don’t know for sure, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he did if he gets offered.”

Darkwa is expected to commit and sign with a school by next Wednesday.

“Signing Day is coming up,” Collier said. “He’ll make a decision on Signing Day.

“If he comes to Notre Dame, he’ll be there on Thursday or Friday.”

Verify your student status
See Subscription Benefits
Trial only available to users who have never subscribed or participated in a previous trial.