BREAKING | 2020 Four-Star DL Rylie Mills Commits To Notre Dame

May 6, 2019
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Notre Dame has landed its first commitment in May as 2020 Lake Forest (Ill.) defensive lineman Rylie Mills‍ has committed to the Irish. 

The four-star prospect committing to Notre Dame isn’t a huge surprise as the 6-foot-5, 275-pounder has been the South Bend multiple times and quarterbacks coach Tommy Rees hails from Lake Forest. 

However, the combination of academics and athletics was too much for Mills to pass up as he learned about all aspects of the program during his official visit in April, but fitting in with the players on the team might have been the tipping point. 

“High academics and competitive athletics were very important to me,” Mills told Irish Sports Daily. “Another big factor was fitting in with the players.”

Mills took official visits to Notre Dame, Ohio State and Wisconsin, which was enough for him to make his final decision as he trusted the advice of those around him to help with his choice.

“Talking with my family and people around me that have helped through the whole process was a big part of choosing a school,” explained Mills. “Also imagining what it would be like there was helpful.”

When it comes to football, Mills was also intrigued with defensive line coach Mike Elston’s plan to use him similar to Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa, which also includes the chance to play early. 

“Coach Elston sees me playing in that role as a hybrid defensive end,” explained Mills. “I liked the way they played him because he was doing stunts, rushing the quarterback and making plays in the backfield.” 

Elston was a significant reason the Irish landed the commitment as Mills has built a strong relationship with him over the past few years at camps and multiple visits to Notre Dame. 

 “I like the things he has to say,” Mills said. “I remember back to camp last summer, and I liked the way he coached. He was intense, but he was giving me the right message and leading me down the right path. 

“From a relationship standpoint, he’s done a really good job of letting me know they want me, and they are interested in me. I appreciate they are showing me the love and I’m interested in going forward over the next few years.” 

The commitment from Mills will bring a lot of excitement from the Notre Dame fan base, but his physical potential might be more exciting as the Illinois native is a skinny 265 at this point. 

“Each year I have grown differently,” said Mills. “In eighth grade, I was 160 pounds. Heading into my sophomore year, I ended up being 270 pounds. Every year has been awesome.

“If someone told me all this would happen, I would have told them to get out of town. I’m just having a blast right now.” 

Mills joins a loaded Notre Dame defensive line class of Aidan Keanaaina‍ (DT), Jordan Botelho‍ (DE) and Alexander Ehrensberger‍ (DE). 

The attention now turns to 2020 Port Huron Northern (Mich.) four-star defensive end Braiden McGregor‍, who Mills has become great friends with over the past couple of months.

Mills plans on helping recruit McGregor as he’ll have more free time in the coming months. 

“I’m excited to be able to fully focus on my senior season and playing with my teammates,” said Mills. “I know a couple of guys that would be a good fit. I like to say why I thought it was a good choice for me and just let them know the factors that helped make the decision for me.”

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