Blue and Gold Illustrated

Preseason 2018

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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64 PRESEASON 2018 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED FOOTBALL RECRUITING BY COREY BODDEN AND DAVID MCKINNEY N otre Dame's marquee season- opening matchup against Michi- gan will not only be an important weekend for the current Irish football team, but could also end up going a long way in terms of recruiting fu- ture members of the Fighting Irish. Here's a rundown of the uncom- mitted and committed prospects in the classes of 2019 and 2020 that are expected to visit. 2019 PROSPECTS EXPECTED TO ATTEND KENDALL ABDUR-RAHMAN — OFFICIAL VISIT Wide Receiver • Edwardsville (Ill.) High Rivals Rankings: Three-star pros- pect. The Skinny: Notre Dame offered the 6-0, 175-pound receiver in Feb- ruary and has remained in contact ever since. Abdur-Rahman made it to South Bend this spring and will take his official visit to open the year, per The St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The senior has not gone in depth about his thoughts on the Irish, but he does hold the program in high regard. Illinois, Iowa, Northwestern, Minnesota, Michigan State and Ne- braska, among others, have also of- fered. ISAIAH RUTHERFORD — OFFICIAL VISIT Cornerback • Carmichael (Calif.) Jesuit Rivals Rankings: Four-star talent, and the No. 9 cornerback and No. 83 overall player nationally. The Skinny: After originally leav- ing Notre Dame out of his top four this summer, Rutherford is set to take his first visit to check out the Irish program up close. He had narrowed his recruitment down to Cal, LSU, Oklahoma and Oregon, but the Irish continued their pursuit of him and convinced the Rivals100 prospect to make the trip to South Bend. He will also visit Colorado (Sept. 15) during the first month of the col- lege season. Notre Dame will need to hit a home run during the trip to have a chance to pull in Rutherford. BRALEN TRICE — OFFICIAL VISIT Defensive End • Phoenix O'Connor Rivals Rankings: Four-star talent and the No. 23 weakside defensive end in the country. The Skinny: Like Abdur-Rahman, Trice doesn't say much publicly, but his thoughts on Notre Dame are clear. Despite not having vis- ited South Bend yet, Trice released a top group in late May that included the Irish, TCU, Oregon, UCLA and Washington. It will be Trice's first Notre Dame experience, and the Irish staff will aim to make a strong impression while attempting to add at least one more defensive end to their class. ENOKK VIMAHI — OFFICIAL VISIT Offensive Lineman • Kahuku (Hawai'i) High Rivals Rankings: Four-star talent, and the No. 17 offensive tackle and No. 132 overall player in the nation. The Skinny: Vimahi is a player the Irish have continued to recruit and push for throughout the year. Though it wasn't locked in 100 per- cent as of Aug. 16, the Vimahi family was working on the final details to visit South Bend to open the year. The Irish sit in the final eight for the Rivals250 prospect, along with Nebraska, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, UCLA, USC, Washington and Vir- ginia. Notre Dame has four talented offensive linemen already in the fold, and would like to add a player of Vimahi's caliber to the group. 2020 PROSPECTS EXPECTED TO ATTEND AJ HENNING — UNOFFICIAL VISIT Running Back • Frankfort (Ill.) Lincoln-Way East Rivals Rankings: Four-star talent, and the No. 3 all-purpose running back and No. 72 overall player na- tionally. The Skinny: Henning has been to South Bend frequently, with two spring visits and a summer one al- ready under his belt in 2018. The Irish have been a strong contender since offering this spring and appear to be in a two-team race with Ohio State. He is hoping to visit more schools outside of the Midwest this next spring and summer, so it could be a while before a decision is made. However, the Irish figure to be in the hunt for the long haul. The Michigan Game Will Bring A Host Of Recruits To South Bend Rivals rates Kahuku (Hawai'i) High standout Enokk Vimahi, who is expected to take an official visit to Notre Dame Sept. 1, as the No. 17 offensive tackle and No. 132 overall prospect in the class of 2019. PHOTO COURTESY RIVALS.COM

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