2019 Notre Dame Football Preview

Digital Edition

Blue & Gold Illustrated: 2019 Notre Dame Football Preview

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Page 155 of 163

154 ✦ BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED 2019 FOOTBALL PREVIEW BY MIKE SINGER N otre Dame hasn't signed a recruiting class that wasn't ranked in the top 15 nationally since 2012 — when the Irish only took 17 recruits in the cycle — and is on its way to meeting that standard again. As of early June, the Irish had 12 commit- ments for 2020, and the group was ranked No. 6 in the nation by Rivals. Eight of Notre Dame's 11 position players were ranked inside the Rivals250. The class will number 20-23 prospects, which is a fairly typical number for the Fight- ing Irish. Quarterback Committed: 1 Projected Take: 1 Synopsis: Notre Dame identified its desired quarterback early, with New Canaan (Conn.) High School star Drew Pyne being the only signal-caller to earn an offer in the class. Pyne was the first 2020 pledge, picking the Irish on April 16, 2018. The 6-1, 175-pounder chose Notre Dame over other tenders from Alabama, Florida State, LSU, Michigan, Oklahoma and many others. Pyne is still very firm with his pledge to Notre Dame and has been working hard to help the Irish staff recruit other top 2020 recruits. Rivals ranks Pyne as the No. 5 pro-style quar- terback and No. 82 prospect nationally. Running Back Committed: 1 Projected Take: 1 Synopsis: Notre Dame had several elite running backs on the board and was consid- ering taking two at the position in the cycle. However, once the Irish got a silent verbal commitment from Chester (Va.) Thomas Dale standout Chris Tyree, the Notre Dame coach- ing staff shut down running back recruiting. The elite speedster told the coaches in early May that he would be joining the class and announced his commitment publicly May 23. Notre Dame offensive coordinator Chip Long deserves a lot of credit for the work he put into Tyree's recruitment, and new running backs coach Lance Taylor played an important role too. Unless Notre Dame can land a player the caliber of Tyree, it is unlikely to add a second pure back to the class. Wide Receiver Committed: 1 Projected Take: 3-4 Synopsis: Notre Dame landed its top wide receiver target when St. Louis De Smet star Jordan Johnson gave a verbal to the Irish in early April. Johnson earned five-star status STARTING FAST An early position-by-position evaluation of Notre Dame's recruiting efforts for 2020 Notre Dame landed one of its top overall targets when Chester (Va.) Thomas Dale standout Chris Tyree — the nation's No. 1 all-purpose back and No. 64 overall player per Rivals — committed in May. PHOTO COURTESY RIVALS.COM

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