Blue and Gold Illustrated

February 2020

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

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Page 34 of 47 FEBRUARY 2020 35 FOOTBALL RECRUITING Rivals ranks Bauman as the No. 5 tight end and No. 130 overall player in the land. 7. RYLIE MILLS DE • 6-4½, 250 Lake Bluff, Ill. • Lake Forest H.S. Mills — the country's No. 9 strong- side defensive end and No. 161 overall player p e r R i v a l s — w a s named the 2019 Pioneer Press All-Area Football Defensive Player of the Year. He missed a few games in 2019 due to injury, but he had a strong season, recording 32 tackles, 13 tackles for loss, four sacks and seven quarter- back hurries. Mills made a bigger impact than the numbers indicate, though, as the forceful defensive lineman consistently ate up double teams and freed up his teammates to make stops in the backfield. He has the versatility to play end or tackle for the Fighting Irish and is a key recruit for Notre Dame in the 2020 class. 8. JORDAN BOTELHO DE • 6-2, 229 Honolulu • St. Louis H.S. Rivals ranks Botelho as the No. 12 inside linebacker nationally and No. 198 overall pros- pect in the land, but the Irish prefer him to play on the defensive line at the "vyper" position, formerly known as the "drop end." Botelho was a four-time state cham- pion at Honolulu St. Louis and had an extremely productive high school career as a linebacker, leading to be- ing picked to play in the All-American Bowl. He will enroll early at Notre Dame and has the chance to break into the rotation as a true freshman. 9. MICHAEL CARMODY OL • 6-6, 292 Mars, Pa. • Mars Area H.S. Carmody, the younger brother of Notre Dame basketball guard Robby Carmody, is not just a powerful offensive lineman. He's an athletic big man on the hardwood and was named to the Pennsyl- vania Interscholastic Athletic Asso- ciation Class 5A All-State basketball second team in 2018. With Carmody's strength and mo- bility, he can be a great guard for the Fighting Irish, but he offers the skills to play tackle as well. Rivals lists him as just a four-star prospect and the No. 35 offensive tackle nationally, but the 6-6, 292-pounder will play in both the All-American Bowl and the Polynesian Bowl. 10. AIDAN KEANAAINA DT • 6-2¾, 302 Englewood, Colo. • J.K. Mullen H.S. Keanaaina's recruitment came down to Florida, Notre Dame and Ohio State, and the Polynesian Bowl se- lection sided with the Irish, giving Brian Kel- ly's program a big-time nose tackle. He is a force on the interior and consistently stuffs run plays. During his team's six-game losing streak this past fall, he still was dominant individually. As a na- tionally unranked four-star prospect, Keanaaina also is very underrated. He is listed by Rivals as the No. 30 defensive tackle in the land and has over a 4.0 grade-point average. 11. XAVIER WATTS WR • 5-11, 185 Omaha, Neb. • Harry A. Burke H.S. Watts can be summed up in one word: productive. Whether he's split- ting out at receiver or playing defensive back, he has put up huge numbers during his decorated high school career and helped lead Burke to a Class A Ne- braska state championship in 2018. He totaled 163 career receptions for 2,978 yards, while adding 136 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss, nine interceptions (one returned for TD), 13 passes bro- ken up and 40 career touchdowns. He is Burke's career leader in receiving yards and receiving touchdowns and has also performed at a high level on the track, winning the all-class gold medal at the 2019 Nebraska state track meet in the 4x100 with a time of 42.41. The nation's No. 89 wide receiver according to Rivals will enroll early and has the ability to be a big-time playmaker on either side of the ball. 12. LANDEN BARTLESON CB • 5-11½, 181 Harrodsburg, Ky. • Boyle County H.S. Bartleson needs work, but with his speed and athleti- cism, the ceiling for this young man is very high. T h e re ' s n o t m u c h disputing that Notre Dame struck out with many of its top defen- sive back targets in the 2020 class, but that isn't the case with Bartleson. The staff offered him during the fall of 2018 and worked on him through- out the spring. He officially visited Notre Dame in June, and he picked the Fighting Irish over the likes of Kentucky, Louisville, Michigan, Ohio State and others. Rivals' No. 39 cornerback in the country was a four-year starter and helped lead Boyle County to a 3A Kentucky state title in 2017. 13. CALEB OFFORD CB • 6-1, 170 Southaven, Miss. • Southaven H.S. Offord is the first recruit from the state of Mississippi to sign with Notre Dame during the Brian Kelly era, although his town is just about 10 minutes south of the Tennessee border. His best traits are his length and speed. His long arms help him at multiple positions in the secondary, and college coaches have gushed about how well he runs. Offord, who is rated as a three-star recruit and the No. 43 cornerback in the nation by Rivals, has the versatil- ity to play safety for Notre Dame. He also held offers from Arkansas, Memphis and Oklahoma, among many others. 14. CLARENCE LEWIS CB • 6-0, 180 Edison, N.J. • Mater Dei H.S. Lewis, the No. 82 cor- nerback in the country per Rivals, has the abil- ity to be a real sleeper in Notre Dame's 2020 class. He has shown to be a great athlete

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