Blue and Gold Illustrated

March 2022

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

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 75 of 99

76 MARCH 2022 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED FOOTBALL RECRUITING BY ASHTON POLLARD & MIKE SINGER B lue & Gold Illustrated moved from Rivals to the On3 Sports network on Jan. 1, 2022, meaning our iconic pub- lication now has access to the best re- cruiting database in the industry. On3 has its own traditional recruiting rankings, but it also has introduced the On3 Consensus rankings, which equally weighs all four major recruiting outlets (ESPN, On3, 247 and Rivals). After a strong showing at the Under Armour All-America Game and its week of practices, Hilton Head (S.C.) line- backer Jaylen Sneed was bumped up to five-star status and the No. 26 overall player nationally per On3's own rank- ings. He is just one spot away from a five-star ranking at No. 33 in the On3 Consensus. Regardless, Notre Dame is get- ting a fantastic player in the 6-1, 198-pounder. Irish head coach Marcus Freeman is reminded of another great linebacker from recent school history when he watches Sneed on film. "The genetic makeup that he has is different; it's special," Freeman told Blue & Gold Illustrated in a phone in- terview. "He has some explosiveness that I haven't seen in a long time. " I wa s n 't h e re wh e n Je re m i a h Owusu-Koramoah played at Notre Dame, but from everything I hear from our guys, the things Jaylen does are similar to what 'Wu' did. To me, that's a great compliment." Yellow Springs (Ohio) Wayne of- fensive tackle and Notre Dame signee Aamil Wagner also earned five-star sta- tus in On3's rankings and is listed as the No. 29 overall player in America. He checked in at No. 78 overall in the On3 Consensus. Freeman's familiarity with Wagner stems from the fact that he and Wagner both went to Wayne High School. "Earned, not given," Freeman said about Wagner's five-star ranking. "I know a little bit more about him be- cause of my relationship with that high school. He's a tireless worker. … He's playing basketball and training in his other sports. "All he's going to need is one offsea- son. He has things that you can't teach, and that's the athleticism, which runs in his family. … There's no doubt in my mind that he'll be able to put the weight on that it takes to play at this level." NEW NOTRE DAME COACHES HIT THE ROAD IN JANUARY Notre Dame announced the addi- tion of Brian Mason (special teams), Harry Hiestand (offensive line), Chansi Stuckey (wide receivers) and Al Wash- ington (defensive line) in that chrono- logical order in January. The other new Irish hires had not been made official yet. There was no time for the coaches to celebrate their new positions. It was in the middle of a two-week period during which college coaches were able to hit the road to stop in at high schools, and the Irish staff got after it. Notre Dame looked at adding an extra class of 2022 running back and/or wide receiver for the February signing day but opted to stand pat. During their January road travels, the staff also checked in at high schools of top 2023 targets and inquired about various 2024 prospects. One of Hiestand's stops was to see Rock Island (Ill.) Alleman, home of class of 2023 four-star Charles Jagusah, the No. 6 offensive tackle and No. 78 overall player nationally. Mason did a lot of area recruiting; rather than making a trip to see a spe- cific prospect, he visited a handful of recruits in a given city. Mason spent a lot of time in Indiana and Ohio. Washington went with Freeman to check in on Washington (D.C.) Arch- bishop Carroll, the school that class of 2023 five-star athlete Nyckoles Harbor attends. Among Stuckey's stops was a trip to see Gilbert (Ariz.) Williams Field stand- out Kyler Kasper, the No. 22 wide re- ceiver and No. 143 overall prospect in the 2023 class. Notebook: Notre Dame's Jaylen Sneed, Aamil Wagner Receive High Praise Wagner received a five-star ranking from On3 — something Irish head coach Marcus Freeman said was "earned, not given" — and was listed as the No. 29 overall player in the country. PHOTO BY CHAD WEAVER

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Blue and Gold Illustrated - March 2022