Blue and Gold Illustrated

August 2022

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

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BLUEGOLDONLINE.COM AUGUST 2022 41 BY MIKE SINGER If you would have told class of 2024 wide receiver Cam Williams from Glen Ellyn (Ill.) Glenbard South back in March that he would end up commit- ting to Notre Dame in the June before his junior season, he would have been puzzled by that thought. "I knew it was a cool place, but I wouldn't have believed you," Williams told Blue & Gold Illustrated. But that's what happened June 29 when the four-star prospect announced his pledge to the Fighting Irish, pick- ing head coach Marcus Freeman's squad over Cincinnati, Iowa, Michigan and Wisconsin. The standout pass catcher visited Notre Dame April 2, but didn't hold an offer from the Irish at that point. He also grew up a Wolverines supporter, and he didn't plan on making a commit- ment before his junior year. But after Notre Dame offered him May 5, and he visited campus for the Irish Invasion camp exactly a month later, Williams found his home. "During the April visit I didn't have the offer, and I was a Michigan fan," Williams explained. "But I didn't have the full details about the school either. I didn't think I'd make a commitment to a school this quickly, but things change. I found what I needed. I didn't need to waste any more time. "Not only the environment at Notre Dame and how the school sets you up for life, but also the location was great, and it hits all the right buttons at the right time." Williams, who is listed as the No. 17 wide receiver and No. 136 overall pros- pect nationally by On3, had a great time during his early June visit to South Bend. He spent time with a handful of Irish coaches and caught passes from Notre Dame class of 2024 quarterback pledge CJ Carr during the camp. All in all, it was an eye-opening experience for Williams, according to his high school head coach Ryan Crissey, who joined him on the visit. "He got to experience and feel cam- pus, and there were times on our visit where he said that the place just felt different," Crissey said. "Meeting all of the coaches and those who work in the football office and seeing the facilities checked every box that he'd want in a college experience." Williams informed the Irish staff of his decision to commit about a week after the visit and announced it to the public June 29 on a CBS Sports HQ live stream. "Coach [Tommy] Rees and Coach [Chansi] Stuckey were excited," Wil- liams said. "Then I got to talk to on the phone with Coach [Marcus] Freeman, and he was pretty pumped up. It was a good couple of calls." The 6-2, 175-pounder thinks the world of the Irish staff, which even in- cludes running backs coach Deland Mc- Cullough, who offered him earlier this year while at Indiana. " T h e y ' r e p e o p l e I clicked with from the beginning," Wil- liams said. "I knew right off the bat that Coach Rees is a really cool dude. And spend- ing time with Coach Rees, Coach Stuckey and Coach Freeman to l d m e eve ry t h i n g I needed to know. I knew they were people I wanted to be around for sure." Notre Dame is land- ing a big-time talent at a position of need, but the fact that Williams grew up a Michigan fan and is now switching his allegiance to the Fighting Irish only makes this commit- ment sweeter for his new school's fans. "There's a group of Michigan fans in my family, and I took after them," Wil- liams explained. "I had the idea of not liking Notre Dame. When you're being recruited, you have to put those reasons away. It's not so much about whether you liked them or not prior." Williams had a highly productive sophomore season, helping lead the Raiders to a 9-2 record. He caught 37 passes for 681 yards and 11 touchdowns. He's also a track star, and he reached the 2022 Illinois Class 2A state track meet in the long jump, the high jump, and the 100- and 200-meter races. He earned all-state recognition in the long jump and 200 meters. Williams also received 2021 Illinois High School Football Coaches Associa- tion All-State Academic team honors. ✦ On3 rates Williams — who picked Notre Dame over Cincinnati, Iowa, Michigan and Wisconsin — as a four-star talent, the No. 3 recruit in Illinois, and the No. 17 wide receiver and No. 136 overall player in the country. PHOTO BY CHAD SIMMONS/ON3.COM "He got to experience and feel campus, and there were times on our visit where he said that the place just felt different. Meeting all of the coaches and those who work in the football office and seeing the facilities, checked every box that he'd want in a college experience." GLEN ELLYN (ILL.) GLENBARD SOUTH COACH RYAN CRISSEY ON WILLIAMS' SOUTH BEND VISIT IN EARLY JUNE COMMITMENT PROFILE CAM WILLIAMS Former Michigan Fan Pledges To The Fighting Irish FILM ANALYSIS "He's a very confident, athletic receiver with very good speed. He's got really good size. He can be a go-to guy for Notre Dame. When you watch him on film, he has great body control and balance. "I love his confidence, and at the receiver position that's the No. 2 ingredient behind athletic ability. And he's got it." — Prep Football Report recruiting analyst Tom Lemming

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