Blue and Gold Illustrated

Sept. 17, 2022

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

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44 SEPT. 17, 2022 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED FOOTBALL RECRUITING BY MIKE SINGER N otre Dame facing a Group of Five opponent such as Marshall typically doesn't draw a crowd of big-time prospects. The top re- cruits usually visit Notre Dame for a more marquee showdown. Still, heading into the weekend, sources told Blue & Gold Illustrated about a handful of impressive tar- gets expected to visit Notre Dame Sept. 10. The headliner of the week- end was easily St. Louis Christian Brothers' Jeremiyah Love. Ranked as the No. 5 running back and No. 107 overall recruit in the land by On3, Love is one of most important recruits left on the 2023 board for the Fighting Irish. Notre Dame's 2023 class doesn't have much space left. Irish head coach Marcus Freeman's first full class ranks No. 4 per the 2023 Con- sensus Football Team Recruiting Rankings with its 23 commitments and has potentially as many as four more spots left. Love is one of the pros- pects the staff badly wants to add. In June, Love took official visits to Alabama, Michigan, Notre Dame and Texas A&M, but his mother was not able to make the trip to South Bend. It's good news for the Irish's chances to land Love that she was on campus when Notre Dame had its home opener. The Irish have a pair of running backs committed in Derby (Kan.) High's Dylan Edwards and Lake Stevens (Wash.) High's Jayden Limar. On lists Edwards as a four-star talent and the No. 20 run- ning back in the country, and rates Limar as a three-star prospect and the No. 29 ball carrier nationally. Edwards is viewed as a "scat back" who could play all over the Irish offense and on special teams, though. Love very well could play run- ning back and slot receiver as well. Three Notre Dame verbal commits were expected on campus heading into the weekend. Merrillville (Ind.) Andrean Drayk Bowen, the No. 20 linebacker and No. 234 overall player per On3's 2023 rankings, has already been to Notre Dame 13 times prior to the weekend. Malvern (Pa.) Prep's Peter Jones, who is On3's and No. 19 offensive tackle and No. 260 overall prospect nationally in the 2024 class, committed to Notre Dame Aug. 7 and made his first trip to South Bend since his pledge. St. Louis De Smet's Christian Gray, the No. 10 cornerback and No. 79 overall player in the country per On3, hit the road to South Bend after a high school game Friday night. As a fellow St. Louis native, Gray is well aware of Love and was in his ear Saturday. Bloomfield Hills (Mich.) Brother Rice tight end Henry Garrity, son of for- mer Notre Dame basketball player Pat Garrity, also took in the Irish's home opener. Garrity — who holds offers from Air Force, Navy and Central Michigan — is a preferred walk-on candidate. UNDERCLASSMEN TALENT FLOCKED TO CAMPUS Indiana's top recruit for the 2024 class also was in South Bend for the contest. Fort Wayne North Side's Tae Johnson, who is On3's No. 15 wide receiver and No. 130 overall recruit in the nation, saw Notre Dame for the third time since early June. He could play either safety or wide receiver at the next level, but the Irish likely prefer him at the former position. While Johnson and Jones are the only 2024 prospects who currently hold an offer from Notre Dame and were expected in South Bend dur- ing the weekend, several others could end up receiving a scholar- ship from the staff in the coming weeks or months. Of these prospects, Ponte Vedra Beach (Fla.) High offensive lineman Jake Guarnera is the most high- profile recruit. Ranked as a three- star prospect and the No. 23 inte- rior offensive lineman nationally, Guarnera holds offers from North Carolina State, Florida, Florida State, Michigan and Penn State. Notre Dame has only offered four class of 2024 offensive linemen to this point. Position coach Harry Hies- tand doesn't give out offers like candy on Halloween. But Guarnera may be on the short list of prospects that could receive one. The staff also hosted him for a visit in late July. Merrillville (Ind.) Andrean wide re- ceiver Patrick Clacks — a high school teammate of Irish commit Bowen, who is a three-star recruit and the No. 87 pass catcher in the land per On3 — has visited Notre Dame a few times and was back on campus. He holds offers from Ball State and Pittsburgh. Cincinnati St. Xavier defensive line- man Ted Hammond — a three-star pros- pect and On3's No. 36 defensive lineman nationally, who holds offers from Cin- cinnati, Iowa, Vanderbilt, Northwestern and others — will be on campus. India- napolis Warren Central athlete Jo'Ziah Edmond, Pittsburgh Central Catholic athlete Cole Sullivan and Cincinnati La Salle cornerback Koy Beasley were also Division I prospects expected in, though none are currently rated by On3. ✦ Notre Dame Hosted A Handful Of Talented Prospects For Its Home Opener St. Louis Christian Brothers' Jeremiyah Love, the No. 5 running back and No. 107 overall prospect nationally per On3, was the headliner for the Irish's matchup against Marshall. PHOTO COURTESY ON3.COM

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