Blue and Gold Illustrated

Nov. 9, 2015 Issue

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

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BY ANDREW IVINS It technically won't go down in the books as a "flip" for Notre Dame, but everything that the Irish did to land a commitment from Farmington Hills (Mich.) Harrison four-star defensive end Khalid Kareem could be classified as just that. Kareem, who gave a verbal pledge to Alabama June 24, had always been a top target for the Irish along the de- fensive line — and that's why Notre Dame never stopped recruiting him even though he was high on the SEC school. After Kareem took his official visit to Alabama in late September, Notre Dame defensive line coach Keith Gilmore began to put on the press. He told Kareem that Notre Dame was the place for him, and that the combina- tion of academics and athletics was too much to turn down. It was a pitch that eventually worked. Kareem decommitted from Ala- bama Oct. 14. Three days later he was in South Bend with his family for the USC game and an official visit. "It exceeded expectations," Kareem said looking back. "It was great, it re- ally was." The visit was what also made the decision for him to commit to Notre Dame simple. "We really liked it," Khalid's father, Ken Kareem, told Rivals. "It was one of those things where we wanted to just see it again. I can't say anything really stood out because we liked it the first time we went. They were always impressive to us." Gilmore, who first started court- ing Kareem when he was coaching Irish Flip Top Defensive End Away From Alabama COMMITMENT PROFILE KHALID KAREEM Kareem — the nation's No. 19 strongside defensive end according to Rivals — decommitted from the Crimson Tide Oct. 14, made an official visit to South Bend Oct. 17 and then pledged to the Irish Oct. 23. PHOTO BY ANDREW IVINS

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