ND Defensive Recruiting Big Board: 11.26.13

Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Things are starting to heat up at linebacker. We have good news!

STILL ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR MIDDLE LINEBACKERS AND DEFENSIVE TACKLES

Welcome to the latest installment of the OFD Big Board. Today we're back with another look at the defensive side of the ball and we are tracking any progress the Irish have made since our last update.

Defensive Line
Score Player State Ht/Wt. Temperature 1* 2* 3* 4* 5*
.995 Lorenzo Carter GA 6-5/232 Cold
.937 Matt Elam KY 6-6/350 Mild
.947 Lorenzo Featherston NC 6-7/220 Cold
.788 Kolin Hill TX 6-2/220 Mild
.968 Thomas Holley NY 6-4/285 Mild
.874 Melvin Keihn MD 6-3/225 Cold
.981 Malik McDowell MI 6-7/290 Cold
.948 Derrick Nnadi VA 6-1/305 Cold
.894 Tashon Smallwood CA 6-1/280 Cold
.958 Kentavius Street NC 6-2/262 Cold
.989 Solomon Thomas TX 6-3/256 Cold
.908 Andrew Williams GA 6-4/247 Cold

Since our last update we had (AR) DT Josh Frazier .940 commit to Alabama, (VA) DE Da'Shawn Hand .998 commit to Alabama, and (FL) DT Anthony Moten .924 commit to Miami.

Lorenzo Carter looks to be coming down to Georgia or Alabama with 3 out of his last 5 visits being at Athens. The Gators would like to be involved more but are likely a distant third.

Matt Elam took an official to Notre Dame back in October and will visit Kentucky for an official early in December. The Frazier verbal to the Crimson Tide may help the Irish but most still expect a Kentucky-Alabama battle.

Kolin Hill was offered nearly two weeks ago and projects as an inside linebacker for Notre Dame, or possibly an outside linebacker in the mold of Prince Shembo. The Irish are his top offer by far and he plans on visiting for the team award banquet. A verbal from Hill at that point should not be a surprise.

Notre Dame appeared to have fallen behind with Thomas Holley but the latest update has an official visit to South Bend in the works and the Irish still very much in it.

For all the players who are COLD: Clemson is trending hard for Featherston but he did take an official to Florida State a couple weekends ago. Keihn's last four visits have been to his top schools in Virginia, Maryland, Virginia Tech, and Penn State. McDowell is still expected to pick Michigan but has visited Michigan State and Ohio State this fall. Virginia Tech is trending hard for Derrick Nnadi. Notre Dame has tried to get Smallwood on campus but it hasn't happened yet and he's trending toward Oklahoma. Kentavius Street is a NC State lean but recently scheduled a January official visit to Miami. Notre Dame made Thomas' top 8 but are still looking for an official visit from the Texas defensive lineman. The last two visits for Andrew Williams have been Clemson and Auburn with both of those teams in the driver seat for his services.

Linebacker
Score Player State Ht/Wt. Temperature 1* 2* 3* 4* 5*
.975 Rashaan Evans AL 6-3/220 Cold
.935 Edwin Freeman TX 6-0/212 Cold
.986 Clifton Garrett IL 6-2/228 Cold
.857 Vincent Jackson FL 6-2/235 Cold
.990 Raekwon McMillan GA 6-2/242 Cold
.973 Nyles Morgan IL 6-2/228 Mild
.872 Nile Sykes IL 6-2/223 Mild
.907 Kenny Young LA 6-2/220 Cold

Notre Dame is out of it for all of these players except Nyles and Nile.

Nile Sykes was offered a couple weeks ago and Notre Dame shot to the top of his list so much so that he was rumored to nearly pulled the trigger on a commitment. That verbal may be just a matter of time.

Nyles Morgan has apparently decided Notre Dame might be the place for him as he made his second visit to South Bend in just over a month. Some believe the Irish have now passed Vanderbilt and are neck and neck with Ole Miss. Morgan does have visits to Florida and Vanderbilt scheduled following this season.

Defensive Back
Score Player State Ht/Wt. Temperature 1* 2* 3* 4* 5*
.986 Jamal Adams TX 6-0/199 Cold
.995 Tony Brown TX 6-0/188 Cold
.861 Payton Hendrix TX 6-3/190 Mild
.996 Adoree Jackson CA 5-9/182 Cold
.883 Mattrell McGraw LA 6-0/183 Cold
.987 Jalen Tabor DC 6-1/182 Cold
.943 Parrker Westphal IL 6-0/186 Cold

Same update as last month: Adams, Brown, McGraw, Tabor, and Westphal are not on Notre Dame's radar.

Adoree Jackson has reached long-shot status as the Irish will not be receiving one of his official visits.

This should be a small class in the secondary for Notre Dame and Payton Hendrix appears like the last real target as things stand right now. The Irish are in good position for the Bishop Dunne product but he's planning on taking some official visits and will be in Fayetteville in a couple weeks.

Irish Commits
Score Player State Ht/Wt. Position 1* 2* 3* 4* 5*
.898 Grant Blakenship TX 6-5/235 Defensive End
.931 Andrew Trumbetti NJ 6-5/250 Defensive End
.891 Matt Dickerson CA 6-5/275 Defensive Tackle
.906 Jay Hayes NY 6-5/269 Defensive Tackle
.860 Jonathan Bonner MO 6-4/250 Linebacker
.883 Greer Martini VA 6-3/232 Linebacker
.904 Richard Yeargin FL 6-4/225 Linebacker
.939 Nick Watkins TX 6-1/185 Cornerback
.885 Drue Tranquill IN 6-2/210 Safety
.833 Tyler Newsome GA 6-3/190 Punter

Watkins and Tranquill are the latest verbals to join the 2014 class adding some much needed bodies to the secondary.

Grant Blakenship has moved up enough in the Composite rankings to earn his fourth star.

There was some concern this past weekend as Richard Yeargin visited Clemson. However, he has mentioned that he is still 100% committed to Notre Dame and plans on signing with Irish in February.

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