Elite Pennsylvania linebacker David Adams became the 6th commitment in the 2017 Notre Dame football class today when he announced for the Irish - and the second to pledge on the big junior day weekend, joining QB Avery Davis. Adams is listed at 6'2" and 230 pounds. The 247 Composite has him as the #105 prospect overall, #4 inside linebacker, and #4 player in Pennsylvania. He's the second-highest ranked player in Notre Dame's class right now, behind #46 overall TE Brock Wright.
Adams trekked to South Bend for the third time this weekend, after visiting last summer and for the USC game in the fall. The Irish made a big impression on his first visit and apparently never stopped building momentum, as despite a perceived Irish lead the timing of this commitment was a bit of a surprise. Penn State and Pitt were expected to be major players for the yinzer, and expect them to still push, but apparently the pull of Notre Dame finally grew too strong for David to ignore.
Recruiting Service Rankings
Rivals - 4 star (5.9 rating), #100 overall, #4 position, #5 in Pennsylvania
247 - 4 star (93 rating), #149 overall, #4 position, #4 in Pennsylvania
ESPN - 4 star (81 rating), #143 overall, #5 position, #4 in Pennsylvania
Scout - 4 star, #101 overall, #6 position, #3 in Pennsylvania
247 Composite - 4 star (0.9509 rating), #105 overall, #4 position, #4 in Pennsylvania
This might be the tightest range of rankings for a guy outside, say, the composite top 15 that I can remember. Almost like one service set a ranking and the other three looked at that guy's paper.
In addition to Notre Dame, Adams holds offers from Baylor, Boston College, Duke, Florida, Louisville, LSU, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Mississippi State, Nebraska, North Carolina, Ole Miss, Penn State, Pitt, Stanford, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, and Wisconsin, among others.
There's a lot to like here. He shows great athleticism and decision making - he analyzes runs quickly, and when he pulls the trigger he gets there fast. I like his closing speed, the angles he takes, and the way he hits when he gets there. We'll see how this translates to the next level, when everyone is bigger, but he does a good job shedding blocks from offensive linemen also. His film actually reminds me a lot of Te'Von Coney's high school highlights - active, decisive, quick, and fierce.
One thing I'm left to wonder about is coverage ability - there is one play on here where he roams the middle and savagely separates a receiver from the ball, but almost everything he defends is a run play. Very few middle linebackers come in as freshmen ready to cover anyway, so it's not a big deal, but he could be pretty raw in that area. Fortunately he should have a little time to sit and learn.
With Coney, Nyles Morgan, and Greer Martini ahead of him, it's pretty hard to imagine Adams getting immediate playing time right away. He'll most likely have a year to lift and study, which he'll need to do to prepare for 2018.
Long Term / Career
Speaking of which - he'll be behind Morgan and Martini in 2017, but in 2018 they'll be gone and Coney will be a senior. So Adams better have had a really productive redshirt year... The bet here is that he will, and in 2018 he'll be fully ready to step into the rotation. He's a high-character kid with a good head for the game and plus athleticism - there's every reason to believe he has a bright future ahead of him. I'd expect him to end up a multi-year starter, stepping in after Coney is done.
Welcome to the family, David!