After losing momentum on the field in November, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish needed to pick up some recruiting momentum as we rush closer and closer to the early signing period on December 20. They did so with two commitments over the past few days in Tariq Bracy and Houston Griffith.
The Irish lost two commits recently as well with Markese Stepp and Geordon Porter, but rather than looking like an implosion, the losses look more like "making room" than what was maybe first perceived. (Which is more a nice way to look at it, rather than the truth).
WHAT DOES THE GRIFFITH COMMITMENT MEAN?
In terms of stopping the bleeding, morale booster, or whatever else you want to use to explain the existentialism of a big-time commitment... it was a really big deal for this recruiting class and for the Notre Dame program.
There are no other ways to say it - HUGE (in those terms).
But what about the actual nuts and bolts of this commitment? What does this 2nd pledge this week mean to this class as we face signing day?
Recently, I wrote about Notre Dame's numbers crunch. Griffith's commitment adds to that crunch, as the Irish now have 87 scholarships for 85 spots.
2018 Notre Dame Football Scholarship Chart
|Quarterback||Phil Jurkovec||Avery Davis*||Ian Book*||Brandon Wimbush*|
|Running Back||Jahmir Smith, C'Bo Flemister||Jafar Armstrong*||Tony Jones Jr.*||Dexter Williams|
|Tight End||George Takacs, Tommy Tremble||Cole Kmet, Brock Wright||Alize' Mack*||Nic Weishar|
|Wide Receiver||Micah Jones, Kevin Austin, Braden Lenzy, Lawrence Keys III||Michael Young||Chase Claypool, Javon McKinley*||Chris Finke*, Miles Boykin*|
|Center||Luke Jones||Sam Mustipher|
|Guard||John Dirksen||Dillan Gibbons*||Tommy Kraemer*||Trevor Ruhland*||Alex Bars|
|Tackle||Cole Mabry, Jarrett Patterson||Josh Lugg*, Robert Hainsey, Aaron Banks*||Liam Eichenberg*|
|Defensive Tackle||Jayson Ademilola, Ja'mion Franklin||Kurt Hinish, Darnell Ewell*, Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa||Micah Dew-Treadway*, Jerry Tillery||Jonathan Bonner|
|Defensive End||Justin Ademilola||Kofi Wardlow*||Ade Ogundeji*, Daelin Hayes, Khalid Kareem, Julian Okwara|
|Linebacker||Matt Bauer, Ovio Oghoufo, Jack Lamb||Drew White*, Jordan Genmark Heath||Jonathan Jones*, Jamir Jones, DJ Morgan||Te'von Coney||Drue Tranquill|
|Rover||Shayne Simon||Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah*, Isaiah Robertson||Asmar Bilal|
|Safety||Derrik Allen, Paul Moala, Houston Griffith||Devin Studstill, Jalen Elliott, Alohi Gilman*||Nicco Fertitta, Nick Coleman|
|Cornerback||Joe Wilkins Jr., Tariq Bracy, D.J. Brown, Noah Boykin||Julian Love, Troy Pride Jr., Donte Vaughn||Shaun Crawford**|
|Specialists||John Doerer||John Shannon*||Justin Yoon||Tyler Newsome|
|27/85 (27)||45/85 (18)||65/85 (20)||79/85 (14)||85/85 (6)|
Basically, the numbers game is still the numbers game. Notre Dame still has their list of targets, and they will pursue them diligently. However... my opinion has changed as to how many more they end up taking. I'm looking at 23.
I believe Griffith's commitment gives them much more stability in their "needs" department at cornerback, but they can still add ONE of either CB Kyler Gordon or CB Noah Boykin.
A commitment from one or the other leaves 3 spots, but perhaps 2 of those three are reserved for WR Amon-Ra St. Brown (probable USC Trojans commit) and OT Nicholas Petit-Frere. So, that leaves only one spot for the following:
- WR Lawrence Keys
- TE Tommy Tremble
- WR Braden Lenzy
- OT Luke Jones
- DE Malik Langham
- LB Solomon Tuliapupu
- S Julius Irvin
Out of all of those names, only the wide receivers of Lenzy and Keys seems like good bets. It's about to get really interesting in about a week.
The class right now has 19 commitments and is ranked 6th in the team rankings by 247 Sports Composite. The class, in terms of hitting on its needs, is already a success, and we wait to see if it gets any better.