We are only a few weeks away from National Signing Day, and the recruiting world is on fire. The Notre Dame Fighting Irish are in the middle of this world right now - trying to not get burned before February 7.
The recruiting cycle has already seen the Early Signing Period come and go in December, and then two major All-American games. We have arrived at the final major all-star game, and inch closer to the end of this cycle.
THE POLYNESIAN BOWL
WHERE: Aloha Stadium, O`ahu, Hawai`i
WHEN: Saturday January 20th @ 6:00PM local / 11:00PM EST
HOW TO WATCH: ESPN 3
NOTRE DAME COMMITS: 4 Star Defensive Tackle Jayson Ademilola, 3 Star Safety Paul Moala, 4 Star Wide Receiver Braden Lenzy
NOTRE DAME TARGETS: 4 Star Linebacker Solomon Tuliaupupu
This game could probably use some better promotion. While the Under Armour Game and the Army All-American game are televised, the only outlet for the Polynesian Bowl is to stream it from ESPN on their website. It's odd, really, if you look at the apparel sponsors. Under Armour is obvious, and the Army game is sponsored by Adidas, but the apparel sponsor for this game is none other than the leading apparel provider for the NCAA and the provider for the NFL... Nike.
Despite the smaller amount of coverage, there is going to be a ton of talent in this game. For the Irish, three of their current 2018 signees will be on hand in Braden Lenzy, Paul Moala, and Jayson Ademilola. In Lenzy and Ademilola, they represent two of the best prospects that Notre Dame got in this class. Ademilola is also one of a handful of prospects in this game that played in one of the other two All-American games.
The biggest name for Irish fans to know that is uncommitted, is 4 star linebacker Solomon Tuliaupupu. Solo has Notre Dame in his top 3 with the UCLA Bruins and USC Trojans. He is the high school Butkus Award Winner, and highly prized by the Irish staff. He isn't expected to make a decision until National Signing Day.
Here are some other names on the Polynesian Bowl roster that won't be Irish, but you are either familiar with - or should be:
- OT Emil Ekyior (Alabama Crimson Tide)
- LB Palaie Gaoteote (USC Trojans)
- S Talnoa Hufanga (USC Trojans)
- RB Markese Stepp (USC Trojans)
- CB Kyler Gordon (Washington Huskies)
I know it's on Saturday, and it's on fairly late for eastern standard time people, but if you get a chance, go ahead and watch this game and see some great talent and also the best uniforms of all the All-American games.