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Notre Dame football is taking a different path with its 2020 recruiting class

This is a slightly unusual class that still needs some key additions.

jordan botelho notre dame football
Jordan Botelho
Mike Miller/One Foot Down

It’s been kind of a wild couple of months for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on the recruiting trail. The Irish have netted seven commitments during this time, saw a committed player get his fifth star — but suffered a handful of losses as well.

Through it all, the class is 15 commitments strong and currently has the 5th rated class according to the 247 Team Rankings.

Notre Dame Football’s 2020 Commit List (17)

QB Drew Pyne Connecticut 6'1"` 175 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4/16/18 ✅☘️
TE Kevin Bauman New Jersey 6'5" 232 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 6/13/18 ✅☘️
TE Michael Mayer Kentucky 6'5" 240 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 7/1/18 ✅☘️
DE Alexander Ehrensberger Germany 6'7" 238 ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 1/31/19 ✅☘️
DT Aidan Keanaaina Colorado 6'3" 292 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 2/13/19 ✅☘️
WR Jordan Johnson Missouri 6'2" 180 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4/6/19 ✅☘️
DE/LB Jordan Botelho Hawaii 6'3" 230 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4/18/19 ✅☘️
LS Alex Peitsch Washington D.C. 6'6 220 KOHLS 5⭐️ KOHLS 5⭐️ KOHLS 5⭐️ KOHLS 5⭐️ 4/24/19 ✅☘️
DE Rylie Mills Illinois 6'5" 275 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5/6/19 ✅☘️
OT Tosh Baker Arizona 6'8" 275 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5/8/19 ✅☘️
RB Chris Tyree Virginia 5'9" 178 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5/23/19 ✅☘️
CB Clarence Lewis New Jersey 6'0" 185 ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 6/10/19 ✅☘️
OT Michael Carmody Pennsylvania 6'6" 285 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 6/16/19 ✅☘️
WR Jay Brunelle Massachesetts 6'1" 210 ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 6/26/19 ✅☘️
CB Caleb Offord Mississippi 6'1" 175 ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 7/4/19 ✅☘️
WR Xavier Watts Nebraska 6'1" 185 ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 7/5/19 ✅☘️
CB Ramon Henderson California 6'2" 185 ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 12/18/19 ✅☘️

This should be a much smaller class than what Notre Dame has signed in the past, and the total number of commitments that the Irish will end up with looks to be about 20. So, if my math is accurate enough, that leaves 5 more for this class. Who will it be?

Before we do that, let’s see what position groups Notre Dame still needs to reinforce.

  • QB — Done.
  • RB — Done.
  • TE — Done.
  • WR — 2 more needed.
  • OL — Done.
  • DL — Done.
  • LB — Done with none.
  • CB — 1 more needed.
  • S — 2 more needed.

The Irish lost it’s top two remaining targets at wide receiver this week when Jalen McMillen committed to the Washington Huskies and A.J. Henning committed to the Michigan Wolverines. Those losses were lessened somewhat with a quick turnaround and commitment from Jay Brunelle.

Defensive back is also very much a work in progress as well. The commitments of Clarence Lewis and Landen Bartleson were nice, and we wait patiently for a commitment from Caleb Offord on July 4th (as it is trending). With the likelihood that Lathan Ransom heads elsewhere (probably to the Ohio State Buckeyes) the Irish still have a lot of work to do at safety.

It’s basically a mild reset for Notre Dame with the upcoming dead period for recruiting. If we can pencil in Offord for next week, then we are looking at 4 spots left — 2 safeties and 2 receivers. While safety still feels a bit mysterious, wide receiver looks to be a little clearer. With Xavier Watts “almost committing” last weekend, a future pledge for Notre Dame seems likely. That would then mean, perhaps, a stronger push for William Nixon or an expansion of the board.

Looking back at safety, both Jerrin Thompson and Malcolm Greene are two of the obvious targets the Irish can, and probably will pursue.

As we get closer to the first week of July, Notre Dame is astonishingly close to wrapping up its 2020 class. It’s already a strong class — though it will probably finish outside of the top 10 just based purely on its smaller size. Still, there is a lot of work to be done here, and Notre Dame has to be prepared to reset its board a little bit, and again... possibly expand it.

This is a much different path that the Irish are going down than what we have seen in the past. There are only about 158 offers out there, which is about 30 short of what has become normal in the Brian Kelly era. Can the Irish finish strong with what they are targeting now? They certainly can, but a lot of dominoes still need to fall.

December’s signing day can’t get here soon enough.

2020 Notre Dame Football Scholarship Chart

Position / Year Freshmen Sophomore Junior Senior 5th Year
Position / Year Freshmen Sophomore Junior Senior 5th Year
Quarterback Drew Pyne Brendon Clark* - - Ian Book
Running Back Chris Tyree Kyren Williams* Jahmir Smith*, C'Bo Flemister* Jafar Armstrong*, Avery Davis* -
Tight End Michael Mayer, Kevin Bauman - George Takacs*, Tommy Tremble* Brock Wright -
Wide Receiver Jordan Johnson, Jay Brunelle, Xavier Watts Kendall Abdur-Rahman* Micah Jones*, Kevin Austin*, Braden Lenzy*, Lawrence Keys III*, Joe Wilkins* Javon McKinley, Bennett Skowronek
Center - Zeke Correll* Jarrett Patterson* - -
Guard - Hunter Spears* John Dirksen* Dillan Gibbons*, Aaron Banks* Tommy Kraemer, Colin Grunhard
Tackle Tosh Baker, Michael Carmody Andrew Kristofic*, Quinn Carroll* - Robert Hainsey, Josh Lugg* Liam Eichenberg
Defensive Tackle Aidan Keanaaina, Rylie Mills Howard Cross*, Jacob Lacey Jayson Ademilola, Ja'mion Franklin* Kurt Hinish, Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa -
Defensive End Alexander Ehrensberger, Jordan Botelho NaNa Osafo-Mensah*, Isaiah Foskey* Justin Ademilola*, Ovie Oghoufo* Kofi Wardlow* Ade Ogundeji, Daelin Hayes
Linebacker - Jack Kiser*, Osita Ekwonu*, Marist Liufau*, JD Bertrand* Bo Bauer, Jack Lamb*, Shayne Simon, Paul Moala Drew White*, Jordan Genmark Heath, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah* -
Safety - Litchfield Ajavon*, Kyle Hamilton D.J. Brown*, Houston Griffith Isaiah Pryor* -
Cornerback Clarance Lewis, Caleb Offord, Ramon Henderson K.J. Wallace*, Isaiah Rutherford*, Cam Hart*, TaRiq Bracy - Shaun Crawford**, Nick McCloud
Specialists Alex Peitsch (LS) Jay Bramblett - Jonathan Doerer -
Totals 17/85 (17) 38/85 (21) 60/85 (22) 75/85 (15) 85/85 (10)
*Eligible For 5th Year **Eligible For 6th Year