The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have a roster full of players, and we want to talk about them all. One Foot Down’s player profile series will take a look at every single one of them, and hopefully we all learn a little bit more about these guys, and Notre Dame’s chances for the upcoming 2020 season.
#23 Litchfield Ajavon, Safety
Litchfield Ajavon committed to the Irish on April 21, 2018. He selected Notre Dame over offers from Clemson, Georgia, Michigan, and Michigan State, among others. The only official visit he took was to Notre Dame. Ajavon was rated as a 4 star prospect by 247Sports Composite rankings. 247Sports ranked him as the 6th best player in Virginia and the 19th best safety prospect in the class of 2019. He attended Episcopal High School and lives in Alexandria, Virginia. During his senior season of high school, Ajavon recorded 62 tackles, 2 tackles for a loss, 1 interception, and 1 fumble recovery. Coming into college, the main knock recruiting analysts had against him was his coverage ability. Several analysts felt he lacked fluidity and struggled to changed direction at an elite level. He currently stands 6’ 0’’ and weighs 192 lbs.
Interestingly, Ajavon immigrated to the United States from Ghana when he was 6 years old. Ajavon’s grandfather was a former village leader in Libya who was forced to flee to Ghana after civil war erupted in Libya. The family had been living in exile in a refugee camp for 20 years before deciding to immigrate to the United States. After initially settling in Baltimore, Ajavon and his family relocated to Alexandria.
Ajavon saw limited snaps twice during the 2019 campaign, playing against Bowling Green and Duke. He did not record a statistic in either game. As a result of playing in less than four games, he was able to preserve his redshirt season.
Badgers may not be the biggest animal in the world and definitely are not overly athletic. However, what they lack in size and athleticism, they certainly make up for in aggressiveness and tenacity. Similarly, Ajavon may not be the biggest safety around. However, he packs an enormous punch and is not afraid to patrol the middle of the field against bigger players.
As it stands currently, Ajavon will struggle to garner many meaningful reps on defense. Based off of one spring practice, he was running behind Houston Griffth and Isaiah Pryor at the stud safety position (strong safety). Though he doesn’t possess top end speed, Ajavon’s physicality could land him a role as a gunner on the punt team, as well as a prominent role on other special team units.