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Notre Dame Football Recruiting: 4-Star WR Braylon James commits to the Irish

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The Irish get a big-time player from the Lone Star State

Braylon James from Texas commits to Notre Dame Football.
Braylon James

Braylon James, a 4-Star wide receiver from Texas, gave his verbal commitment to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on Tuesday night during a short announcement ceremony. The 6’3” 185 pounder from Del Valle High School just outside of Austin, chose the Irish over a heavy offer list that included the Georgia Bulldogs, Texas Longhorns, LSU Tigers, Texas A&M Aggies, and many others.

Braylon trolled Brian Kelly and LSU for a second…

James is a consensus 4-Star player and top 15 WR in the country.

247 evaluation from Gabe Brooks:

Big-framed outside receiver with clear physical tools and athleticism. Approaching legit 6-foot-2 with big reach and corresponding catch radius.

Assembled one of the best verified testing ledgers in the country in Spring 2022, confirming top-end speed and initial explosiveness. That highest gear can perhaps show up a bit more often on the field, but the materials certainly exist to manifest that.

Multi-sport experience with previous basketball participation, while also competing in track and field (hurdles, high jump, relays). General functional athleticism checks out on tape and in live elite camp exposure.

Displays advanced feel for winning in traffic and adjusting mid-air. Good sense of timing and elevates with large reach to expand catch radius. Matchup nightmare for smaller defensive backs. Dangerous red-zone option given physical traits and contested throw success.

Also returned kicks in 2021. Linear juice provides big-play ability in that capacity, which could give a school that option in college.

Appears to be more linear-oriented athletically, but testing data suggests fluidity is there. Generally a hands catcher but ball gets into him on occasion. Needs a runway at times to hit top gear, but the data as a whole suppresses much of that concern.

Production has been solid, but not dominant, relative to many other national-level wideouts. Honing route-running nuance should raise long-term developmental ceiling even higher.

One of the most physically gifted receivers in this class with national top 100 potential. Possesses physical resources to become a legitimate high-major impact player with traits that correspond to future NFL Draft candidacy.

James is the first WR in the 2023 class for the Irish and the second player from Texas. Notre Dame’s 2023 class went into the day as the #3 school in the 247 Composite Team Rankings behind the Texas Tech Red Raiders and the Ohio State Buckeyes. With the commitment of James, Notre Dame vaults back into the #1 spot after dropping a few days ago with the Justyn Rhett decommitment.

2023 Notre Dame Football Commit List (12)

DE Keon Keeley FL 6'5" 230 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 06/28/21
DE Brenan Vernon OH 6'5" 245 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 06/29/21
S Adon Shuler NJ 6'0" 190 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 08/15/21
TE Cooper Flanagan CA 6'5" 225 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 09/02/21
LB Drayk Bowen IN 6'2" 215 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 11/03/21
S Peyton Bowen TX 6'0" 185 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 01/01/22
LB Preston Zinter MA 6'2" 220 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 01/11/22
WR Braylon James TX 6'3" 185 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 04/19/22
OL Sam Pendleton NC 6'4" 295 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 04/25/22
DL Boubacar Traore MA 6'5" 240 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 04/27/22
DL Devan Houstan MD 6'5" 270 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 05/07/22
OL Sullivan Absher NC 6'7" 290 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 05/13/22

This is a recruiting class for Notre Dame that is not only desperate in numbers needed at wide receiver, but also in blue-chip talent needed. While the quarterback recruiting has gobbled up most of the Notre Dame headlines over the past couple of months, freakish athletes catching the ball are just as needed in South Bend. Even with the transfer portal still in play for the 2022 cycle that could affect 2023 eligibility, Notre Dame could still use about 4 WRs in this class.

2023 Notre Dame Football Scholarship Chart

Position / Year Freshmen Sophomore Junior Senior 5th/6th Year
Position / Year Freshmen Sophomore Junior Senior 5th/6th Year
Quarterback - Steve Angeli Tyler Buchner, Ron Powlus Drew Pyne -
Running Back - Jadarian Price, Gi'Bran Payne Audric Estime, Logan Diggs Chris Tyree -
Tight End Cooper Flanagan Eli Raridon, Holden Staes Cane Berrong, Mitchell Evans Michael Mayer, Kevin Bauman -
Wide Receiver Braylon James Tobias Merriweather Deion Colzie, Lorenzo Styles, Jayden Thomas - -
Center - Ashton Craig Pat Coogan - Zeke Correll
Guard Sam Pendleton Billy Schrauth Rocco Spindler - Andrew Kristofic
Tackle Sullivan Absher Joey Tanona, Ty Chan, Aamil Wagner Blake Fisher, Joe Alt, Caleb Johnson Michael Carmody, Tosh Baker -
Defensive Tackle Boubacar Traore, Devan Houstan Tyson Ford, Donovan Hinish Gabe Rubio Rylie Mills, Aidan Keanaaina Howard Cross, NaNa Osafo Mensah
Defensive End Keon Keeley, Brenan Vernon Joshua Burnham, Aiden Gobaira Jason Onye, Will Schweitzer Alexander Ehrensberger Isaiah Foskey, Osita Ekwonu
Linebacker Drayk Bowen, Preston Zinter Nolan Ziegler, Junior Tuihalamaka, Jaylen Sneed Prince Kollie Jordan Botelho Jack Kiser, Marist Liufau, JD Bertrand
Safety Adon Shuler, Peyton Bowen Jayden Bellamy Justin Walters Xavier Watts, Ramon Henderson -
Cornerback - Jayden Mickey, Benjamin Morrison Ryan Barnes, Philip Riley, Chance Tucker Clarence Lewis Cam Hart
Specialists - Bryce McFerson (P) Josh Bryan (K) Alex Peitsch (LS) -
Totals 12/85 (12) 34/85 (22) 57/85 (23) 71/85 (14) 81/85 (10)
5th year eligibility moving forward is not represented on this chart due to COVID year. May be subject to change.

This is a fantastic pick-up for the Irish and quite possibly one of the most important recruits in the entire cycle. The recruiting losses of C.J. Williams and Amorion Walker late in the 2022 cycle have already impacted the 2022 season with low numbers this spring. Filling up the talent pool with elite pass-catchers like James is exactly what this class and program need right now.