Originally written on Subway Domer  |  Last updated 11/6/14


It's been quite a while since we opened up the Recruiting Notebook here at Subway Domer. Things got a little crazy this spring, and Subway Domer decided to just lay back in the cut and let some of this stuff just play out. Can you blame me? After a disastrous signing day, and the Tee Shepard fiasco- I just wanted a break.

I'm glad the Notre Dame coaching staff didn't feel that way- or maybe they did, and were determined as all **** to right the ship. At any rate, the Notre Dame recruiting effort this past spring has been one of the best in the entire country. That was statement was solidified this past week with two phenomenal commitments by Jaylon Smith & Isaac Rochell:

Five-star outside linebacker Jaylon Smith makes the call for #NotreDame on Saturday (free): bit.ly/Laflqv

— Irish Illustrated (@NDatRivals) June 3, 2012

DE Isaac Rochell commits to Notre Dame notredame.247sports.com/Article/DE-Isa… via @247Sports

— Steve Wiltfong (@SWiltfong247) June 7, 2012

What kind of impact will these commitments have, and what might the future hold for the rest of the 2013 Notre Dame recruiting class?

For a decade, Notre Dame has been profusely criticized for both its defensive play and its team speed. No matter the reason, if ND stumbled those two statements were used religiously. In many ways they were absolute truths, but some of it was a little grandiose and the result of lazy journalism.After so long, you could start to see the effect all of that was having on recruiting.

There has been a long list of top rated defensive recruits over the years like ND enough that the Irish would be strung along to NSD and then nothing. These players may have liked ND a lot, but after seeing the Irish defense falter all year, and after listening to the pundits blast ND's defense... They chose a different route. Sure, ND would get a good guy here and there, but it was never in bunches. It never really made solid depth- especially in the front seven.

All of that started to change once Brian Kelly and Bob Diaco started hammering away. The last month and a half for the 2011 NSD was a good example of the complete OPPOSITE of what normally would happen to ND. Tuitt, Lynch, & Ishaq all signed their LOI's with ND. It was a great defensive haul.

However.... As great as that 2011 haul was- it may not be as good as what is happening for the 2013 class. The best players on defense are coming on board RIGHT NOW. Recruits are taking notice, and guys like Jaylon Smith are recruiting more great players to commit to Notre Dame. That gives ND 8 months of blue-chippers trying to get even more blue-chippers.

When Te'o committed to ND on NSD, that was a HUGE moment for the unit and ND as a whole. The only problem was, is that he didn't do it earlier and help get more talent around him. It was slightly different in 2011 when Tuitt, Lynch, and Ishaq played together on the Army AA Team. That kind of helped seal the deal for all three, but it was still quite late for anything else.

Now, we have all seen that kids are going to do what they want to do. They are going to go where they want (unless mom and/or dad play a huge part). So, maybe I'm overstating the point that great players want to play with other great players. Maybe I'm overstating it quite a bit, but then again... maybe I'm not. 

The most important part is that Notre Dame is locking down top defensive talent such as Jaylon Smith & Isaac Rochell, and then the icing on the cake would be that they will help funnel even more talent to the Golden Dome. 

And of course, the hidden nugget of awesomeness: DREADS.
 

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