IE Quick Take: James Onwualu

Saint Paul (MN) wide receiver James Onwualu had seen enough and moved up his timeline by a few hours in giving Notre Dame his pledge.'s Dave Berk offers his first take on the future Notre Dame receiver.

Brian Kelly placed all things aside and made sure he was on hand to give new Notre Dame pledge James Onwualu his full attention.

At 6-foot-1, 185-pounds, Onwualu could fill several needs for the Irish. However, he fully expects to use his talents on the offensive side of the football.


Onwualu's work as a running back will serve him well at the college level. Shows a tough, hardnosed style of play willing to lower his shoulder or run between the tackles. Future will be as a receiver as he shows solid hands and the ability to use quick elusive cuts to make big plays after the catch. Add in his ability to go up and catch the ball at its highest point makes him a threat in the red zone.


The first thing many will want to do is apply pressure to the Cretin Derham Hall product with comparisons to former Irish standout Michael Floyd. While they may end up sharing the same positions during their college careers, Onwualu brings a different skill set to the field. Despite the early pledge, there will also be outside pressure working to pull him away from the Irish.


This is a great pledge for Kelly and his Irish staff to earn early as many rivals of the Irish looked to pull him away. On the field the Irish will be able to move Onwualu around the offense as a receiver or even place him in the backfield to come out and catch passes. Good physical size with room to pack on some weight and muscle are a given as he matures. While rated as a three-star prospect, keep in mind he was being looked at as a running back and not a receiver.

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