Fertitta a physical force in the secondary

Notre Dame safety commit Nicco Fertitta of Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman talks about his experience at Irish Invasion, when he plans to visit in the fall, and how his style of play on the field sets him apart from others.

Notre Dame safety commit Nicco Fertitta of Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman has visited Notre Dame four times - twice as a sophomore, once as a junior, and most recently for Irish Invasion in June. "It was really cool to compete with some of the guys that I'm going to be playing with for the next four years," Fertitta said. "It was also really good to give the coaching staff a good first impression. I've known Tristen Hoge for a while, and then I was able to get to know Jerry Tillery a lot better and the newest cornerback commit, Shaun Crawford."

The 5-foot-10, 180-pound athlete has grown increasingly comfortable with Notre Dame with each visit.

"It just feels like home now," Fertitta said. "Especially with the coaching staff and the players that I know on the team. They treat you like family, welcome you with open arms and that's really what I wanted in a school when I was being recruited."

Fertitta, who plans to hit 185 by the start of the season, may be dubbed as undersized, but that doesn't inhibit him from asserting himself as a force to be reckoned with in the secondary.

"I definitely have a physical style of play," Fertitta said. "I take pride in hitting hard. It's a big momentum change when you crack someone and it makes them shy away from you. It gives you the upper hand. I'm smaller, so I have to show that I'm bigger in other ways."

On a squad that includes fire-power like four-star tight end UCLA commit Alize Jones and four-star wide receiver Cordell Broadus, Fertitta will assume a jump in leadership abilities his senior season.

"I really want to be a good leader," Fertitta said. "I was voted captain by my teammates so I don't want to let them down. I also want to take one game at a time and just take the necessary steps to be great."

Fertitta also has his sights on doing some recruiting of his own.

"I talk to Cordell about it, I'm definitely in his ear," Fertitta said. "Hopefully he'll get out there for a visit this season. I talk to the Notre Dame staff a lot, and we talk about recruiting often. I was actually just talking to Coach (Matt) LaFleur yesterday about some things."

Fertitta plans to be back at Notre Dame for the Michigan game, and he plans to take his official visit to Notre Dame for the Stanford game later in the season.

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