4-star Shumate Talks Irish; Visit Possible?

Scout.com's No. 7-rated safety in the 2012 class is Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.) standout Elijah Shumate, and he spoke to IrishEyes.com about his summer visit plans, whether Notre Dame factors into them, and what he knows about the program. He also spoke about his relationship with the Notre Dame.

Elijah Shumate grew up watching Notre Dame on television, so when the Irish offered the 6-foot-1, 205-pound Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.) safety, he had immediate flashbacks.

Now, he's looking ahead.

Shumate, who holds dozens of offers, is beginning to plan out his summer visit schedule so he can narrow is list heading into his senior season.

"South Carolina, North Carolina, and Notre Dame," Shumate said of schools he is planning to visit.

A date hasn't been set up, but the Irish are a program Shumate had his eye on before transferring from Paterson (N.J.) Catholic High, which was shut down, to Don Bosco after his sophomore season.

However, Notre Dame holds a special place because of its history.

"I know that they have a rich tradition," he said. "It doesn't get any better than Notre Dame. It's one of the top traditions in the country. You play for Notre Dame, that's like playing for the Dallas Cowboys."

Shumate's early exposure to the Irish came from television.

"I grew up watching Notre Dame on t.v. and seeing their rich tradition," he said. "I just want to see what they're about it."

Shumate lists South Carolina, Rutgers and Connecticut as his leaders, but with the caveat being those are the schools he already visited, so he knows the most about them.

But did playing for Notre Dame enter Shumate's mind while he watched the games?

"I actually thought about it over the last few years because that would be a great situation for me, and it would put me in a great position to make it to the next level," he said. "I talked to a few of the coaches, like (defensive coordinator Bob) Diaco. He's a great person. He shows that he really wants me and he really likes me and I'm definitely a key target, and that's what I want."

However, even with all the offers and attention, Shumate isn't ready to sit back and relax while hitting the recruiting circuit. Before training camp arrives, he plans on improving several aspects of his game.

"I need to work on footwork, technique, and get better at that," he said. "I need to get better at staying low."

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