CoachSpeak: Versatility the Key With Anzalone

Wyomissing (Pa.) Area High four-star outside linebacker Alex Anzalone announced today he committed to Notre Dame, and his coach gives his thoughts on what the Irish are getting.

As four-star outside linebacker Alex Anzalone's junior season unfolded, Wyomissing (Pa.) Area High coach Bob Wolfrum figured the recruitment of the 6-foot-3, 220-pounder would take off.

He was just expecting it to be on the offensive side of the ball.

"To tell you the truth, I liked his offense," Wolfrum said. "There were a whole bunch of schools that said he could play on either side of the ball for them. Some where one, and some were the other. I think Alex would prefer defense, and I guess that's what he's going to do. I thought he was a heckuva offensive player, too.

"He just has that knack for when to make the cut. He knows when to get up field and when he needs to string it out a little wider. He uses his blocks really well. He also likes to be pretty physical. He'll also try to lower the boom on people when he needs to."

Anzalone announced at The Opening he would be attending Notre Dame. The one-time Ohio State commit chose the Irish over Penn State and Florida.

Anzalone is heading to Notre Dame as an outside linebacker in the Irish's 3-4 scheme. And just because Wolfrum likes Anzalone's offensive talent doesn't mean it will be a struggle on defense. Quite the opposite.

"He reads very well," Wolfrum said. "He just has that knack for the ball. We give him whatever position he happens to be playing for us at the time, and he has his keys, his reads, and he just does that really well. I know one of the things the college coaches like is how quickly he can close on the ball.

"If he's back in pass coverage and reads run, he's back up there quick. And he likes to hit people, so with the speed and his closing ability …that's why I think a lot of the schools liked him at linebacker. He gets there quick and he can cover a lot of ground."

Anzalone also has the athleticism and versatility to excel in the passing game.

"He can (cover) also," Wolfrum said. "We like to keep him as close to the box as we can, but with some of the offensive looks we get, he's more of a defensive back for us at times, and he does that really well."


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