IE Quick Take: Jamel James

Katy (TX) product Jamel James became the latest pledge in Brian Kelly's class of 2013.'s Dave Berk offers his first take on the future Notre Dame running back.

Saturday's verbal pledge from Katy (TX) Cinco Ranch running back Jamel James to Notre Dame's now 18-player recruiting class caught almost everyone by surprise. Regardless, a quick look at James on film shows that Irish fans will enjoy their late July present.

James, considered one of the top running backs in the Midlands, brings an old-school mentality to the field and while some may want to compare him to former Irish running back "The Bus" Jerome Bettis, the way James keeps his pistons pumping reminds me more of a diesel.


The physical size, 6-foot, 210-pounds, is a major benefit when you watch James run the football. He's not afraid of contact and always looks to deliver the blow instead of taking one. While top end speed is a question, James shows on several runs the ability to break away and not be caught from behind.


At one time James looked to be headed to Arkansas so this is his second pledge issued. Add in the fact James has never visited Notre Dame's campus and you have to worry about how solid the pledge can be. Some talk has other programs backing away from James after a perceived subpar junior year. James says he's learned a lot and has done some growing up. Everyone will know in short order because now all eyes will be on him as he plays his senior year.


Is James too good to be true? His film shows a high level running back that plays power football and doesn't mess around. The Irish last season found use for a strong running game using Jonas Gray as the thunder to Cierre Wood's lightning, and James looks like he could provide some similar thunder storms in an Irish uniform.

Using quick feet and the ability to get his shoulders squared makes James a major weapon all Irish fans will have to keep a close eye on. If he can perform at Notre Dame the way he does on film, look out, because a diesel will be powering up the Irish ground game. Top Stories