Five on Friday
Friday, Feb. 22 was a noteworthy day for the Notre Dame staff, as they dipped into Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Illinois and Louisiana to extend offers to five players in the 2014 class. A recap of the five players that were offered Friday and where they stand with the Irish: ----- Who: Malachi Dupre (6'3", 175) – No. 3 ranked wide receiver in 2014 out of River Ridge (La.) John Curtis Christian By the numbers: In 2012, Dupre caught 36 passes for 815 yards and 15 touchdowns to help lead his team to an undefeated season and a national championship win. The latest on Dupre, including a potential Notre Dame visit and fending off pressure to attend in-state LSU What's the deal: Dupre really likes the in-state LSU Tigers, but I think he's realizing he's got an opportunity to use the recruiting process as an eye-opening experience. Notre Dame has everything he's looking for, considering he's bred from a winning program in high school and has a good head on his shoulders. I believe this is a guy that will use his visits wisely and head to places he wouldn't otherwise visit. This is a big fish; he's going to be high on everyone's board. Location may ultimately be a factor. Key is getting him on campus, and I see that happening. ----- Who: Natrell Curtis (6'2", 300) – No. 6 ranked offensive guard in 2014 out Phoenix (Az.) Mountain Pointe The latest on Curtis, including the "unexpected" offer from the Irish and his plan to visit Notre Dame What's the deal: Notre Dame offered Curtis as a nose guard. Curtis was pretty set on playing somewhere in California before the Irish offered, but I think he's open to hearing from a lot of schools at this point. He's still waiting for UCLA and USC offers, but he has visited UCLA and is pretty high on them. In an interview after he received his Irish offer, he stated he wants to visit the Irish this spring, but if it doesn't happen, Notre Dame will "for sure" get an official visit. This one might come down to who does the best job of recruiting Curtis and presenting an overall package, something the Irish can excel at. ----- Who: Josh Frazier (6'3", 310) – No. 2 ranked defensive tackle in 2014 out of Springdale (Ark.) Har-Ber The latest on Frazier, including his affection for the SEC What's the deal: Frazier likes the idea of playing in the SEC. Alabama may be the leader. He has said the three offers he "really" wants are LSU, Georgia and Texas A&M. However, Frazier plans to take the recruiting process in stride and has mentioned he'll hold out on a commitment until he takes all of his official visits. Irish were pretty involved with Frazier last fall, but had since backed off some. (Hence, I don't think this offer was all that shocking.) ----- Who: Kyle Gibson (6'0", 165) – safety/corner out of Seffner (Fla.) Armwood The latest from Gibson includes a film breakdown from Scout.com's Jamie Newberg. What's the deal: It's still very early in the process for Gibson, and undoubtedly, he'll pick up more offers this spring. He has a good relationship with the Notre Dame staff, and I think that Notre Dame jumping on board relatively early with Gibson will reap benefits in terms of potential visits for Gibson. If Florida, Florida State, and Miami don't recruit Gibson, I find it hard to believe that he won't leave the Sunshine state. So far, things have been relatively quiet for Gibson on that front. Gibson also has offers from Michigan State, Mississippi State, UCLA, Vanderbilt, Louisville, UCF and USF. ----- Who: Ian Bunting (6'6", 215) – tight end out of Hinsdale (Ill.) Hinsdale Central By the numbers: In 2012, Bunting caught 16 passes for 412 yards and four touchdowns. The latest on Bunting, including naming Notre Dame in his top three What's the deal: Bunting won't be shy about leaving Illinois, or the Midwest for that matter. He has a top three of Oregon, Vanderbilt and Notre Dame, and a winning program is important to him. Education is also an important factor, which will play in Notre Dame's favor. How much the Irish make him a priority will heavily factor into Bunting's decision. One tight end is likely the cut-off for the Irish in 2014. Bunting will visit Notre Dame April 13. A look at IrishEyes.com Big Board for 2014.
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