Big Board: Defense

With signing day two months away, Irish Eyes breaks down Notre Dame's top remaining prospects on defense and the chances the Irish has of landing them.

Total commitments: 21 (1 QB, 1 RB, 3 WR, 3 OL, 4 DL, 4 DB, 4 LB, 1 K)

Likely to still add: 3-4

Positions of need: DB, DE, RB, WR

Defensive line

Four-star DE Mekhi Brown - An Alabama commit, Brown visited Notre Dame officially in September and gave the trip a great review, but the chances Brown ends up in South Bend are slim. Here is where an 0-4 end to the season likely plays a factor in recruiting.

Four-star DE Porter Gustin - Gustin visited Notre Dame officially for the Michigan game, and he and his family like what Notre Dame has to offer. But, it's difficult to see Gustin peeling away from the west coast, and USC and Arizona State are the favorites to land him. Gustin visited USC this past weekend for the Notre Dame game, and he'll return to USC in one week for an official visit.

Four-star DT Christian Wilkins - Wilkins maintains that he will give an official visit to Notre Dame, though nothing has been scheduled. Penn State and Clemson are likely the front-runners here. Boston College, Ohio State and Stanford are also in the mix, and Notre Dame is the only school that has yet to receive a visit. Notre Dame continues to make a push to get him on campus.

Four-star DE Joseph Wicker - Irish Eyes touched base with Wicker today (Monday), and nothing has changed - Notre Dame will receive an official, though nothing has been planned. Expect the visit to happen in January. Texas Tech and Arizona State have received officials, and UCLA is the front-runner.

Defensive back

Five-star Iman Marshall - Marshall appears to have shifted from a surefire official visitor to one that's in the uncertain column. While it's possible he gets on campus for banquet weekend as his dad told Irish Eyes would be the case, he has not planned anything.

Four-star Ykili Ross - Ross visited Notre Dame on an official visit for the Louisville game, and despite the loss, Notre Dame took a step in the right direction to land him. He visited USC on an unofficial for the Irish game in Southern Cal this past weekend, and this weekend he'll head to Oklahoma for an official visit. USC conducted their in-home visit last night (Sunday), and the Trojans are likely the team to beat.

Four-star Frank Buncom - Buncom is Notre Dame's top defensive back prospect on the board. He visited Notre Dame on an official visit for the Stanford game, and the Cardinal is the team that leads for his services. Notre Dame was tentatively scheduled to visit Buncom Sunday night on an in-home, but that didn't occur because Buncom had not yet returned from his official to Vanderbilt. Stanford has been the favorite for the longest period of time, and he'll take an official there in January.

Four-star Calvin Brewton - A Florida State commit, Brewton will be a tough steal from the Seminoles. He took his visit to Notre Dame for the North Carolina game in October. He also saw the Irish play in Tallahassee.

Three-star Ben Edwards - If signing day were tomorrow, Edwards would likely be Notre Dame's best best at landing at defensive back in this class. He visited officially for the Louisville game, and he told Irish Eyes that visit launched Notre Dame to position as co-leader in his recruitment with Stanford.

Three-star Nathan Meadors - Offered last week by Notre Dame, Meadors has expressed high interest in the Irish out of the gate. Other recent offers include UCLA and Washington, and the Bruins are his leader. Notre Dame will likely receive an official, and the staff (VanGorder, Cooks, Elliott) will conduct an in-home with Meadors tonight (Monday).

Three-star Hunter Dale - Look for this teammate of Irish linebacker commit Bo Wallace to visit in January if Notre Dame is still a player. His recent visits include Florida and Miami.

Three-star Gary Jennings - Jennings is on the list of visitors for banquet weekend in two weeks. His only official visit thus far has been to Wisconsin. North Carolina, Vanderbilt, Virginia and Wisconsin are also in the mix. It's worth knowing that Jennings prefers wide receiver, and Notre Dame is recruiting him for defense.

Three-star Adonis Williamson - This Indianapolis, Indiana product hasn't added an offer, but his pure athleticism could change that in coming months. Should Notre Dame offer, it would likely slide into the drivers seat to land him. His offers include Cincinnati, Indiana, Missouri, Northern Illinois and Virginia Tech. Top Stories