Brey targets new big man

Michael Edwards kept his recruitment alive last fall instead of signing. That’s paid off for the senior forward from Westland, Mich., as several major programs have come calling. Notre Dame made its presence known for the first time this week.

Patience will pay for Michael Edwards in the recruiting process.

The 6-foot-9 forward took an official visit to Northern Illinois last fall but never signed with any program. Instead, the senior from Westland, Mich., kept his options open with an eye toward playing his way into a better destination this spring.

Then he went out and averaged 18.8 points, 10.3 rebounds, 2.3 steals and 2.5 blocks per game in his final season at John Glenn High School after putting up about four points and four rebounds per game as a junior.

College coaches have taken notice.

“Mainly it was a lot of work over the summer just in the gym and AAU and all that,” Edwards said. “We also got a new coach with a different style.”

At the start of his senior year Edwards’ offer list was limited to Northern Illinois, Detroit and Akron. Now he has scholarships on the table from Auburn, Bowling Green, Georgia, Kansas State, Marquette, Nebraska, Pittsburgh and SMU. Georgia hosted Edwards on an official visit last week.

Notre Dame and UCLA have recently started to express interest. Irish assistant Anthony Solomon watched Edwards earlier this week with Notre Dame’s revamped March reputation part of the appeal.

“The main thing that sticks out is they made it to the Elite 8,” Edwards said. “They just lost last week. What kind of impressed me is right after they lost they called me. It was right after the NCAA tournament, so that was cool.”

Edwards noted Notre Dame’s style of play while watching the postseason.

“I watched a few games of theirs and think I’d fit in there,” he said. “I think for me being a stretch four, I can’t really explain it. I think it would just fit well with my style being a stretch four.”

Notre Dame plans to get another live evaluation as Edwards continues to sort out the recruiting process. Right now there are no other trips on the schedule, although Edwards plans to take “at least two” more official visits.

He’s starting to compare and contrast programs involved based on certain key factors.

“How I can come in and contribute,” Edwards said. “If I can get playing time starting as a freshman. Another thing is we’re looking at what coaches developed guys the most and sent them to the league. Also just overall, a great atmosphere.”


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