EAST CHICAGO, Ind. – Notre Dame will look to add at least four defensive backs in the Class of 2016, and with three-star cornerback Julian Love already in the fold, there will be an emphasis will be on recruiting safeties going forward.
On Friday, Notre Dame offered three-star safety Chacho Ulloa of Corona (Calif.) Centennial during a visit to campus.
“It was a great feeling when coach (Brian) Kelly said those words,” Ulloa said. “What else can I say? You just have to say thank you and there was a bunch of joy that overcame me.
“Coach (Brian) VanGorder and coach (Todd) Lyght wanted to talk to me before they extended out the offer, so they both basically ‘approved,’ but coach Kelly was one to officially offer.”
Ulloa says the staff discussed with him multiple roles he could be asked to fill at Notre Dame.
“It will either be free safety, strong safety or even nickel back,” Ulloa said. “That’s one decision they still have to make. But they said regardless of where I play at safety, I will be learning the nickel because that’s a big part of their defense.”
The 6-foot, 190-pound safety forced 19 turnovers in his last two seasons.
“Notre Dame likes my physicality,” Ulloa said. “I would say everyone loves how I create turnovers. I can get the ball out as a fumble or make the interception. They like my size and speed.”
Ulloa visited Notre Dame as part of the multiple stops his 7-on-7 team, California-based B2GSports, will make during the course of a visit to the Midwest.
“When you walk on the campus, you just feel that history and that vibe,” Ulloa said. “That’s one thing I like most about Notre Dame. The facilities, plus the stadium is electrifying when you walk in there and just imagine the thousands of fans that fill it.”
“I’m kind of keeping everything wide open right now,” Ulloa said. “Basically in the past couple of weeks, everything really picked up, and that’s when I picked up a bunch of my offers. Right now, I’m keeping everything wide open, and I’m going to try to visit as many schools as I can during the offseason.”
Ulloa is already eyeing two destinations for official visits.
“Notre Dame and Michigan State for sure as official visits during the season,” Ulloa said. “But, who knows for sure, anything could happen in the next five to seven months. I’m going to make a top five to seven list of schools before the season starts.”
For Ulloa, academics and early playing time will be defining factors in his decision-making process.
“Academics will be one of my big things because football doesn’t last, and you still want to make a good life for yourself after,” Ulloa said. “The depth of the position is important because I don’t want to sit out at all because I love being on the field. And, the overall vibe of the school, players and coaches. I know coaches come and go, but I want to like the ones that are there when I get there.”
Ulloa is a three-star prospect and is ranked as the No. 6 safety in California and No. 32 safety overall in the Class of 2016.