Five-star high on Irish

Gardena (Calif.) Serra five-star defensive end Oluwole Betiku explains why Notre Dame is among the top contenders in his recruitment. He recently named a top six of Florida, Florida State, Notre Dame, Penn State, Texas A&M and UCLA.

The learning curve of recruiting takes on new meaning with Oluwole Betiku.

The five-star defensive end from Gardena (Calif.) Serra came to the United States from Nigeria in 2013. Before arriving here, he had only played soccer and basketball. Now, he’s a newly minted five-star prospect with more than 20 offers.

Recently, Betiku named a top six of Florida, Florida State, Notre Dame, Penn State, Texas A&M and UCLA. Betiku keeps in contact with Irish associate head coach Mike Denbrock on Twitter.

“The tradition at Notre Dame is really good,” Betiku said. “They say that coaches change, but schools never do. Notre Dame will never change. They have a great education, and it’s a Catholic school. They are at the top on and off the field.”

Betiku will participate in The Opening in July, but he does not anticipate visiting any schools this summer.

“My mentor doesn’t think I should really visit until the visits can be paid for,” Betiku said. “I will definitely look into visiting (Notre Dame) on an official visit, which is why I put them in my top six.”

For Betiku, acquiring a reputable degree will weigh heavily in his college decision.

“Education is No. 1,” Betiku said. “Football is not a guarantee. Anything can happen or slow you down, like an injury. I want a good education so I can make a positive impact in my community.”

The 6-foot-4, 247-pound defensive end projects on the strong side at the next level.

“I am improving, I think,” Betiku said. “I’m learning how to play defensive end better. I’m learning when to slide into the B-gap and when to drop back if it’s a pass, and things like that. I believe I can do whatever I put my mind to.”

Betiku found out on Twitter about his new five-star ranking on Scout.

“I looked online and I was really happy,” Betiku said. “It’s awesome. Everyone at school was coming up to me about it.” Top Stories