Four-star junior Paris Ford had heard plenty about Notre Dame from his half-brother, former Irish defensive back Darrin Walls. On Friday, the 6-foot-2, 185-pound junior four-star safety from Seton-LaSalle High School in Pittsburgh got a firsthand look at the school.
Ford, along with four-star senior cornerback Damar Hamlin and Hamlin’s father, arrived in South Bend late Thursday night and made his way to campus early on Friday.
“It went well; it went real well,” Ford said. “We walked in and met all the coaches. We saw their new Under Armour jerseys and they told us how they signed an eight-year deal with them. They showed us their new gear and how their weight program works. They showed us about their academics and how their graduation rates were so high.”
Ford and Hamlin later ate lunch with Irish head coach Brian Kelly.
During his talks with the Irish coaching staff Ford learned just how important he is to Notre Dame’s future recruiting class.
“They said I’m No. 1 on their board for 2017,” Ford said. “They told me if I come I could expect early playing time. That sounds good. I’m definitely looking at that.”
Overall, Ford liked what he saw in South Bend.
“It was great to finally get up there and touch base with everyone,” he said. “It was really more than I expected it to be. This is probably the best college visit I had so far.”
He plans to see several more colleges and take a few official visits as a senior before making a final decision.
“I’m just going to keep taking everything slow to make sure I don’t make the wrong decision,” he said. “I’m going to take all my official visits and see where I’m at. I’ll probably commit sometime after this football season.”
As a sophomore, Ford caught 35 passes for 600 yards and 13 touchdowns. He also recorded 58 solo tackles and three interceptions on defense.
Scout.com ranks Ford as the 10th best safety in the class of 2017 and the 154th best prospect in the nation.