Four-star defensive end Carlo Kemp will arrive at Notre Dame today as the weekend’s most important guest.
Kemp will be joined by his mother, younger brother, grandfather and grandmother. Notre Dame needs to impress Kemp and his travelling party considering the Colorado product is one of the few remaining defensive ends that has the Irish under serious consideration.
“I’m most excited about getting out there with all of my family,” Kemp said. “I want them to see it. Last time I was there it was for camp, and we were shuffled back and forth between the cafeteria area and the practice fields. I want to see all the stuff on campus that I missed last time, the history and academic buildings that I’ll be in for the next four years… if I decide to go there. I want to see Touchdown Jesus and be in the stadium. Those are the main things.”
Is a commitment to Notre Dame possible this weekend?
“Yeah, it’s definitely possible,” Kemp said. “If I’m ready, I will talk it over with my family and take that next step. I could definitely see myself loving it and finding it to be the place for me. If I feel it, I’ll know it. That feeling might even come after I visit Notre Dame. I could rest on it for a week or a couple of weeks, and still feel the same way. If I commit, that would definitely be the end of official visits for me out of respect. I will be 100 percent all in to the school.”
Kemp visited Michigan in August and returned to Ann Arbor last weekend for his official visit. He plans to officially visit Colorado on Oct. 17. Nothing has been scheduled to UCLA, which makes his top four along with the Buffaloes, Wolverines and Irish.
Irish Illustrated’s Take: On the surface, Michigan appears to be the team to beat following back-to-back visits to Ann Arbor. But Kemp grew up a Notre Dame fan and he’s bringing his entire family with him on this visit.
If things go according to plan, Notre Dame should feel good about Kemp going Irish sooner than later following this weekend.
David Long’s Plan B at ND?
Four-star cornerback David Long will visit Notre Dame on Saturday but don’t expect the Stanford commit to have a change of heart, at least not until he learns if he’ll be admitted to Stanford.
Long is taking the trip to Notre Dame — he’ll visit Michigan next weekend — just to keep the door open in case his Stanford plans fall through.
“I’m basically using the visit as a way for me to help me in case things don’t work out,” Long said. “I’m not sure exactly what will happen because I haven’t been admitted into Stanford yet. I’m basically preparing for things so I’m not scrambling if things don’t work out. It’s definitely a place I want to see so I’m definitely going to take advantage of the opportunity.”
Notre Dame is a legitimate option for Long but the Irish will have to blow him away during his brief visit to shake up his commitment. Unless the Stanford admissions department rejects Long, expect him to sign with the Cardinal.
Michigan Commit Wants Irish Offer
Last week, the Insider Report told you about Michigan linebacker commit Dele’ Harding, who could add a Notre Dame offer in the future should the Irish miss on prospects higher on their board.
But there’s another linebacker committed to the Wolverines that has Notre Dame interest: Three-star prospect David Reese, who was recently informed by Jim Harbaugh that enrolling mid-year is not an option at Michigan.
As a result, Reese will take official visits and explore options, though he remains committed to Michigan.
It’s important to Reese that he stay in the Midwest. Indiana, Louisville, Kentucky and Notre Dame are potential options. The Irish are the only program in that group to not offer. Reese is high on Notre Dame and wants an offer, so he’s one to monitor going forward.
More Michigan Intrigue
Reese could even cause a domino effect.
There’s been some movement recently with four-star defensive end Khalid Kareem, an Alabama commitment. The Farmington Hills, Mich., product might want to reassess his options. If he does, Notre Dame would be a top contender. There’s optimism the Irish would be a real possibility to flip Kareem.
Same goes for Reese, if offered, and the duo, whose high schools are about 10 minutes apart, have talked out such a scenario along with four-star wide receiver Donnie Corley.
Corley, also from the Detroit area, visited earlier this season and is scheduled to return for the USC game. Might Kareem and/or Reese show up for that game too? It’s worth watching.
Michigan State is still considered the leader for Corley, although that edge isn’t as comfortable as it might’ve been earlier in the process.
Independent of all this, Notre Dame remains in the picture with four-star linebacker Daelin Hayes. He signed financial aid paperwork with USC and remains committed to the Trojans but none of that is binding.
Hayes will be back in South Bend for the USC game as well. Even though his pledge seems reaffirmed, it’s not over.
Studstill Won’t Rush Decision
Notre Dame’s top defensive back target, free safety/cornerback Devin Studstill, has a top three of Miami, Notre Dame and West Virginia. Notre Dame is considered the leader.
“I want to wait as long as I can to make a decision,” Studstill said. “I want to see how the seasons go for the teams and who comes after me the hardest, and what new schools come into the mix.”
Studstill takes his first official visit to Notre Dame next weekend when the Irish play USC. No other official visits have been scheduled.
“I really just want to see a game day atmosphere at Notre Dame since I haven’t seen one before,” said Studstill, who played with Irish linebacker Tevon Coney in high school. “I know they want me and I know how they plan to use me, so I really just want to watch the game and see everything up there.”
Top Sophomores To See Irish
Both consider Clemson their early leader. In addition to the Tigers, Hollifield has offers from Duke, North Carolina, N.C. State and Wake Forest. Venables, who is the son of Tigers’ defensive coordinator Brent Venables, also holds an offer from Texas Tech.
It will be the first trip to Notre Dame for both Hollifield and Venables.
Muskegon (Mich.) offensive tackle Antwan Reed will be making his first trip to Notre Dame. He already checks in at 6-foot-7, 267 pounds with a Tennessee offer in hand.
Where Are Top Targets Visiting?
Four of Notre Dame’s top California prospects will be out on official visits this weekend.
Five-star linebacker Caleb Kelly from Fresno will visit Oregon when the Ducks host Washington State. Kelly’s trip to Notre Dame is set for December. Receiver Javon McKinley will be at Tennessee for the Vols’ home game against Georgia. He’ll officially visit Notre Dame for the USC weekend, which will be his third visit to South Bend.
When Florida State hosts Miami on Saturday night it will get five-star defensive end Oluwole Betiku and four-star defensive back Brandon Burton to Tallahassee. Both prospects are scheduled to be in South Bend next weekend for the USC game.