Troy Pride Jr. plans to give some college program an early Christmas gift.
Pride revealed Sunday night via Twitter that he plans to make a verbal commitment on Thursday, a Christmas Eve announcement. It will be a second commitment of the recruiting process for Pride, a one-time Virginia Tech pledge.
Finalists for the three-star cornerback from Greer, S.C., appear to be Notre Dame, N.C. State, North Carolina and Virginia Tech. Notre Dame and N.C. State both played host for official visits. North Carolina also got an unofficial visit.
Virginia Tech remains under consideration with some defensive staff members being retained by new head coach Justin Fuente. North Carolina had been trying to secure an official visit after the current dead period.
In-state programs Clemson and South Carolina have popped up recently as well. Clemson recently offered while South Carolina resurfaced with Will Muschamp taking over the program.
Pride named the Irish, however, when asked last week for a leader during Shrine Bowl practices.
“I would say Notre Dame right now is sticking out the most to me,” Pride told PackPride.com, which covers N.C. State on the Scout.com network.
Notre Dame began courting Pride even before his formal de-commitment from Virginia Tech. The cornerback officially reopened his recruitment when longtime Hokies head coach Frank Beamer announced retirement plans on Nov. 1, effective at the end of this season.
Running backs coach Autry Denson, area recruiter, and defensive backs coach Todd Lyght have kept up a consistent effort throughout the process. Both visited the Pride family during the contact period.
“Coach Denson makes us feel pretty special,” Pride’s mother, Angie, told Irish Illustrated last week. “Some schools tell you something and go cold. Notre Dame took longer with their evaluation of Troy, but they have been very consistent. Denson feels like a brother to me. We are just very comfortable around him. He sends me motivational stuff that’s probably different than what he sends Troy and I like all of that. We can laugh and talk about it.
“During his visit, he was seriously here for three hours. From 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. We were just talking and laughing. He was comfortable around us. We really like his personality. He’s not all business and we can ask him anything. I love his transparency.”