Notre Dame worked hard last year to recruit Damar Hamlin out of Central Catholic in Pittsburgh, ultimately losing the four-star cornerback to the hometown school.
The Irish didn’t come away empty handed.
Adams committed to the Irish on Sunday night and Hinish followed suit live on local TV a day later.
“It was the education,” Hinish told Irish Illustrated on Sunday about the decision. “It wasn't even about the football aspect. Notre Dame's education, that piece of paper is going to take me a long way in life. Once I get a degree from Notre Dame I'm set for life. The campus is beautiful. The education system up there, you can't beat it. It's an opportunity that I couldn't pass up.”
Hinish saw all he needed to see during his visit to South Bend and after a quick discussion with his parents he reached out to the Notre Dame staff on his way back to Pittsburgh.
“I called the coach when I was on my way back from Notre Dame and he was really excited,” Hinish said. “It's an opportunity I can't pass (up). My parents, they're really happy with my decision. They actually really, really were pushing me to go to Notre Dame just from the educational standpoint. The academics, you just can't beat it. It's a great school. They're really happy for me and really excited.”
The Notre Dame education may have been the primary reason for Hinish selecting the Irish over Penn State, but it wasn’t the only reason.
“Football-wise, Notre Dame is the mecca of college football,” he said. “There's really no other way to describe how Notre Dame is and my heart belongs there.”
As a junior, Hinish finished with 32 tackles and an interception in leading the Vikings to the 4A state championship.
“He has a very high motor,” said Central Catholic coach Terry Totten. “He can play inside or outside. He’s a great kid and a very good leader. He’s a very strong kid and his weight room work ethic is incredible. He’s just an all-around great kid, great student.”
Hinish is listed at 6-foot-3, 285 pounds but Totten believes he’ll be bigger than that when he arrives in South Bend.
“He always had the frame but he has grown and filled out,” Totten said. “There’s probably another inch in him. He’s a big kid.”
Scout.com ranks Hinish as the 33rd best defensive tackle in the country.