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Master List: Offense

Notre Dame hosted both its receiver commitments during the Stanford weekend, solidifying that position while continuing to work on Jamire Calvin’s visit. Offensive line is still a work in progress with Harry Hiestand pursuing elite targets.


Avery Davis
6-0, 193
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Sanford Committed on March 19
UPDATE: After missing a couple games earlier this season with an ankle injury, Davis is rounding into form. He’s 57-of-73 (78 percent) for 941 yards and 18 touchdowns against just one interception in his last four games. Cedar Hill averaged 60 points in those outings, all wins.
Notes: Maybe it’s taken longer than expected, but Avery Davis is playing like one of the nation’s elite quarterback prospects again. Davis threw two interceptions in a season-opening loss to Bishop Gorman then missed the next two games with an ankle injury. Needless to say, he’s back in a big way. Cedar Hill is 6-2 and rolling up a ton of points behind Davis, who’s thrown six touchdown passes in a game twice in his last four games. Overall, Davis is completing 69 percent of his passes (98-of-142) in six games played this season. That’s led to 1,384 yards and 21 touchdowns against just three interceptions.

Running Back

Robert Burns
5-11, 206
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Denson Top Offers: Miami
UPDATE: Burns, a Miami commitment, visited Notre Dame back in the spring and it was a trip that seemed to vault the Irish into contention. There’s been talk of a return but it’s unclear if either side wants to push for that to happen.
C.J. Holmes
6-0, 190
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Booker Committed on July 8
Notre Dame won out for Holmes with a strong Irish Invasion visit then scored a public commitment at The Opening Finals a few weeks later. Holmes is an athletic, versatile back capable of splitting out to slot receiver. He’ll take his official visit for the home opener.
Notes: Notre Dame owns plenty running back depth with Tarean Folston, Josh Adams and Dexter Williams all in the rotation. And that’s not even to mention Tony Jones Jr., who’s down on the depth chart and should red-shirt. There’s just not enough carries to get everyone involved. That’s the backfield C.J. Holmes will join next year. Holmes brings his own unique skill set as more an athlete than pure running back. He can play slot receiver as well. Whether anyone else decides to join Holmes this cycle — or whether Notre Dame even wants another back — remains to be seen. Colin Wilson made a long expected commitment to Louisville recently. Stephen Carr used to mention Notre Dame as a visit possibility despite a longtime commitment to USC, but it seems like a long shot to happen now. In the end, USC is likely to keep Carr in the fold anyway. Robert Burns is a prospect the Irish have liked for some time with a spring visit in the books. It’s not necessarily clear how that relationship stands at this point. Burns talked about visiting in the fall for a game with his family. If that happens, he could be in play. But overall, it seems the staff with Holmes as the only commitment.

Wide Receiver / Tight End

Jamire Calvin
5-10, 165
Offer: Yes Visit: No Recruiter: Denbrock Top Offers: Alabama, Arizona State, UCLA
UPDATE: Calvin continues to work out Notre Dame visit plans. He targeted the Miami game but postponed. That’s not necessarily a bad sign. Calvin has been high on the Irish for some time and isn’t likely to make a decision without visiting.
Jeremiah Holloman
6-2, 185
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Booker Top Offers: Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee
Holloman visited for the Michigan State game. That might be about as good as it gets for Notre Dame in this one. SEC programs have made more inroads, notably Georgia and Tennessee. It’s a battle between those two at the moment.
Noah Igbinoghene
6-0, 185
Offer: Yes Visit: No Recruiter: Denson Top Offers: Duke, Maryland, Virginia Tech
Igbinoghene cut to five at the end of July with Duke, Maryland, Missouri, Notre Dame and Virginia Tech remaining. He went on to say Duke and Notre Dame are “kind of co-leaders” heading into official visits, which aren’t set.
Hezekiah Jones
5-11, 185
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Stanford Top Offers: Texas A&M
Jones renewed his relationship with Notre Dame by visiting for the Michigan State game, a second trip to campus. It will be difficult to move Jones off his Texas A&M commitment, but the Irish are determined to keep trying on one of its top receiver targets.
Cole Kmet
6-6, 240
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Denbrock Committed on Oct. 2, 2015  
Kmet missed the first three games of this season while recovering from a bout with mono. He returned in Week 4 and made five catches for 92 yards while playing a little defense as well.
Oliver Martin
?6-1, 185?
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Denbrock Top Offers: Michigan, Michigan State, Oregon
UPDATE: Notre Dame emerged as a serious player with a late summer offer. Martin visited in August and again for Michigan State. That interest appears to have since fallen off as Michigan, Michigan State and in-state Iowa have more of a foothold.
Jordan Pouncey
6-3, 186
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Denson Committed on June 18
UPDATE: Pouncey returned for the first time since Irish Invasion for the Stanford game, this time with both parents. Notre Dame appeared to solidify itself as the choice with the entire family. That’s good news as other programs have continued to stay in touch.
Brock Wright
6-5, 240
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Booker Committed on June 26, 2015
Wright has been committed for well over a year and remains one of Notre Dame’s top pledges. After missing out on Irish Invasion this summer, he returned to campus for the Michigan State game to reconnect with fellow commitments.
Michael Young
5-11, 178
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Denson Committed on July 20
UPDATE: Young spent the Stanford weekend at Notre Dame and talked to other commitments about being part of the solution to a surprisingly down season. Like Pouncey, Young appears solid even with other programs keeping contact.
Notes: Tight end recruiting has been done for over a year with Cole Kmet and Brock Wright solidly in the fold. They represent one of the best pairings in the country and an uptick in talent at the position. Wide receiver recruiting has solidified somewhat with Jordan Pouncey and Michael Young taking their official visits for the Stanford game. Other programs hadn’t backed off either Irish commit, and likely won’t in the future, but getting them on campus again helps ward off others even during a rough stretch. If there’s one player that’s still considered a strong possibility for Notre Dame, it’s Jamire Calvin. Few prospects have been as high on the Irish in recent months as Calvin, who’s still working out visit details. Getting him on campus could seal a commitment sooner than later. Tarik Black is officially off the list after at one time looking like a Notre Dame lean. Michigan grabbed hold of the momentum in August and doesn’t seem likely to let go. It could be a similar situation with Oliver Martin despite early feelings the Irish would be a serious player. That’s trailed off during the season with Big Ten programs remaining atop the list. As it stands now, adding to the wide receiver haul could come down to Calvin as the lone possibility.

Offensive Line

Aaron Banks
6-7, 344
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Hiestand Top Offers: Oregon, UCLA, USC
UPDATE: Banks followed up on an early August visit by returning for the Michigan State game. He’s raved about the Irish after both trips, so it’s clear they’ve made an impact. Could it be enough to pull Banks off the West Coast? That’s hard to say, but there are reasons for cautious optimism.
Dillan Gibbons
6-5, 315
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Hiestand Committed on April 4, 2015
Harry Hiestand struck early with Gibbons, who’s already been committed for more than a year. Gibbons was the first pledge in the Class of 2017. He’s likely destined for guard at the next level.
Robert Hainsey
6-5. 270
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Hiestand Committed on July 10
Hainsey gave Notre Dame its third commitment on the offensive line and another four-star prospect. He chose the Irish over Michigan and Michigan State at The Opening Finals. Probably a guard at the next level, Hainsey brings a rugged mentality to go with a technically proficient game.
Josh Lugg
6-6, 280
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Hiestand Committed on August 14, 2015
Lugg returned to campus for lineman camp in June for a chance to work with Hiestand again. Fellow commitment Dillan Gibbons was on hand as well. Off the field, Lugg has been one of the most active recruiters among the current commitments.
Foster Sarell
6-6, 300
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Hiestand Top Offers: Alabama, Oklahoma, Stanford
UPDATE: Notre Dame continues to make things complicated for the nation’s top offensive tackle prospect with strong visits. Sarell returned for the Stanford game and left with positive reviews. If he leaves the West Coast, Notre Dame would be the destination.
Trey Smith
6-6, 300
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Hiestand Top Offers: Alabama, Clemson, Tennessee  
UPDATE: Pretty much everyone and their brother believes Tennessee lands Smith in the end. But Alabama, Clemson, Notre Dame, Ohio State and Ole Miss are still on the list with Smith planning a December announcement. There’s been talk of a Virginia Tech game visit but that’s yet to be locked into place.
Jedrick Wills
6-5, 300
Offer: Yes Visit: Yes Recruiter: Hiestand Top Offers: Alabama, LSU, Ohio State
UPDATE: If nothing else, Wills’ recruitment continues to stay interesting. Michigan got him on campus for its game against Wisconsin. Alabama remains a heavy contender after a summer move. Notre Dame will likely be in it until the end but is waiting for another visit to get set up.
Notes: Harry Hiestand is used to having his offensive line class wrapped up by now. But there’s still work to do even with Dillan Gibbons, Robert Hainsey and Josh Lugg firmly committed. Foster Sarell remains the top target and perhaps most likely commitment, although that doesn’t mean the Irish lead. Sarell visited for Irish Invasion and followed up with a trip back for the Stanford game. Hiestand and the current group of offensive linemen continue to impress. Tommy Kraemer served as host on the official visit. Hiestand followed up by making the trek to the Seattle area to check on Sarell during the bye week. Will it all be enough to get Sarell away from the West Coast? That’s the biggest question. Stanford and a resurgent Washington remain two of the biggest contenders. Nebraska hosted Sarell on an official visit in September and Alabama is scheduled to do so next month for the Iron Bowl. Aaron Banks has visited twice to positive reviews. But like Sarell, will it be enough to move him off the West Coast? UCLA and USC continue to push along with Arizona State, which wants a visit. Trey Smith and Jedrick Wills are even more dubious possibilities. Pretty much the entire recruiting world expects Smith to land at in-state Tennessee eventually. Smith visited Alabama recently and is scheduled to see Ohio State for the Michigan game with an announcement set for Dec. 6. After much speculation he could commit to Alabama over the summer, Wills visited Michigan in early October and has been trending up since. Notre Dame has always been a contender with Wills but seems to hang more on the fringes rather than being a serious possibility.


Updated 10/26/16 Top Stories