Three-star defensive tackle Dalyn Wade-Perry recently announced a Top 8 that included Notre Dame.
On Wednesday, the 6-foot-3, 330-pounder from Pope John XXIII High School in Sparta, N.J., began a two-day visit to South Bend to learn more about the Irish.
“It was great,” Wade-Perry said. “Notre Dame is up there. They're up there towards the top.”
Florida, Michigan State, Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers, Stanford and UCLA round out Wade-Perry’s short list.
Wade-Perry spent time Wednesday watching the Irish in their offseason workout, then he met with Irish recruiting coordinator Mike Elston.
“We watched practice, it was like OTAs, and watched the guys lift,” he said. “We had a meeting with coach Elston. He was basically telling me what makes Notre Dame different from everyone else in the country. From there we ate with the team and I went out and hung out with some of the players, played video games, some simple Wednesday night stuff and then I went back to my hotel.”
Wade-Perry spent a lot of time with Brandon Wimbush, a freshman quarterback who hails from the Garden State. Wade-Perry and Wimbush are friends and had the chance to catch up.
“He said it's a lot of hard work but you have a lot of support,” Wade-Perry said.
On Thursday, Wade-Perry toured campus and met with several other Notre Dame coaches and staff members.
“I did a lot,” he said. “I got on campus around 8:30 and had a little meeting with coach (Scott) Booker and then coach (Keith) Gilmore and coach (Brian) Kelly. I had a meeting with the AD and the academic advisors. I met with a lot of people. I had a campus tour and checked out the Grotto.”
Gilmore, the Irish defensive line coach, and defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder explained to Wade-Perry how valuable he would be in South Bend.
“Coach Gilmore said I'm one of their top interior recruits they're looking at,” Wade-Perry said. “He said he wants me inside at the 1-tech or 3-tech. I also talked to coach VanGorder and he basically said that I have the size and strength to play right away. That means a lot. It means hard work paid off. It's nice to hear coaches talk about the way you play.”
Scout.com ranks Wade-Perry as the 33rd best defensive tackle in the country.