Irish impress four-star junior with offer

Four-star junior T.J. Pledger landed an offer during a visit to Notre Dame on Thursday. He hopes to return in the fall for a game day look at the Irish.

T.J. Pledger’s first trip to Notre Dame turned out to be a good one.

The 5-foot-9, 190-pound four-star junior running back from Chaminade College Prep in West Hills, Calif., visited South Bend on Thursday and left with an offer from the Irish.

“It was a pretty good visit,” Pledger said. “It was my first time up there. I got a chance to meet all the coaches and start to build a relationship with the coaching staff. I also go to talk to the academic advisors and stuff like that so it was a good visit overall.”

Irish head coach Brian Kelly personally extended the offer and Pledger hopes to return this fall for a game day visit.

“Coach Kelly actually brought me into his office and offered me personally,” Pledger said. “It meant a lot coming from the head man, so that was big. I definitely think it was a big offer. I'm just going to try to set some visits, some game visits at Notre Dame.”

Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, Georgia, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, USC and UCLA are among the other 17 schools that have offered.

During the visit, Pledger spoke with several members of the coaching staff and academic support personnel.

He saw a lot to like at Notre Dame.

“Definitely the list of running backs that came through Notre Dame was impressive and also just how the program is trending and I also think that coach (Autry) Denson is a legendary running back at Notre Dame,” he said. “He told me the way he coaches and some of the things I'd be doing at Notre Dame. We didn't exactly get into how their running backs are used but I'm sure we'll get into more of that.”

Pledger also recently visited Miami and Ohio State.

He’s shutting down recruiting for the rest of summer while he prepares for his junior season.

“I'm done for the summer,” he said. “I've got to focus on my team and winning a state title.”

As a sophomore, Pledger rushed 191 times for 1,331 yards and 26 touchdowns. He also caught 33 passes for 381 yards.

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