After coming up short on cornerbacks last cycle and losing Kalon Gervin’s commitment earlier this month, Notre Dame needed a new approach to recruiting the position.
Donte Burton could be part of that rethink.
The Irish offered the 5-foot-11, 172-pound athlete on Tuesday after Todd Lyght had tracked the three-star from Central Gwinnett in Lawrenceville, Ga., during the spring evaluation period. It appears Burton fits the Irish off the field too. He told Irish Illustrated that he has a 3.7 GPA.
“Me and coach Lyght, we’ve been talking for a little while,” Burton said. “He said he was coming to see me this spring and (yesterday) was that day. He came to see me work out. He had watched my film another time and he liked what he saw and he offered me.”
With offers from Colorado, Louisville, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Pittsburgh, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, West Virginia and Wisconsin, Burton had options before the Irish jumped into the mix. But Notre Dame should have a shot to elevate itself among that group moving forward.
“I think Notre Dame is a big-time program with a lot of prestige and a great history, great fan base and it’s also a program that has a great education background,” Burton said. “It’s a place where you can go to not only ball out on the field but get a great education.
“Notre Dame is definitely among the top of my group.”
If Burton chose Notre Dame, it wouldn’t be his first commitment.
Burton committed to North Carolina on July 13, 2016.
After his commitment, Burton continued to get significant offers while he watched the Tar Heel coaching staff go through changes.
The change in circumstances led to Burton’s de-commitment on April 13.
“The recruiting process, it’s been fun but you have a lot of people looking at you and there’s a bit of a target on your back, a bit,” Burton said. “It’s been a nice process, everybody reaching out to you and wanting you to go to their program. I’m just trying to find the best fit for me right now.”
The Irish are pushing for a visit. Burton said he plans to commit during his senior season.
“I don’t know if I’m going to be able to make it up there for (Irish Invasion), but my dad got off the phone with coach Lyght not too long ago and they’re trying to set some things up,” Burton said. “It’s definitely going to happen this summer.”
Notre Dame does have some familiarity with Burton via commitment Derrik Allen.
“I’ve known Derrik for a while,” Burton said. “Me and Derrik, we’ve been going to camps together since we were freshmen. I’ve got a pretty good relationship with him. Derrik, he’s a good player and he’ll do well at Notre Dame. I haven’t spoken to him yet but I’m sure he’s going to reach out to me.”