Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah earned first-team all-state honors in the Virginia High School League balloting during his senior season at Bethel High School in Hampton, Va. He also led his basketball team to the state championship game.
Verbally committed to Virginia since October, Owusu-Koramoah was swayed late in the recruiting process by new Notre Dame defensive coordinator Mike Elko, who had recruited him while still employed by Wake Forest.
National Ranking: Three-star prospect and No. 83 safety by Scout; No. 31 athlete by 247Sports.com; No. 28 safety by ESPN.com; No. 40 safety by Rivals.com.
Irish Illustrated Rank: Consensus No. 8 pick by the Irish Illustrated staff in 21-man class with a high of No. 4.
Likelihood of Freshman Red-shirt: Low
2017 PATH TO PLAYING TIME
Owusu-Koramoah’s athleticism and physicality likely makes him the apple of special teams coordinator Brian Polian’s eye and an across-the-board special teams candidate from Day One. He’ll enter camp as the No. 3 Rover behind veteran Drue Tranquill and rising red-shirt sophomore Asmar Bilal. If he can provide qualities that surpass Tranquill and/or Bilal, it won’t be a surprise if earns reps on defense.
Another possibility, although Notre Dame has not hinted at anything other than a spot on the Rover depth chart…Perhaps Owusu-Koramoah could give the safety position a lift.
With the multiplicity of skills that he brings to the program, it’s difficult to envision any Notre Dame defense -- at the very least from 2018 on -- that does not have Owusu-Koramoah as a central figure within the scheme. His combination of athletic/physical ability – mixed with a great desire to succeed – is a rare find, particularly at the late stage in the recruiting process that Notre Dame landed him.
The first player that comes to mind – going back to 1990-93 – is Winter Haven, Fla. product and former Irish safety John Covington. Listed at 6-foot-1, 202 pounds in ‘91, Covington played outside linebacker as a sophomore with 58 stops.
Covington moved to safety full time as a junior in ’92, finishing fourth on the team in tackles with 63 stops and three interceptions. He was fifth in tackles with 58 and two interceptions on the great ’93 squad.
Owusu-Koramoah arrives listed at a comparable 6-foot-2, 205 pounds with outside linebacker/safety skills. He has the same physicality/mindset that propelled Covington into the starting lineup on the 1991-93 Irish teams that went 31-5-1.
“A very athletic player. Has range, has athleticism…he can really do a lot of things on a football field. He’s just so dimensional in what he can do. Just a tremendous fit for our Rover position. He loves ball and wants to play at the highest level.” -- DC Mike Elko
“A rangy athlete that has coverage and blitz skills. He’s all over the place. He’s also physical in the run game. There’s something inside of him that’s pushing him to another level. There will be times that I have to tell him to pull back, but that’s exactly the kind of person you want.” -- LB coach Clark Lea