Irish Move Up with Aldridge

<p>James Aldridge of Merrillville High School (Ind.) might be the best player in the state, and he's getting a lot of recruiting attention from the top programs in the country. Where does Notre Dame stand with Aldridge, and has he planned a trip to Notre Dame this spring? </p>

There's no doubt that James Aldridge is one of the top players in the state of Indiana. Heck, he might be the top player in the Midwest. But even with Notre Dame's close proximity to Merrillville, it seemed as if Aldridge's interest in Notre Dame was waning. Not true said Aldridge when I recently spoke with him.

"Oklahoma State, Ohio State and Notre Dame," Aldridge said when I asked which teams were his top schools. "Purdue's up there as well. I still like Miami (Fla.), Michigan, Kansas State, and Virginia is starting to recruit me more."

I was a little surprised because it had seemed like Notre Dame had been slipping with James, so I asked him why Notre Dame appeared to make a move up his list.

"Well, a lot of people have been talking to me about Notre Dame and telling me that I should really take a serious look at them," he said. "They have a great education and when you graduate you'll be set with their degree. I also looked at their depth at running back, and there's an opportunity to play.

"I also know Munir Prince from when I lived in St. Louis," he added. "He lived two minutes away from me and he was one of my best friends. He is being recruited by Notre Dame and has good things to say about it."

I asked James if he planned to make a trip to Notre Dame in the future.

"Yeah, I'm going up to watch a practice on April 2nd," replied Aldridge. "I'd like to make it up a couple more, but I haven't had a chance to talk to the coaches. They actually sent the invitation to my coach, and when I called I spoke to someone in the office and just told them I wanted to come (April 2)."

Comments: I will admit I was a little surprised that Aldridge had Notre Dame as high on his list as he did. If he gets the chance, he'd like to visit several more times spring and that will certainly improve Notre Dame's chances. There is a long way to go with this one – Irish Eyes will follow up with James after his visit. Top Stories