Defensive lineman Ben Alexander received a pleasant surprise last week when he found out that he was being offered by Notre Dame.
"I thought it was great," said Alexander of his Irish offer. "I've liked Notre Dame for a very long time. I lived in Ohio for nine years and I really liked Notre Dame. They're a school I've thought about going to for a long time. Now that I've been offered, I'm giving them a lot of thought."
The L.T. Hanna high school star says he also spent some time on the phone with the Notre Dame coaching staff after receiving his offer.
"I talked to coach Lewis first for awhile, and then I talked to a bunch of their coaches. I talked to coach Minter, coach Oliver and coach Weis," Alexander said. "I really liked all of them. They said they really liked my film and they wanted to get me up to their camp or on an unofficial visit."
Will Alexander be making a visit to South Bend any time soon?
"Yeah, I'm going to go up there to see South Bend," Alexander said. "I want to go meet the coaches up there and get a feel for the place. I'll probably go up in the summer."
Alexander has used him impressive junior season to grab some impressive early offers.
"I had 77 tackles, 30 tackles for loss and seven sacks last year," Alexander said. "Coaches tell me they like my quickness off the ball."
A number of top programs have already offered the top defensive tackle prospect.
"Kentucky, North Carolina, Georgia Tech, Duke, Florida State, Virginia Tech, Auburn and now Notre Dame have offered me," Alexander said. "Some others seem to be close to offering me."
The Anderson, S.C. native has already visited a number of schools on unofficial visits.
"I've been to Georgia Tech, South Carolina, Clemson twice, North Carolina and Duke," Alexander said. "I liked them all really. Each one had something that I liked about it that was unique to that particular school."
We asked Alexander what he would be looking for when he looks for a school.
"The most important thing is to get a great education," he said. "I want to have it if I don't play another down of football after college, I'll be fine. I want a degree that I can use anywhere in the nation. I want a degree that can open a lot of doors for me.
"I also will see how I fit in with the players and coaches. You spend a lot of time with these people so I want to enjoy the players I play with and the coaches I'm working for.
"I also want to play for a team that will compete for a National Championship."
Will Alexander make an early decision?
"No, I think I'm going to take all five of my visits before I decide," he said.
Comments: The Irish appear to have a shot at Alexander. He seemed genuinely excited about his offer from Notre Dame. He seems like a player who'd fit in well at Notre Dame. Make sure you check out his film in his profile. He's quite impressive on film.