West Certain on Irish Visit

Oklahoma City, Okla. athlete George West has been making big plays for Northeast high school this season, and next season he's hoping that he'll be making plays on the college gridiron. Irish Eyes caught up with West to see how recruiting was progressing for him.

"Pretty good," George West replied when asked how his recruiting was progressing. "I set up an official visit to Notre Dame on October 15 for the USC game.

"Right now I'm focusing on my season because there are a lot of expectations. We're off to a good start and we start district this week.

"I guess I kind of need to start thinking about things more. I've been talking to the coaches at Texas Tech, Northwestern, Texas A&M and Iowa State about setting up visits, but I haven't set any official visits yet other than the one to Notre Dame.

"I'm still open to most schools, and I'm looking at my options right now. I haven't decided on which ones I'll visit other than I know I'm going to Notre Dame.

"I know I need to do it soon. I want my parents to go with me on my visits, so as soon as my parents get a date, I'll start checking that with the home games of the other teams. They (West's parents) are going to Notre Dame with me. A lot of people down here have talked about it, so they want to go up and see the campus."

While West has been busy with his schedule and the Notre Dame season is in full swing, has he had a chance to stay in touch with the Irish coaching staff?

"Yeah I talk to coach Haywood every week," he said. "I still talk to coach Weis. He called me last Sunday.

Notre Dame started the season with two impressive wins before stumbling against Michigan State in Weis' home opener. Prior to the start of the season Weis could only sell recruits on his experience and his coaching philosophy. Now that he has coached a few contests, recruits are starting to get a feel for how a Charlie Weis coached team will play.

"The offense has been everything they told me it would be. It seems like they have pretty much dominated the defenses," West explained. "I was really trying to understand the plays and everything. I was trying to see myself doing certain things in the offense. I really like what's going on. It seems like it's a big jump from where they were last year. It seems like they have a lot more intensity. I don't know if it came from having a chance to play for a new coach or it's because they're playing for a coach that has the experience that he (Weis) does. I can tell just looking at the game that the players really want to play and they even have a swagger to them."

West isn't the only prospect to take notice as the Irish received two more commitments from the Michigan State weekend bring the total commitments to 16. With the number of scholarship spots available decreasing by the week, does West feel any urgency to make a decision?

"Seeing Notre Dame play and the way they're playing right now, I know it might get other players interested in playing for them," West said. "In terms of them committing and certain scholarships being gone, I guess I can kind of sense that creeping up my back, but I'm not going to have that rush me into a decision.

"I've talked to a player that has already committed and he told me the good things about Notre Dame and why he picked them, but he also stressed that I need to look at my options and find out what's best for me." West replied. "I was also told that by the coaching staff, so I'm pretty comfortable with my situation right now."

Since the available scholarships is decreasing, players who can play more than one position may have an advantage over others, because they can fill more than one need for the team. West's versatility to play wide receiver or cornerback is certainly an asset.

"They were looking at me for offense," said West. "Coach Haywood said if I came down there I could be labeled as an athlete, because if I felt more comfortable on defensive side of the ball and if that was the quickest way for me to get on the field, then I could see myself moving to defense. They pretty much are leaving it up me. I'm always open to doing what's best for the team."

On the season, Wets has returned three punts and two kick-offs for touchdowns. He also has two receiving touchdowns and one interception.

Comments: Notre Dame has been staying in close contact with West. He has been very impressed with the attitude of the Irish this season and he likes what coach Weis has done with the offense. It is a very good sign that he set his visit to Notre Dame first. I believe that it is a sign of how important the visit is to him and his parents.

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