Beyond Justin Tuck, who was drafted by the New York Giants in the third round of last April's NFL Draft, Notre Dame has not produced any other NFL pass rusher since Bert Berry, who is one of the NFL's most feared pass rushers. Kallen Wade is enrolling into Notre Dame with the mindset that he will be the next great Notre Dame pass rusher.
"To be the best pass rusher anyone has ever seen at Notre Dame," Wade said bluntly of his freshman goals at Notre Dame. "Why not? You have to set your goals high, right?"
Wade is not your typical trash-talking football player, so do not take the above statement as arrogance. He truly believes in his abilities and is working to become a better football player even before he enrolls at Notre Dame.
"I workout with my weight lifting coach actually," Wade said on what he's doing to prepare to get on the field. "He helps me out."
With Wade taking a pro-active approach to his physical conditioning, one can bet that Notre Dame strength and conditioning coach Ruben Mendoza will be pleased to work with Wade once he arrives next summer. Adding weight might be the first priority.
"I'm about 215 pounds right now," said Wade. "I've actually lost about five pounds (since the season began)."
Wade's season is now complete, but to say that he was not happy about the final record and the final game, is an understatement.
"We finished 6-4," Wade said with a sigh. "We lost our last game 13-12. That was a tough loss."
Despite opposing teams staying away from Wade he still had a good senior season, but he still would not have minded a few more sacks. "They said I had around five sacks. They really tried to keep me under wraps," he said of the constant double-teaming. Teams also would run the football away from his side of the field more often than not.
Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis has carried over a simple rule to Notre Dame from his days with the Patriots that will fit right along with the way Wade thinks. "We have zero tolerance for losing." Coach Weis and Wade certainly have a similar mentality for the game of football.
The Notre Dame coaching staff has been keeping in contact with Wade throughout the season despite him committing so early, and he appreciates it.
"Pretty much all of them," Wade said of the Notre Dame coaches that he communicates with. "One coach will send me a text message, then another coach will send me one that same day."
Wade had a good time during his unofficial visit to Notre Dame for the Southern California game and would like to make it back for another home game this month.
"I'd like to get back up there, but I'm not sure with my schedule if I'll be able to make it," he said.
As for Wade's official visit plans to Notre Dame, it looks like the plan is come early next month. "I'm trying to go when Paddy goes," Wade said of hoping to make the trek the same weekend as fellow Notre Dame recruit Paddy Mullen. "Probably around the 2nd of December."