Matha Impressed with Notre Dame

Offensive lineman Dan Matha of McDowell high school (Erie, Pa.) made his first trip to South Bend this weekend for Notre Dame's junior day. He wasn't sure what to expect but by the time he left campus, the Irish were firmly entrenched as one his top schools.

Saturday was Notre Dame's second junior day of the year. The Irish staff has opted to invite only a small select group of prospects to the first two events, and Dan Matha (6-7, 310-pound) was of those players in attendance this weekend.

"The junior day was nice, it was real nice," Matha responded when asked about his visit to Notre Dame. "The campus was beautiful, one of the nicest campus' out of all the places that I've been so far. The weight room was probably the nicest that I've seen. Everything there was gorgeous. I fell in love with the place. It was my first time seeing it, but everything I saw, I liked.

"I felt real comfortable there. I talked to all the coaches. I felt like they were being upfront. I felt like they were real honest and they weren't trying to sugarcoat anything. They weren't trying to sell anything to me."

One of the coaches Matha spoke with was Irish head coach Charlie Weis.

"He pulled me up in his office during the tour," Matha said of his meeting with coach Weis. "He was upfront with me. He didn't try to sell me. He was upfront with how he operates, how things will be done there. I like how he presented himself.

"He said he wanted to offer me a scholarship, but he didn't know if he wants me at guard or tackle. He only saw highlights of me and he wanted to see game film, so Tuesday he is going to watch some film and then coach Latina was going to call me at let me know if they were going to offer."

Matha also had an opportunity to speak with offensive line coach John Latina.

"We talked quite a bit," Matha said of Latina. "He seems like he knows what he's talking about when it comes to the ‘Xs and Os' of football. He seems like a good guy. He said he was from New Castle (Pa.)"

Having a position coach from Pennsylvania will definitely help with Matha's recruitment, but a head coach that has coached in the Super Bowl has it's advantages as well.

"For sure, definitely Charlie," Matha responded when asked if he would feel comfortable playing for the Irish coaching staff. "Look at the hardware. You can't get much better than that. Plus the company that he's coached with in his NFL career, that's probably the best recruiting tool right there.

"I liked Notre Dame, but once Charlie Weis went there last year it kind of drew my interest there more. I wasn't sure if it (interest) was serious or not. Seeing it today, I love the place so…"

Along with the Irish Dan listed Pitt(offer) West Virginia(offer), Iowa, Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan as his top schools.

"I haven't gotten to visit Penn State or Ohio State yet. I'm going to Penn State March 23, when they have their junior day. Ohio State hasn't sent anything on a junior day yet, neither has Iowa, but when they do I plan on going there."


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