Rivers Has Irish Among His Leaders

Notre Dame's national appeal continues to grow with high school prospects. In recent years it was rare to hear Notre Dame mentioned by the top players in the Southeast. Barquell Rivers of Anson high school (Wadesboro, N.C.) is just one example of this, as the standout linebacker has the Irish among his top schools.

North Carolina has been particularly kind to Notre Dame as the best prep players in the state are mentioning the Irish as a place they'd like to play their college football. Barquell Rivers (6-1, 220-pounds) doesn't have a scholarship offer from the Irish, but he's hoping the Irish come through with one soon.

"I don't think I have it (offer) yet," Rivers replied when asked if the Irish had offered him a scholarship. "I think I'm supposed to get one this week or maybe next week. Coach Grooms spoke to one of the coaches and he said it (offer) was coach Weis's overall decision."

Rivers listed Wake Forest, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Florida, Virginia, Virginia Tech, and South Carolina as the schools that have extended him an offer. Although the Irish aren't in that group, Barquell lists them among his favorite schools.

"They're (ND) in my top six," Rivers said. "Virginia Tech, Florida, Florida State, Virginia, North Carolina State, and Notre Dame.

"I like their football tradition -- that's mainly it," Rivers said about his early interest in Notre Dame. "I'll probably come up for a junior day or a camp."

Rivers registered an eye-popping 157 tackles as a junior. He was named all-state and the defensive player of the year in his conference.

"I bring a lot of intensity and leadership," Rivers explained. "I make sure everybody knows their role before the play. I make sure I know everything going on at all the positions, so we won't have any mental letdowns on the field.

"I can cover form sideline to sideline. I'm good at tackling. I don't miss too many tackles. They (coaches) say I have pretty good speed and I'm a pretty good tackler, but I need to work more on my hands to get off blocks. "

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