Khaled Holmes (6-foot-5, 290 pounds) has the size and ability to be one of the top offensive linemen in California next season. Although he's only a junior, he has already caught the attention of the Notre Dame coaches.
"They've been sending me a lot of letters," Holmes responded when asked if Notre Dame had been in contact with him. "The letters they've been sending have been great, real personable. Everyone knows it's a great program and one of the top programs that I'm thinking about.
"I'm definitely as interested in Notre Dame as much as anyone else in the country at this point. I know the football program has a great history and the academics are one of the best. The coaching staff seems to be pretty good and they're moving back to where they used to be, one of the better teams in the country."
Getting Khaled's attention is one thing, but getting him to come to South Bend will be a very difficult task considering he has connections to two of Notre Dame's biggest rivals.
"My brother went to USC, Alex Holmes," Khaled said. "My dad (Michael Holmes) played for Michigan back in the seventies.
"People seem to think that they'd have an edge, but to tell you the truth I'm trying to keep it even. When I start to look around, I'm going to look at everyone. I'm trying not to have any bias. I'm going to try to give every school as much thought as possible, but USC, Michigan and Notre Dame are probably my top three schools.
"I'm sure my coaches will help guide me through this process," Holmes explained. "I'll probably take some unofficial visits to local schools and then I'm going to choose my five visits carefully. I'm definitely going to take every official visit."
Holmes already has scholarship offers from Nebraska and Ole Miss. Along with Michigan, USC and Notre Dame, Khaled is hearing from several other top programs including most of the PAC-10. The reason all these schools are knocking on his door this early in the recruiting process is because of his athletic ability.
"I think I'm pretty athletic for a big guy," Holmes said. "My technique has been getting better. Since last year my run blocking has gotten a lot better. My pass blocking has been real solid. I went up against a few really good defensive ends this year and I think I did pretty well overall."