Charlie Weis made a visit to Golden Tate (6-foot-0, 180 pound) today. This visit wasn't to make a sales pitch to the standout athlete, instead the Irish head coach was in town to attend Tate's college selection press conference.
"I committed last week and just wanted to wait to announce until coach Weis came down to my school," Tate said when asked about his commitment. "After being there for two days I just felt at home. They guys treated me well. The coaches took care of me and I think I have a chance to come in there and make an impact.
"Coach Weis believes in playing the best. He puts his freshmen where they can get on the field and get some playing time early. Recruiters say what they think you want to hear, but I feel like I can come in and do some things for my new home – the Irish.
"I talked to coach Minter," Tate said. "I talked to coach Oliver, and coach Haywood. I pretty much talked to all the coaches. As a group they were all amazing guys. They had integrity, great character; they didn't talk down about any college and they just told me like it was. They didn't say, "You're definitely going to play." They said if I work hard, I'd get a chance to play. I liked them a lot.
"The academics are great. If football doesn't work out I will have a great education and degree.
"The tradition overall was outstanding," Tate recalled. "I was actually surprised by it even though people told me how big it was. I kind of thought every school has tradition, but when I got there I was like, "Whoa." I just looked around and thought, "Wow, this place is nice." I felt pretty much at home.
"My first impression of Notre Dame was, "Wow, it's cold." You can get over that though. You can adjust. The have a nice in-door facility so we'll practice in there, but other than that I'm not too worried about it.
"The locker room is really nice. I took a picture with the "Play Like a Champion" sign. The facilities were amazing. It was pretty nice.
Notre Dame didn't offer Tate his scholarship until late November. The Irish were waiting on a test score and once they received it the offer went out.
"I was worried about my test score, but once I overcame that it was all good," Tate explained. "I got a 26 on the ACT. I was expecting the worst, but hoping for the best. I worked really hard and put a lot of time into studying for it. I don't think anyone has an idea of how hard I worked.
"The baseball coach said that I had a chance to come in and compete for the starting spot in centerfield. So I'll pretty much have my cake and be eating it too"