Charlie Weis and his staff have definitely not put the 2007 class to bed yet and with the ending of the dead period, one can only surmise what this rollercoaster of a recruiting year may yet hold in store for Irish recruitniks. What have you been missing by not being a member of Irish Eyes?
Chris Little, OL, 6-5, 340, Twiggs County High School, Jeffersonville, GA publicly committed to Florida State at the Army All-American football game. Just a few days after that announcement, Little de-committed to the Seminoles and pledged himself to Notre Dame. Little was the seventeenth commitment for the class of 2007.
"I talked to the [Notre Dame] coaches Wednesday night and everything went good," said Little. "I told them how I wasn't really feeling Florida State and that I wanted to come to Notre Dame. I talked to coach Lewis first and then I talked to coach Weis. They were very, very elated about it."
Even though Little had previously announced for Florida State, the Notre Dame coaching staff did not completely give up on him. A congratulatory text message from the Bill Lewis opened the door for Little to rethink his decision.
"Coach Lewis sent me a text message earlier that day," explained Little. "He just told me congratulations on that decision. He said that even though he was disappointed that he wished the best for me. He let me know that if anything changed that I would always have a place at Notre Dame. So when I got home from school I called him and told him that I had really been feeling Notre Dame when I got my offer and that I was really feeling them more after my official visit. He was really happy to hear that I still wanted to go to Notre Dame."
Little's commitment to Florida State resulted from his parents' desire for him to stay close to home. Georgia may actually have been his first choice but they had already received commitments from several offensive linemen so Florida State became the next best choice. Little was never comfortable with that decision though, so he had several sit downs with his parents about his college football career.
"After the game Saturday, I got back to my hotel room and talked to my parents," said Little. "We talked about my decision and that it is going to be my four years of school. I had to deal with it and not them. Then I talked to them again about it on Sunday and then again on Monday when we got back from Texas. At that time we decided that I needed to go where my heart felt comfortable. They said ‘all right.'"
Charlie Weis and staff were elated to hear of Little decision but perhaps even better news last week was that Jason Peters may have changed his mind about not visiting Notre Dame. Peters, DE, 6-4, 260, Catholic High School, Baton Rouge, LA had originally stated that he would not take an official visit to South Bend. The Irish staff refused to take no for an answer and now it appears as if Peters, a much-coveted defensive lineman, will find his way to the campus of Notre Dame.
"A lot has changed since then, because there is an extra weekend between signing day and my LSU visit," explained Peters. "There is still a possibility of me taking a visit to Notre Dame. I've been to Georgia Tech. I'm going to Nebraska this Friday, Florida the next weekend and LSU January 27. Then there is the possibility of visiting Notre Dame, but nothing is for sure right now."
Peters is reserving judgment on a trek north until he can meet face to face with Charlie Weis. That meeting is scheduled for this coming week. If all goes well, Peters will go ahead and schedule an official visit to Notre Dame.
"Depending on how the home visit goes with coach Weis (Jan. 17), and I expect it to go well, that will determine if I take my visit or not," said Peters. "I want to learn more about his coaching style, what he's like and who I will be playing for. It's just an important thing to go before I go into a situation."
Even if Peters does visit, the Irish face quite a struggle for his signature. Notre Dame offered late and originally recruited Peters as a defensive tackle (he wants to play defensive end).
"They are recruiting me as a defensive end, but that isn't necessarily the basis of my decision," stated Peters. "I had planned those other visits before I had talked to Notre Dame and that's why they weren't going to get a visit.
Rumors of coaching changes at Notre Dame and elsewhere have gotten Peters' attention and while that won't necessarily play a huge role in his decision, it is just another factor that the talented young lineman is taking into account. And, like any young recruit, he's looking at depth charts as well.
"There have been a lot of coaches switching jobs lately," said Peters. "I also take that into account. I'll definitely take that into account when I decide where I end up. LSU has defensive linemen coming out at the seams, but that's true at Nebraska or Florida or Georgia Tech or Notre Dame. I'll have to fight for a position, but that's healthy competition and it will just make me better."
These two summaries are just a sample of the outstanding Notre Dame recruiting information available each week on Irish Eyes.
Recruiting week in review.
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