Notre Dame has a lot of national appeal, but no one walks into Texas and pulls the top players out of state without a lot of work. Running back Cyrus Gray (6-foot-0. 188 pounds) is one of the top juniors in Texas and it appears the Irish have his attention.
"I'm very interested in Notre Dame," Gray replied when asked if Notre Dame had been in contact with him. "I haven't talked to their coaches yet, but my coach told me that they asked for my transcripts and my highlight tape, so I'm looking forward to hearing more from them.
"It's a good school and a good place to play football. I like the tradition. It would be great to play under coach Weis and to play for a great program. I watched them play this year. I like Darius Walker and how they use him.
"You know you have to bring it when you play at Notre Dame. It's something to look forward to," Gray added.
As a sophomore Gray had 77 carries for 505 yards and five touchdowns. He completed two halfback passes, both for touchdowns that combined for over 120 yards. Last season Gray tallied 220 carries for 1, 510 yards and 31 rushing touchdowns. He added 38 receptions for 428 yards and two touchdowns. He had over 400 yards in punt returns with four touchdowns.
"I played five different positions this year," Gray said "I started playing quarterback in the third game, because our quarterback got hurt. I had never played quarterback before, so I had to use my skills and just run the ball. I only threw the ball a few times. Whenever I lined up as quarterback I either ran it or gave it to the running back.
"When our quarterback got healthy I stayed at quarterback, or we'd split time. People said the way we ended up running the offense was like Florida with Tim Tebow. That's basically how things were.
"It was a big year and big things happened and it's coming out very good" Gray said, "I'm in Texas 5A football and I'm playing the best schools and the best athletes. I feel my best position is running back and that's where the scouts are looking at me to play. I believe that's where I'll play at the next level. I just need to work on getting bigger and stronger right now. Nobody is recruiting me for defense. Everyone knows that I'm going to be playing running back. I think I'm solid at running back, so I don't think I'll be changing positions.
"I'm more of a speed back than anything, but it just depends on what I need to do. If I need to run somebody over I'll do that. I have great hands. I caught a lot of passes this year. People compare me to a lot of different athletes because I'm versatile and bring a lot of things to the table. Some people say that I remind them of Adrian Peterson."
Like Peterson, Gray will have plenty of options when he makes his decision.
"Texas A&M, Texas, Texas Tech, SMU, Baylor, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Tulsa, Notre Dame and Alabama," Gray listed as the schools showing him the most attention. "I'm hearing from a lot of big schools, but I'm just waiting to see what I hear right now and see who is going to offer me.
"I have seven offers; Texas A&M, Oklahoma State, Oklahoma, SMU, Baylor, Arizona, and Tulsa. I don't have any favorites right now. I'm going to wait until the end of spring to narrow down my schools, but right now I'm interested in everyone that is interested in me. I want to give everyone a shot."
Gray recently made a trip to Austin for a Texas junior day. Notre Dame is hosting their second junior day in a couple weeks and Gray is making plans to be there.
"I haven't had a chance to talk to the [Notre Dame] coaches, but I'm hoping to soon. I'm trying to go to their junior day March 4. I might have a conflict with track, but right now I'm trying to get things worked out."
Gray participates in the 100M, the 4X100M and the 4X200M in track. His fastest 100 meter time is 10.53 seconds.
Gray reported a 3.2 g.p.a.