Irish Find Their Speed

Notre Dame is looking to add some speed to the wide receiver corps in the 2008 recruiting class. The question for recruiting fans wasn't whether the Irish needed a speed receiver. The question was which recruit would receive the scholarship offer. As it turns out, A.J. Alexander from Altoona Area High School (Altoona, Pa.) is the guy.

The Notre Dame coaching staff will likely identify other prospects that fit the profile of a speed receiver, but for now A.J. Alexander (5-foot-10, 190 pounds) is the recruit the staff will target.

"I spoke with coach Weis yesterday and he said that he watched my tape," Alexander recalled of the conversation with the Notre Dame head coach. "He asked me how my day was going and I said, ‘Alright.' Then he asked me what position I wanted to play in college. I told him I wanted to play running back or receiver.

"Then he said that he had two more questions. He asked, ‘Do you want a scholarship?' I said, ‘Yeah.' He said with my speed I that was what they're looking for on offense. Then he said, ‘I have this paper in front of me. I guess I can send it out to you then.' Then he asked me, "How is your day now?" I told him that it was a lot better.

"It's crazy because I had gotten three other offers that day. I got Florida State, Boston College and Virginia," Alexander said.

Before the flood gates opened on Tuesday, Alexander already owned scholarship offers from Virginia Tech, Rutgers, Penn State, Pitt, Louisville, Georgia, Maryland and Iowa. Notre Dame will need to put forth a strong recruiting effort in order to land A.J. Luckily the Irish already have one of their top recruiters on the job.

"I talk to the coachES at a lot and the places," Alexander explained. "I'll probably go where I like the coaches the best, even though I've never seen them or I don't know much about them.

"I talk to coach Latina all the time. He's a cool dude. [Notre Dame] is one of my top schools. I talk to coach Latina a lot or I'll text him. He's from Pittsburgh.

"I've always liked Florida State," Alexander said. "Coach [Rick] Trickett from West Virginia is down there now. I was close to him when he was at West Virginia, so I'd like to check them out."

Alexander intended on visiting Notre Dame this weekend for the junior day, but those plans feel through. A.J. does want to get a look at the Notre Dame campus, so he'll eventually make it over.

"I was supposed to go [to the junior day], but I'm not going to be able to make it. I'll try to get over there this summer," Alexander said. "I'll probably go to a couple junior days around here, and then during the summer I'll hit some places. After that I'll decide on where to take my official visits. I'm not going to take an official to Penn State or Pitt because it's right around here.

"I'm not sure I'll go to any combines, because my name is already out there, but I might go there just to do the one-on-ones."

Last season Alexander played quarterback and rushed for approximately 1,000 yards on 80 attempts with 15 touchdowns. He passed for nearly 400 yards. He returned four kick-offs for touchdowns. Top Stories