Hafis Williams (6-4, 290 pounds) recently made a trip to Notre Dame for the annual Blue-Gold game to see what the Notre Dame program offered.
"I loved it. It felt like home," Williams responded when asked about his visit to Notre Dame. "I felt the tradition of the school and the dedication of the fans. I like the coaches. They're all upbeat.
"I loved the campus. The quad looked like fun. There were a bunch of kids hanging out having fun. The students I met all seemed nice and humble. I thought the [campus] atmosphere was great. I got to see the fans and how much they love the tradition. I really liked to see how dedicated the fans were.
Notre Dame set an all-time attendance record for the spring game. After watching the game Hafis was invited to join the team in the locker room.
"When I went into the locker room after the game I saw the tunnel and then saw the ‘Play Like A Champion Today' sign," Williams said. "I know that means so much for the history of the school. I've always wanted to see that sign. You could just feel tradition and when you saw the tunnel and started walking down it, that's when I felt that everything went into perspective.
"I spoke with coach Weis while we were in the locker room. He knows my coach and he and my coach have the same personality. They're your best friend and buddy-buddy one day and then once you step onto the field it's all business. That's the way I want to be coached. I want to know what I need to do and I'll do it like that.
"When I spoke with coach Brown he got me all excited to play a game, but there wasn't a game to play. I could definitely play for him. He was asking me when we were walking around campus if I could see myself going to school there and I said, ‘ Yeah, definitely.'
Williams doesn't have any additional visits planned this spring. He doesn't have a favorite at this time, but five schools have edged into the lead.
"I guess Notre Dame, Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers and Virginia," Williams replied when asked his top five colleges. "I'll probably sit down with my coach and my grandmother and narrow things down. I'll probably make a decision in the summer or by the first week of school. I have to take so much in right now. I'm going to look at everything and see what school is best for me."