Russell Ellington had 818 yards receiving and eight touchdowns last season. He also had 35 tackles and four interceptions, one he returned 101 yards for a touchdown. Ellington reports scholarship offers from Louisville, Western Michigan and Eastern Illinois. He was talking with Iowa, Purdue, Illinois and Wisconsin before his highlight film went out, but since, he said he has heard from the rest of the Big 10 programs, North Carolina State, North Carolina, Virginia and Oklahoma State. Several other schools have been to the school.
"Most of the Big Ten schools are recruiting me to play outside linebacker or strong safety," the 6-foot-3, 215-pound Ellington said. "North Carolina State, North Carolina, Oklahoma State and Virginia want me to play receiver."
Notre Dame would like to get a look at Ellington at strong safety. Ianello shot him a text making sure he is coming to Notre Dame's Senior Elite camp on June 2. Ellington will be there with teammate Supo Sanni, a 6-foot-4, 190-pound receiver the Irish have shown recent interest in.
Ellington began the season last fall as a strong safety, but he moved to outside linebacker because of an injury to a teammate.
"Hopefully I leave there with an offer," Ellington said. "They want to see me work out at strong safety, see if I can defend. Hopefully I can go to the camp and prove that I can play defensive back as well."
The trip to South Bend for camp will be Ellington's second visit to the campus. He made it in for one of Notre Dame's junior days.
"It was nice, the facilities are like the best I've seen," Ellington said. He has made unofficial visits to Iowa, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Purdue and Minnesota. "It's a nice campus. The history of the campus, I was fascinated by that.
"I think everybody knows about the football tradition, and I know it's very hard to get into the school. A great education."
Education is something Ellington has begun to take seriously. After slacking off in the classroom for two years, he has put in the time in raising his GPA.
"I have a 2.3 right now," Ellington said. "It should be a 2.5 or 2.6 after this quarter."
Ellington scored a 23 on his ACT and has talked to Ianello about his grades and what he has to do to be eligible for a Notre Dame offer.
"They came and saw my third quarter grades and my mid-fourth quarter grades, and they saw that I was pulling them up," Ellington explained. They told me to make sure I qualify this semester and make sure I keep up the work and not let my grades drop."
Ellington ran a 4.52 40-yard dash at a recent Nike Combine. He reports a bench press of 285 pounds.
Interested in everybody, Ellington is also going to attend a Michigan Camp this summer and lists them and Notre Dame as his two favorites.
"I like the tradition of the schools, and I've always wanted to play for Notre Dame or Michigan," Ellington stated.
Now that the two schools have Ellington's film, maybe he will get the opportunity to play for both.