Fauria Won't Be Changing His Mind

Notre Dame locked up its tight end recruiting early on when the Irish received commitments from Kyle Rudolph and Joseph Fauria. Many expected Rudolph to commit when he did, but Fauria from Crespi Carmelite High School (Encino, CA) surprised a lot of people when he pledged to coach Weis on his trip to the spring game.

Crespi High School head football coach Jeremiah Ross was busy handling college coaches during the May evaluation period, although there weren't many coaches calling on his star tight end. Joseph Fauria (6-foot-7, 250 pounds) took his name off recruiting boards when he committed to Notre Dame in April.

"Recruiting fell off like crazy after I committed, although I did get two offers after I committed, Cal and Michigan State," Fauria responded when asked about amount of attention he received in May. "The day that I came back after I committed, I sat down and talked to my coach one-on-one. He asked me what I wanted to do with all the coaches that were calling. I told him to let them know that I was a strong verbal commitment and that I didn't want to be recruited and I didn't want to have schools trying to change my mind.

"My coach was kind of surprised I committed so quickly. He knows that I have always been a Notre Dame fan and that I've always wanted to go there, but he was surprised that it did happen that quick. We had talked before and I had told him that I was going to wait until about August before I did anything. As it was, I made a spur of the moment decision and he agreed with it."

Although the Notre Dame staff has a commitment from Fauria, they have been staying in contact.

"I'm keeping in touch with coach Polian, coach Weis and coach Parmalee,' Fauria said. "They're not hassling me, because they know that I have a life. They know that recruiting was pretty hectic, so they're keeping in casual contact. They certainly haven't forgotten about me though. They're doing a good job of staying in touch.

"Dayne [Crist] and I try to keep in touch. We talked about throwing together, but we're probably going to wait after our seasons. I really don't want him to know how I run my routes and he really doesn't want me to know how he throws. Even though we committed to Notre Dame, we still have another season to go, and our schools are still bitter rivals."

With recruiting out of the way, Fauria can concentrate on improving his game. Like a number of other elite prospects, Joseph is working with a personal trainer.

"I have a personal trainer that used to be an NFL trainer," Fauria explained. "My quarterback, Kevin Prince, and I will start going there now that summer is here. I'll do full body work outs. I've been trying to get some muscle on me, before next season. I want to work on my speed also.

"The Notre Dame coaches really haven't told me what I need to concentrate on. I know what I have to do. I have people around me that know what I need to work on. Right now I'm working on getting better overall. I have to work on my core, lower body, upper body. I need to work on my route ruing and my blocking. That's all a package. I know when I get to Notre Dame that they're going to help me work on it as well.

"Last Saturday we won the seven-on-seven tournament at the College of the Canyons," Fauria said. "I think there were about 16 teams in the tournament. I had a big day. I was a little rusty warming up and then ended up playing really well. On the first play we ran, I did an out route. I laid out for it and caught it. That got everyone pumped up. I had some other good catches, and overall our team looks really good. We're working on coming together so that we have a good season."

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