Page Was "Blown Away"

It was Notre Dame Stadium. It was the facilities. It was the locker room, the campus, getting former Heisman Trophy winner Tim Brown's autograph on the sideline, meeting a big-wig from NBC and just about everything else. A.C. Flora four-star offensive lineman Kenneth Page said it crossed his mind for a second about pulling a Michael Floyd and verbally committing to Notre Dame.

"I'm not going to lie it did," the 6-foot-4, 290-pound Page said. Notre Dame is recruiting him as a guard. "I was blown away by the visit."

Page was one of a few high-profile senior recruits in South Bend for the Irish-USC game this weekend, joining Minnesota receiver Michael Floyd who pledged Notre Dame, offensive lineman Trevor Robinson from Nebraska and running back Jonas Gray from Michigan. The first thing the Columbia, S.C. product highlighted about his official visit wasn't any of the above mentioned things.

"What blew me away was the academics and the academic support system," Page said. He has a 3.8 GPA and could graduate early if he wants or needs to.

"Despite the loss, it was still a good game to me. The fans, they have great fan support. I loved the way they incorporate the football team with all the other students. I like the attention you can get at Notre Dame having a small number of students."

"I met with the entire coaching staff. I spent a lot of time with (offensive line) coach (John) Latina. He was showing me how I fit in with their schemes and what they're doing. I spent some time with (defensive backs) coach (Bill) Lewis my recruiting coach."

Page made the trip with his parents and A.C. Flora assistant coach James Sharper, the cousin of NFL players Jamie and Darren Shaper. He stayed with Irish freshman and fellow Columbia product Gary Gray, and was so excited about his visit, he called A.C. Flora head coach Robin Bacon once Friday night and then again Saturday morning to update him.

"I talked to him Friday night and my coach James Sharper, my assistant coach, they were overwhelmed," Bacon said. "They said it was unbelievable. Far exceeded anything they could imagine. It was phenomenal.

"Mom and Dad went up there. (Irish head) coach Weis and coach Lewis wanted to get both parents up there and they are very supportive and close. From what I got from Kenneth and coach Sharper it was phenomenal. I think Kenneth, he's visited so many schools and different things, this was his first official visit and being such a big game and everything else, he called me Friday night and turned around and called me Saturday morning and said coach I wish you were with me. This is unbelievable."

Bacon also talked to Sharper.

"I know one thing, coach Sharper said to me, coach if I was Kenneth I'd be done," Bacon said. "I would tell him, Kenneth can graduate early if he wants to, I'll be here the next day."

Stuck at the airport in Detroit late Sunday night, Page said he wasn't sure when he'll announce his decision. It could be awhile. He has also seen games at Clemson, South Carolina, Alabama, North Carolina and Georgia Tech this year. He has set up for the near future an official visit for Clemson and is in the process of doing so with South Carolina.

Bacon said that Latina plans on attending Page's game this coming Friday. Bacon and Latina are friends dating back to Latina's days at Clemson.

Notre Dame's struggles this season aren't a factor into Page's decision. He feels that he could come in and compete for a job as a true freshman. As far as Notre Dame possibly bringing in the nation's top recruiting class, "that definitely helps the situation out," Page stated.

"I had a great weekend."


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