Recruiting week in review.

After last season's 3-9 campaign, many fans wondered what kind of recruiting class the Irish could put together for 2009. Nearly everyone agreed that the on-field product would need to improve dramatically in order to lure top recruits. That has happened, both in performance and record. And the recruits have noticed.

Numerous official and unofficial visitors attended the Stanford game and watched Notre Dame post their fourth victory of the season. Most came away impressed, one so much so that he offered his verbal commitment. What have you been missing by not being a member of Irish Eyes?

Zeke Motta, S, 6-3, 225, Vero Beach High School, Vero Beach, FL committed to Notre Dame last week after taking an official visit for the Stanford game. He was absolutely overwhelmed by the experience, but wanted to wait to make his decision so that the emotion of the visit wouldn't be the deciding factor.

"I just kind of didn't want to make my decision based on emotions of when I was there," explained Motta. "I wanted to reflect on my visit. And then I came home and talked it over with my whole family and told them how I felt and they felt it was going to be a good place for me."

Motta committed to tight ends coach Bernie Parmalee on October ninth. Parmalee promptly turned Motta over to head coach Charlie Weis who welcomed the four-star safety aboard.

"I told him, coach I'm going to give you the good news," said Motta. "He was excited about that and he put me on the phone with coach Weis. I was like, hey coach I'm committing. He was excited about that and said he was looking forward to getting me up there. He told my dad he wasn't going to try and be my dad, but he'd look after me."

Motta said he considered the whole package of what Notre Dame offered in making his commitment. Still, in the end, as it is for many recruits, it just felt like the right place.

"I'd say, just aside from everything else, I fit there," Motta explained. "I fit the type of player they're looking for, and along with that I guess you could say they have a top notch academic program and I'm looking forward to helping them make it to the National Championship."

Along with Irish recruits Tyler Stockton and E.J. Banks, Motta intends to enroll early.

"I think that just getting there will benefit me academically as well as athletically," said Motta. "With that opportunity, I will be looking to graduate and maybe get my masters or something. Also, it kind of provides you the opportunity to learn the system and get adjusted to things so you'll be more comfortable when the season rolls around next year."

The Notre Dame coaching staff views Motta as a Harrison Smith-type player that can play the hybrid linebacker position currently filled by Smith.

Motta chose Notre Dame over Boston College, Florida and Auburn.

Sam Bergen, LB, 6-0, 225, East Stroudsburg High School, East Stroudsburg, PA also visited Notre Dame for the Stanford game. The 2010 linebacker recruit came away extremely impressed with his visit.

"I enjoyed the day," recounted Bergen. "From the first minute I got there they treated me well. I enjoyed the campus and the game was exciting as well."

Bergen arrived in South Bend early and got to stand on the sidelines for pre-game warm-ups and then visited the locker room after the game. He also got the added bonus of watching his brother, Max, who plays for Stanford.

"I thought it was awesome," Bergen stated. "Of course with the tradition and the history it was a big deal. They had the recruits right next to the student section. That was wild. It was memorable, especially because it was the first Notre Dame game I've been to. I've always been a fan. And to see my brother on the field at the same time; it was a special day."

Bergen's football season hasn't been quite as special. Just two games into his junior season he suffered a torn ACL that ended his season. The injury hasn't put off college recruiters, including Irish offensive line coach John Latina.

"Coach Latina told me it's not that big of a deal," said Bergen. "I'll rehab it and I'm just ready for next year. All the colleges that know about it have been positive. It's not as bad as it used to be. In six months I'll be one hundred percent. It's just a minor bump in the road. I'm confident I can overcome it."

After the game, Bergen got about thirty minutes of one on one time with coach Latina.

"Coach Latina said he's going to stop by and see me around January or prior to our off-season workouts," related Bergen. "I'll be lifting so I told him I'll be there and he said he'll stop by and see how I'm dong. I'm looking forward to that."

Bergen has planned an unofficial visit to Rutgers, but doesn't plan to take any more visits besides that. He wants to make his rehab his top priority.

These two summaries represent just a sample of the Notre Dame football recruiting information available each week on Irish Eyes. Top Stories