Irish Offer Wakes Up Gardner

With school cancelled on Friday morning because of terrible weather, Inkster (Mich.) High quarterback Devin Gardner was sleeping in.

Or at least he was trying to.

His cell phone went off at about 9 a.m., and the caller I.D. read, Greg Carter, Devin Gardner's Inkster High head coach.

Gardner, a top-100 recruit, and the top-ranked player in the state of Michigan by Scout.com, debated answering his phone.

He's glad he did.

Carter told his 6-foot-4, 200-pound quarterback to get in touch with Notre Dame.

Still groggy, Gardner gave Irish assistant coach Corwin Brown a call.

"He asked me how I was doing, and how my brother and family was doing," Gardner said. "He told me they wanted to offer me, and coach (Charlie) Weis wanted to talk to me for himself."

Brown handed the phone over to Weis, and Gardner was now fully awake and excited.

"He said they want to offer me a full ride and everything, and they were a little behind on recruiting and stuff because he had been getting surgeries and all that stuff," Gardner said.

"He just said he had been on pain killers a lot. He broke his right knee and tore some ligaments in his left knee, and that's pretty bad."

This past season, Gardner tossed 26 touchdown passes, and ran for 22 more scores, leading Inkster to the state championship game. Notre Dame is his 11th scholarship offer. Places like Michigan, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Nebraska and Cincinnati have also stepped to the table with full-rides.

"It's really the same as everyone else," Gardner said of his Notre Dame offer. "I just have to take it slow because I'm not really into it right now, focusing on basketball and staying in the books."

Gardner said he hopes to take a few of his official visits before making a college decision, but he realizes quarterbacks sometimes commit earlier than players of other positions. He added you don't get the full effect of the school on an unofficial, and would like to soak in some different atmospheres while on an official trip.

"I'm probably going to have to wait, unless something spectacular happens or something," Gardner said.

Gardner has visited several college campus unofficially, including Notre Dame's twice. He was in South Bend for camp over the summer, and also visited for the Michigan game this past fall.

"They have a nice pro-style system, and the game atmosphere is real live too," Gardner said. "They have a real nice campus, and they have real good academics."

Gardner could return to Notre Dame for the Irish's junior day on the 24th of this month.

"I don't know because Ohio State's junior day is on the 25th," Gardner said. "I'm going to talk to my brother and family and everything, and see which one is more convenient, and that's the one I'm going to go too."


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