Signing Day: Offense

Headlined by five-star prospect Chris Watt, Scout.com's top-ranked offensive guard in the recruiting class of 2009, Irish Eyes takes a look at the offensive players that jumped on board in Notre Dame's 2009 recruiting haul.

Charlie Weis and his staff were able to land signatures from two running backs, a receiver, two tight ends, two offensive guards, an offensive tackle and a kicker.


Cierre Wood (4-star)
(U.S. Army All-American)

Height/Weight: 6-foot, 196
Hometown: Oxnard, Calif. (Santa Clara High)
Position: Running Back

Other Schools Considered: USC, UCLA, Florida, Oregon, California, and Auburn.

Senior Year Stats:

Wood had 121 carries, for 1,526 yards (12.61 avg.) and 20 touchdowns. He also averaged 34.4 yards per kick return, and had 26 total touchdowns.


Theo Riddick (4-star)


Height/Weight: 5-10, 185
Hometown: Somerville, N.J. (Immaculata High)
Position: Running Back

Other Schools Considered: Penn State, Boston College, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Virginia and Northwestern

Head Coach's Comments: "Theo brings a lot of things to Notre Dame," Pierce Frauenheim said. "Not only his athletic ability, but many other aspects that go with that. He has tremendous leadership abilities, perseverance, his team-first attitude, and all those things make the young man a great player. He does have tremendous ability, but he's the total package.

"From a physical point of view, he's very quick, he's explosive, he can run inside and outside, his break-away speed, has tremendous vision, and good hands. He's very versatile and can play on both sides of the ball."

Senior Year Stats:

Riddick carried the ball 213 times for 1,400 yards and 15 touchdowns.


Shaquelle Evans (4-star)
(U.S. Army All-American)

(Hawaiian-Polynesian/Mainland All-Star)

Hometown: Inglewood, Calif. (Inglewood High)
Position: Wide Receiver

Other Schools Considered: USC, UCLA, California, Colorado, Ohio State and Michigan.

Assistant Coach's Comments: "I think pretty much, the kid knows what he wants," Victor Prince said. "He's not the typical guy, the typical guy that likes the crowd. He doesn't like the crowd. He doesn't like to be a follower. He's his own man. I think he's going to take that to the next level. He's a hard worker. He knew about Notre Dame's 98-percent graduation rate, and he wants to go there.

"Oh man, he's just explosive. Every play is 100 percent. I've never seen him take a play off. When the ball is in the air, he has the motto, it's ours, not anybody else's, it's ours. He's explosive, fast, he reads defenses, he taught me a lot of stuff this year."


Jake Golic (3-star)
(U.S. Army All-American)

Hometown: West Hartford, Conn. (Northwest Catholic)
Position: Tight End

Other School Considered: Connecticut.

Head Coach's Comments: "Jake's had four great years here at Northwest," Mike Tyler said. "He was a leader, he worked hard on the field and in the weight room. He's done a real solid job in the classroom. I think he's going to be a good fit for those reasons right here obviously.

"He's big. He's 6-5, 225, and maybe put on a little weight since the season ended. He has a big frame, he's going to be able to put on a lot of weight, he runs real well and makes tremendous catches. With his hands, speed is solid, and he blocks very well, so I think he'll be a very good blocking tight end, he runs routes well, he catches the ball. If he continues to work hard things will work out great for him."

Senior Year Stats:

Golic had 30 catches for 587 yards and seven touchdowns. He also had 50 tackles and five sacks


Tyler Eifert (3-star)
Hometown: Fort Wayne, Ind. (Bishop Dwenger High)
Position: Tight End

Other Schools Considered: Purdue, Vanderbilt, Wake Forest, Cincinnati, Minnesota and Indiana.

Head Coach's Comments: "I think the best way to term it, he's a football player," Chris Svarczkopf said. "He can play a number of positions, and play it hard. For someone his size, he has great speed and agility and athletic ability. We used him at a number of positions. Something a lot of high school kids can't do. He played tight end, split end, strong safety, free safety, linebacker actually, he just did a lot of things. I think probably number one, he's a competitor. He plays hard all the time.

"He's one of the finest football players we've ever had at Bishop Dwenger. I have not seen a better all-around player this year."

Senior Year Stats:

Eifert had 40 catches for 675 yards and 11 touchdowns. Defensively, he had 97 tackles and five interceptions.


Alex Bullard (4-star)

Hometown: Brentwood, Tenn. (Brentwood Academy)
Position: Guard

Other Schools Considered: Tennessee, Michigan, Alabama, Florida, South Carolina and Vanderbilt.

Head Coach's Comments: "I think Alex has great natural ability," Ralph Potter said. "He has a great flexibility. He's quick and fast. I think he has a lot of upside, has a lot of room to grow and get bigger and stronger."


Chris Watt (5-star)
(U.S. Army All-American)

Hometown: Glen Ellyn, Ill. (Glenbard West)
Position: Guard
Other Schools Considered: Ohio State, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan State and Northwestern.

Head Coach's Comments: "I think Chris' leadership ability, aside form his natural talents that he has, has set him apart from most of the kids in the state and country," Chad Hetlet said. "We'll miss that aspect of him. His playing ability allowed us to rush the ball for 4,000 yards and to reach the state semifinals.

"I think that Chris is an old-school football player that fits the mold of what Notre Dame is looking for, and will make Notre Dame fans and alumni very happy. I know he's very excited to be a part of the history and tradition at Notre Dame."


Zach Martin (3-star)
(UnderArmour All-American)

Hometown: Indianapolis, Ind. (Bishop Chatard High)
Position: Tackle

Other Schools Considered: Michigan, Purdue, Virginia, Kentucky and Indiana.

Head Coach's Comments: "When Zach entered our program as a freshman, we saw he had the fundamental skills that freshmen usually don't have," Vince Lorenzano said. "Then he coupled that with a good work ethic, and I think it showed over the four years to him culminating as one of the best players in the state, if not the best player in the state. I'd match him up against anybody in the Midwest. He was a great finisher. He proved to be as skilled and technically sound as any linemen I've ever seen, and I've heard that from college coaches as well."


Nicholas Tausch (3-star)
(Hawaiian/Polynesian-Mainland All-Star)

Hometown: Dallas, Texas (Jesuit College Prep)
Position: Kicker

Other Schools Considered: LSU, Oklahoma, Baylor, Utah and Louisiana Tech.

Head Coach's Comments: "Nick is a young man who has worked very hard to put himself in position to kick on Saturdays for the next four years and hopefully on Sunday's after that," Bob Wunderlick said. "Great kid, great family, strong leg, great kickoff height and distance, field goals, can kick off the ground with ease, has also made himself into a great punter, probably be the backup at Notre Dame.

"He's excited, we're excited, and we all think it's going to be a good fit and a good four years for him."


NOTE: Damien Thigpen may sign with the Irish today, so we've included a short profile for him as well.

Damien Thigpen (4-star)

Hometown: Manassas, Va. (Stonewall Jackson High)
Position: Running Back

Other Schools Considering: UCLA and Mississippi State.

Senior Year Stats: Thigpen played just five games and rushed for 1,000 yards and 15 touchdowns.



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