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Matthias Farley is the fourth to join the 2011 recruiting class

Apr 21, 2010, 12:40 PM EDT

North Carolina safety Matthias Farley is the fourth player to verbally commit to Brian Kelly and the Fighting Irish. He did so just 24 hours after visiting campus, adding a much needed defensive back to the recruiting mix.

Recruiting guru Tom Lemming ranks Farley as the best safety in North Carolina, and Farley had offers from in-state schools North Carolina, NC State, and Duke, to go along with offers from UCLA, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Maryland among others.

While he’s coming into South Bend as a cornerback or safety, Farley’s more of a pure athlete. Last season — his first year playing organized football after a soccer career — Farley made 29 catches for 849 yards and 12 touchdowns. He also chipped in three interceptions, returning one of them for a score.

Farley’s 6-foot-1, giving him elite size as a corner if he can stick there, and more than capable size as a safety as well. He also fits perfectly into the mold of a skill athlete, something Kelly and staff have aimed to get onto campus, before developing those athletes into a specific position player. Before his career is over, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Farley on the offensive side of the ball as well.

“There is no place I’d rather be from a school standpoint and a football standpoint,” Farley told

He was recruited by defensive line coach Mike Elston as well as recruiting coordinator Chuck Martin.

  1. borromini - Apr 21, 2010 at 3:22 PM

    This guy is NR by Scouts and the #1 safety by Lemmings…a weird disparity. He’ll likely now get more attention from the other services during his upcoming senior year. Will be interesting to see where he ends up in rankings as we near the end of the season.

  2. E-Man - Apr 21, 2010 at 4:17 PM

    He’s only played one year of organized football. Really? This is someone to get excited about Tom Lemming??!!
    On the other hand, he’s an all star soccer player, which draws parallels to Shane Walton. He’s also got a pretty good offer list to date. Maybe there’s something there…

  3. Rick Shalaby - Apr 22, 2010 at 4:38 PM

    He runs a 4.3-4.4 40 and he’s 195 pounds…you can’t teach speed.
    There was another NC athlete that only played 1 year at at the Varsity level and he became Air Jordan.

  4. E-Man - Apr 23, 2010 at 2:43 PM

    Ricky –
    Don’t quote me 40 times. They’re completely fradulent unless you are testing all players the same, and electronically a-la The Combine. They are especially, notoriously, fraudlent when it comes from a HS coach who’s reporting to a recruit-nik site. Film, film, film.
    My “No Irrelavent Comments” App redacted the rest of your post. Sorry if I missed something that you felt was insightful.

  5. david - Apr 25, 2010 at 8:41 PM

    Folks, I’ve seen Farley play a lot and I can vouch for him. The guy is stud athlete, had great hands, and knows his way around the field incredibly well for a guy who never played previously.
    He’ll be a player. No one – and I mean no one – could run with him last year. he ran by everyone and more than 3/4 of his TDs came because he was just faster and stronger than everyone else. The route running will improve with more work.
    Unfortunately, this year his school probably won’t have much of a QB as last year’s guy graduated. You will probably see him running with it more, and playing a lot more D.
    His open field tackling improved dramatically as the year went on and he packs a seriously wallop when he comes up.
    This is a great find for ND.

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