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Faxes in: Tuitt official, Niklas (too), Rabasa, and Atkinson

Feb 2, 2011, 11:02 AM EDT

Stephon Tuitt

Of course even the faxing of Stephon Tuitt’s letter-of-intent would be dramatic. But the prized five-star defensive end’s commitment letter arrived in the football offices after weather delayed it, and both the Irish coaching staff and all of ND Nation can breathe easy knowing that the Irish have locked in their biggest defensive prospect on their board.

Tuitt’s news wasn’t the only theater of the morning, with Brian Kelly dropping in on Jack Nolan’s live broadcast at UND.com to report that Troy Niklas also faxed in his letter-of-intent, pulling a talented player out of a USC feeder school and a prospect to Notre Dame that the Trojans coveted. Kelly pointed out the work Mike Denbrock did getting Niklas to Notre Dame, reminding Irish fans that the tight ends coach serving his second tour of duty in South Bend is the only Irish coach recruiting California, while USC has seven coaches committed to the talent-rich state.

While defensive back Jalen Brown’s official fax has been delayed thanks to inclimate weather in Texas, it appears as though the recruiting class has been finalized, with only cornerback Bennett Okotcha’s 11th hour defection to Oklahoma qualifying as bad news.

“This is probably as exact to the plan of who we needed to get in this class and we got them,” Kelly said this morning as the faxes rolled in. “When you have a plan you’re going to stick to the plan.”

Here are the faxes that are in according to Notre Dame. Brian Kelly will make his formal address at 1:00 p.m.

Faxes recently received:

Josh Atkinson, DB, Livermore, California
Jalen Brown, DB, Irving, Texas
Troy Niklas, DE, Anaheim, California
Anthony Rabasa, OLB, Miami, Florida
Stephon Tuitt, DE, Monroe, Georgia

UPDATE — 11:16 a.m. EST: Notre Dame confirms that the fax for Jalen Brown has been received.

Already received:

George Atkinson, WR, Livermore, California
Ben Councell
, OLB, Asheville, North Carolina
Davaris Daniels, WR, Vernon Hills, Illinois
Matthias Farley, DB, Charlotte, North Carolina
Jarrett Grace, LB, Cincinnati, Ohio
Conor Hanratty, OL, New Canaan, Connecticut
Eilar Hardy, DB, Pickerington, Ohio
Matthew Hegarty, OL, Aztec, New Mexico
Chase Hounshell, DE, Kirtland, Ohio
Ben Koyack, TE, Oil City, Pennsylvania
Nick Martin, OL, Indianapolis, Indiana
Cam McDaniel, RB, Coppell, Texas
Tony Springmann, DE, Fort Wayne, Indiana

Already enrolled:

Kyle Brindza, K/P, Canton, Michigan
Brad Carrico, DE, Dublin, Ohio
Everett Golson, QB, Myrtle Beach, SC
Aaron Lynch, DE, Cape Coral, FL
Ishaq Williams, DE, Brooklyn, NY

  1. mattnef - Feb 2, 2011 at 11:19 AM

    Did the snow stop Diaco from going down to get Okotcha back?
    Looking forward to watching these kids mature the next four years.
    Last I saw Irish were 30:1 for the National Championship this year, any takers?

    • tedlinko - Feb 2, 2011 at 11:48 AM

      I don’t think this year (although a BCS bowl isn’t out of the question). But give this class a year with Kelly and 2012 (and beyond) could be pretty special.

  2. ndbcs2013 - Feb 2, 2011 at 12:11 PM

    Wow, goosebumps at this defensive haul. I don’t remember anything like it at ND, and this is what championship teams start with. Really great at all three defensive levels, and most obviously on the line. Can’t wait to see these guys on the field!

    But my first impact player from this class? Kyle Brindza! I do love that we have a punter in Turk that can bench over 400 pounds or something, but Brindza will come in, take his job right away, and start booming 45 yarders with huge hang-time. That will help ND turn around the field position battles that we too often lost last year.

    Great recruiting plan and awesome execution Coach Kelly and staff!!

  3. ndbcs2013 - Feb 2, 2011 at 12:33 PM

    And I am also really looking forward to seeing some of the “redshirted” defensive freshman out on the field in 2011, especially Louis Nix, Danny Spond, Justin Utupo and Kendall Moore. With a year of strength training under Longo, these guys should all be contributors in 2011. And I think that Nix might be a HUGE defensive factor (no pun intended) this year!

  4. fitzp - Feb 2, 2011 at 12:35 PM

    Coach Kelly has do a brilliant job pulling in a class of this high quality – a big pat on the back to him and his assistants. Can’t wait for the new season to see some of these players make an impact.
    The future is bright……the future is Irish!!!

  5. bernhtp - Feb 2, 2011 at 12:38 PM

    Great class (in all senses of the word)! It will be interesting to see what rank it finally receives after the the live auction ends for some of the top holdout recruits (mostly among the SEC teams).

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