Sep 19, 2011, 8:58 PM EDT
With the class of 2013 getting its first commitment in offensive lineman Steve Elmers, the remaining seats in the class of 2012 continue to fill up, with South Carolina wide receiver Chris Brown committing to the Irish after an official visit to Notre Dame for the Michigan State game. The six-foot-two wide receiver is the 15th commitment in the 2012 class, joining Justin Ferguson and Deontay Greenberry as projected wide receivers in the class.
Brown’s name came out of the blue for many recruitniks, but he was a pretty coveted recruit with a reported 17 offers from schools like Arkansas, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia Tech and others. While Brown doesn’t have listed offers from Alabama or LSU, he just took an official visit to Tuscaloosa and had another scheduled to Baton Rouge, so he certainly profiles as an SEC caliber athlete.
Perhaps one of the most intriguing parts of Brown’s commitment is his track and field prowess. Brown reportedly has the best two posted triple-jumps in the country this year for a high school athlete, and befriended fellow Irish recruit Ronald Darby in Puerto Rico at an international track meet. That type of athleticism is something Kelly was hoping to upgrade in this recruiting class, and the combination of Brown’s height and explosive leaping ability seem to fit perfectly with those goals.
With 15 commitments in the fold and three players that profile at wide receiver, there’s still room for more skill players but the bus is filling quickly. News that highly touted blue-chipper athlete Nelson Agholor is scheduled for an official visit for the Air Force game means that the Irish won’t stop chasing elite players, with Notre Dame still pursuing other blue-chippers at the position as well, including Dorial Green-Beckham, Ian Thomas and Cyrus Jones.
With Michael Floyd graduating and decisions to be made on guys like John Goodman and Deion Walker — not to mention seniors Robert Blanton, Gary Gray, and Harrison Smith exiting the secondary after this season, there’ll be plenty of room for skill recruits to come on board. It’ll just be up to Kelly and his coaching staff to find the best place for them.
With Brown, the Irish have a guy that immediately upgrades the athleticism of either the receiving corps or secondary and brings another outside receiver into the fold, with the slot already filled with guys like Robby Toma, Theo Riddick and Matthias Farley.
Brown was the Gatorade South Carolina boys track & field athlete of the year in 2011. He hasn’t played since the second week of the season because of a broken collarbone.