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Irish land elite commitment in CB Cole Luke

Nov 1, 2012, 5:35 PM EDT

Cole Luke

Notre Dame received great news this afternoon with the commitment of Arizona cornerback Cole Luke. The six-foot, 170-pound coverman chose the Irish over Texas and Oklahoma, a sentence you don’t write or hear too often.

Luke, a consensus four-star, elite-level prospect from Chandler, Arizona, has seen Notre Dame and the Irish multiple times, including once in Dublin and an official visit for Michigan, and is coached by former Irish quarterback Steve Belles. But Luke was always seen as a long-shot to the Irish, with many believing it was only a matter of time before the talented corner pledged to either Mack Brown or Bob Stoops.

But Luke pulling the trigger on his pledge to the Irish now helps put this recruiting class into its final stages, and more importantly, gets Notre Dame another cover corner in this recruiting class, a position that’s still in need of reinforcements. The Irish have been chasing a small handful of elite defensive backs with Immokalee’s Mackensie Alexander, Fresno’s L.J. Moore, Southern California’s Max Redfield, a USC commit, and Tempe’s Priest Willis getting most of the attention. That Bob Elliott was able to get Luke’s commitment gives the Irish the ability to pick and choose the final members of this recruiting class, while having a very important defensive cog in the fold.

“This is a great get for Notre Dame,” 247Sports’ Steve Wiltfong told the South Bend Tribune. “It comes at a position of need, and he’s one of the top cornerbacks in the country. Bob Elliott has been working on him for a long time, and Kerry Cooks has gotten involved, too. They really did a phenomenal job.”

Just a few days before Luke’s commitment, Belles and Luke talked with Tom Lemming to discuss his recruitment. In the segment, Belles compares Luke to former Irish All-American Todd Lyght, a projection that would have Notre Dame fans quite happy.

Luke is the Irish’s 22nd commitment in a class that will likely only include two or three more players. The commitment moved the Irish recruiting class to No. 2 in the country, as evaluated by Rivals.

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  1. dudeacow - Nov 1, 2012 at 6:01 PM

    I bet OU wishes he hadn’t taken his official visit for the OU-ND game. Now we just need another DB and maybe an offensive player. Time to start furiously recruiting Alexander and Willis and Redfield and Moore and Hawkins and Folston and Muhammad and the other Muhammad and Hargreaves (c’mon Jaylon!) and Johnson and Darby- oh wait that was last year.
    I used to be annoyed with Luke because for a while it was between UT, OU, and ND, but when USC offered they were his favorite. But they can’t have anyone else commit so HA we got him
    P.S. Luke is the punt returner for his school so we might have our two punt returners be two 4 star Arizona cornerbacks (Neal is the other).

    • dmac4real - Nov 1, 2012 at 7:47 PM

      We need a DE more than anything else—Most likely Muhammed

      Hopefully Folston is the cherry on top.

      • dudeacow - Nov 1, 2012 at 8:12 PM

        Exactly- he’s the other Muhammad I mentioned. He seems to be leaning to ND, which is great, and he is rated higher than Stephon Tuitt and Aaron Lynch!

    • dickasman - Nov 1, 2012 at 9:49 PM

      We dont need him. I am holding out my hooray for a scholarship punt return blockers. Who is the best punt return blocker? Can we give about 10 scholarships to punt return blockers? We ll be set for 4 years. Over the last 2 years, I am quite positive notre dame broke the record for most fair catches in the entire world and the universe. Somebody look it up please.

  2. bernhtp - Nov 1, 2012 at 6:39 PM

    I bet the Irish have recently gotten the attention of many recruits that are considering trying for one of the remaining slots. The conversations must be interesting.

    Anzalone is presumably visiting on Sunday. Besides continuing his recruitment, I bet the coaches go to great lengths to establish his resolve and commitment. If ND still feels he is at significant risk for another decommitment later, I imagine they will suggest he go to Florida and use the slot on one of the many others barking at the door.

    • standingdomer - Nov 1, 2012 at 7:08 PM

      Wow. awesome, awesome news. totally helps the staff’s leverage here with remaining recruits. great too to keep getting elite talent out of the southwest.

    • dickasman - Nov 1, 2012 at 9:54 PM

      Berno, did you hear about Tyron smith? Quite possibly = Anzalone in 5 yrs

      • bernhtp - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:27 AM

        You mean his crazy family situation? What do you know about Anzalone that is similar to this?

  3. fitz79 - Nov 1, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    Nothing attracts recruits like success on the field. So far this year it’s been a win – win.

    • 1historian - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:07 AM

      “Nothing attracts like success on the field.” True as far as it goes but may I add “on TV”.

  4. kiopta1 - Nov 1, 2012 at 6:56 PM

    If Alex EEs does that count for this years ships? I know we only have a handful of them left and more than a handful of worthwhile recruits (many of which who have growing interest in ND). I know we are working hard on Redfield, Folston, Muhammad, and others. Sorry if I spelled names wrong.

  5. jerseyshorendfan1 - Nov 1, 2012 at 7:45 PM

    Wow, we are sitting at 8-0 AND kicking ass in the recruiting trenches. Is this really happening? Pinch me please. I guess the tide (no pun intended) is turning in college football.

  6. kiopta1 - Nov 1, 2012 at 8:36 PM

    Tuitt and lynch were likely underrated in my opinion.

    • bernhtp - Nov 1, 2012 at 8:53 PM

      It’s hard to be considered underrated when both were 5-stars.

  7. kiopta1 - Nov 1, 2012 at 8:57 PM

    Many sites had them as 4*

    • bernhtp - Nov 1, 2012 at 9:37 PM

      Rivals had Tuitt and Lynch as the #2 and #3 DEs in the country, Rivals had Lynch with 4 stars and most of the rest had him with 5. Nevertheless, both were extremely highly regarded.

      • 1historian - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:09 AM

        Lynch was a freshman All-American. He must be kicking himself now.

      • nudeman - Nov 2, 2012 at 11:17 AM

        And he SHOULD be kicking himself.
        Right after finishing his “honey-dos” and changing diapers.

        Sorry for the snarkiness, but that was DUMB, even if ND was 4-4 now.

  8. gtizzo - Nov 1, 2012 at 9:11 PM

    The interesting thing is that all of the defensive backs in this class could sit out a year. Consider the following: Jackson and Russell with both be back at corner next season. The Irish will get back Lo Wood for some added depth. We lose Slaughter and Motta to graduation, but we would get Austin Collinsworth back. The other safety slot could be field by Shumate or Farley. The Irish secondary could be solid next season even if it might still be considered thin as far as depth.

  9. kiopta1 - Nov 1, 2012 at 9:48 PM

    Dude I don’t really care if your wrong or not…it’s the past and pointless. It’s not like anyone expects the Spanish Inquisition.

    • ndbcs2013 - Nov 1, 2012 at 11:08 PM

      Um, didn’t you bring the topic up, conquistador?

      • dickasman - Nov 2, 2012 at 12:10 AM

        Lololol at conquistador! You seem like my kinda guy

  10. dickasman - Nov 1, 2012 at 9:51 PM

    Guys since we have been playing very well,I am quite happy to report that I no longer have to sit on the toilet straining multiple hemorrhoids over recruiting. You win they come, I mean the recruits of course! ;-)

    • 1historian - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:10 AM

      thanks for clearing that up

      • jerseyshorendfan1 - Nov 2, 2012 at 6:37 PM

        I hope they cleared up. I mean the hemorrhoids of course!

    • dickasman - Nov 3, 2012 at 12:06 AM

      Naw I had to have hemorrhoidectomy to get them removed for my ladies because they like to ummmm you knoe, but holy shnikes worst pain ever! I do not recommend hemorrhoidectomy guys.

  11. irishaggie - Nov 1, 2012 at 10:42 PM

    If we get Muhammad and Redfield that would put us at 24 commits. How would our scholarships work out. Who would we cut. If Eifert, Wood, Watt, and Martin were to come back who do we cut? Could i get some help or opinions because i came up with 89 scholarship players if all seniors with one year of eligibility left come back. We could cut Stockton and Golic, but then who?What do we do then?

    • ndbcs2013 - Nov 1, 2012 at 11:12 PM

      Golic has started every game! No chance he does not get a fifth year IMO.

      • irishaggie - Nov 1, 2012 at 11:51 PM

        I meant TE Jake Golic, Mike Golic’s eligibility will be done after this season.

      • ndbcs2013 - Nov 2, 2012 at 12:21 AM

        My bad. Sad, but I totally forgot about poor Jake. And Mike is already using his 5th year, right? I gotta start laying off the hard stuff…

      • irishaggie - Nov 2, 2012 at 1:01 AM

        ya Jake has been pretty content with getting free education and keeping the gold helmet scratch-less. yep mike is using his 5th now.

    • dmac4real - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:15 AM

      Eifert is gone.

      Well cut Stockton, Golic, Heggie, Tausch, and maybe one of the Carlo/Fox depending on the recruit.

      This is most peoples guess.

      • bernhtp - Nov 2, 2012 at 10:51 AM

        It will be hard not to keep both Carlo and Fox. Both are playing very well.

  12. fitz79 - Nov 1, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    Would Lynch be eligible to play the rest of this season if he transfers back to ND? ;)

    • dickasman - Nov 2, 2012 at 12:12 AM

      Do we have scholarship to give to his baby mama? Any opening on the cheer leading squad? I’d take his a$$ back in a heartbeat.

      • dickasman - Nov 2, 2012 at 12:13 AM

        I am trying my hardest to stay straight n narrow but take a$$ back in didn’t sound right, oh Jesus forget it

  13. jerseyshorendfan1 - Nov 1, 2012 at 11:01 PM

    You really think Eifert and Wood would come back, or that Lynch would transfer back in? None of that’s happening.

    • bernhtp - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:35 AM

      Eifert is definitely GG – graduating and gone. Wood might come back, but it’s not certain. I think it depends on his projected draft status. If he stayed, he would still split reps with GA3 and Carlisle, and maybe even one of the underclassmen.

  14. nudeman - Nov 1, 2012 at 11:08 PM

    I have a friend (a UM fan) who I work with whose son plays for the local Notre Dame HS. I asked him today about Hamilton HS (Luke’s HS) and he said it’s an outrageous program where top notch kids wait 3 years just to hope to start in the senior yr.

    He knows about Luke, raves about him.

    This sounds good.

    • dickasman - Nov 2, 2012 at 12:15 AM

      Nude, hows his faircatching ability? find out if he’s got what it takes to be the best fair catcher in the world cuz that’s what it would be.

      • ctfivula - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:00 AM

        you’re killin it today, I think you made a comment on every comment so far keep em coming

      • nudeman - Nov 2, 2012 at 11:19 AM

        Agree … dickasman is EN FUEGO!!!

    • bernhtp - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:51 AM

      Evidence is increasing that Kelly and staff are very good at talent evaluation – better than the rating services. Matthias Farley is the perfect example, who was a 3-star athlete without a national ranking.

      Given that there are likely only a couple of slots left and the recruit interest in Notre Dame must now be exploding, the behind-the-scenes conversations must be really interesting both between the staff on who to take and with the recruits.

    • paiten34 - Nov 4, 2012 at 5:58 AM

      Nude,

      Hamilton has the best football program in the state with Luke as one of the top players on their team. I know the young man personally and have nothing but good things to say. He is a confident player who is a lock down corner. Hamilton does a very good job building good players from a talent rich program.

      Hamilton has a football academy that runs all year round to teach their young players how to maximize their talent.

  15. drdannddad - Nov 2, 2012 at 6:53 AM

    I give Kelly a lot of credit for the adjustments he has made as a coach. His teams used to be built around a high-octane offense that was rarely on the field {i.e., dead last in time of possession during several seasons}. At Notre Dame, he wisely concluded that defense was the key to success, along with a clock-eating offense. Sadly, this is precisely the adjustment that Charlie couldn’t or wouldn’t make.

    • bernhtp - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:59 AM

      As I said over a year ago, Kelly seems to be a very thoughtful guy. He makes mistakes, but rarely the same one twice. He learns, adapts and progresses.

  16. bernhtp - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    Cole should get “Hand” as a nickname. It not only fits with his position, but he could also become Cole “Hand” Luke.

    • dickasman - Nov 2, 2012 at 12:12 PM

      Lets hope he doesn’t drop bunch of fair catches n become ” cold hand Luke”

  17. dmacirish - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:03 AM

    okay seeing that no one else has said it. my bet is that he comes to notre dame and the first thing that coach kelly says to him is “i would love to have you as a defensive back and punt returner. oh yeah and by the way, i want you to place the ball on the BACK line of the end zone because if i see any shenanigans from you dropping the ball before you cross the goal line again i will put a boot up your ass.”

    please note 0:54 of the video they put out of him. also please note 0:57 where the player on his own team picks up the ball to actually take it all the way into the endzone. DeSean Jackson anyone.

    • nolanwiffle - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:36 AM

      I’m guessing you didn’t see the ref at the goal line signal the touchdown.

  18. ctfivula - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:06 AM

    Just heard on espn Graham, Streets and Pitts were charged with assault. I wonder if they will play on Sat? Graham and Streets are there best offensive players RB and WR. This game could get real ugly without there two best offensive players.

  19. washhtsirishlover - Nov 2, 2012 at 11:39 AM

    Great news. A Muhammad sounds like a silent verbal, so does that leave us with two more slots open? If so, more defense!!!! A combo of Willis, Alexander, Redfield or Isaac Saviinea. Assuming we can keep AAnzalone. We have lots of weapons on offense. If we get some of these targets, then we can move Russell back to offense, add Amir Carlyle that’s like getting two more weapons back. No DT’s on the horizon? BK will have to target that big time next year.

    • ohioirish - Nov 2, 2012 at 2:16 PM

      I don’t see them moving Russell back to RB. The RB stable is quite full with Wood(possibly), GA3, Carlyle, McDaniel, and Mahone. BK will keep him at corner to keep him on the field. We could also get Jamoris Slaughter back at Safety, depending his NCAA appeal.

    • jerseyshorendfan1 - Nov 2, 2012 at 6:49 PM

      Did he give his silent verbal over a meal of jumbo shrimp?

  20. 4beav - Nov 2, 2012 at 2:26 PM

    No way we move Russell back. He’s an all amaerican in the making.

    • washhtsirishlover - Nov 2, 2012 at 6:07 PM

      How is constantly playing off the WR’s by 10 yards an all-american in the making? Heck, even his tackling is suspect. Russell might be that homerun hitter we need, while I know GAIII is a home run hitter, he’s straight line speed, Russell might be the shifty speed to make a tackler miss. With the incoming CB’s Russell is expendable. He could go back eventually as a back up plan, just like this year.

      • jmfinsd - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:13 PM

        Not sure what you’re watching. Russell plays off because of the scheme, and then he makes the tackle. When he’s in tight man-to-man (granted, it’s rare), he’s played very well. Suspect tackling? He’s a very good tackler. 38 tackles, 24 solo, 2 for loss, .5 sacks, 1 INT. I’d like to see the skill set on the guy that sends Russell back to offense. With Kely’s ability to evaluate talent, I won’t rule out anything, but I highly doubt a change.

  21. 4beav - Nov 2, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    American typo

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