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Spot opens in ’13 class as Mattingly officially decommits

Dec 6, 2012, 3:04 PM EDT

Danny Mattingly

In one of the worst kept recruiting secrets out there, outside linebacker Danny Mattingly has opened up his recruitment, talking openly about the decision for the first time. Notre Dame’s recruiting class is now officially at 21, giving the team some breathing room as it continues to chase some high profile targets still left on their recruiting board.

Mattingly spoke with about his decision to open things back up, a recruitment that’ll now include official visits to Miami, Oregon, UCLA, Washington and Arizona State.

“I don’t have any favorites or anything like that,” Mattingly told Rivals. “Those are the schools I’m looking at and I’m going to finish my trips, review everything and see what I think.”

Mattingly has always been an intriguing athlete, and at 6-foot-5, 225-pounds, he’s got the size to grow into a prototype edge player, or find himself at tight end. Yet after an early commitment to Notre Dame, the Spokane native seemed uncomfortable staying committed to the Irish without taking other official visits.

With Notre Dame in a unique position to be incredibly selective in their current recruiting class, the decision to take visits likely turned that commitment into a situation where both parties started looking around. While Mattingly only addressed the issue recently, it was believed by many that Notre Dame had already moved on, with Jason Sapp of noting that the Irish coaching staff hadn’t scheduled any visits with Mattingly during the recent contact period.

Notre Dame feels like it is in very good shape with Al-Quaddin Muhammad, another edge player that could add to a linebacking group that looks tremendous. It also allows the staff to continue to chase elite defenders like Max Redfield and Eddie Vanderdoes.

Mattingly says he’s still considering Notre Dame, but the interest right now doesn’t appear to be mutual.

  1. docomer79 - Dec 6, 2012 at 3:21 PM

    Maybe too many elite LBs in this class?

    • 808raiderinparadise - Dec 6, 2012 at 5:24 PM

      Looks like Mattingly “struck-out” swing and a miss! ha.

  2. ctfivula - Dec 6, 2012 at 3:40 PM

    I wonder which other bottom of the list early commits will be next. Anyone know about James? Is he gone too? What about Deebs. I don’t think he is rated all that high either.

    • dmac4real - Dec 6, 2012 at 3:50 PM

      James is 50/50, but apparently the coaches did not even visit him.

      Deeb is solid.

    • onlynd - Dec 6, 2012 at 6:52 PM

      Deebs is an excellent player and leader and a great commitment for ND. Make no mistake about it, he is and will be valued piece of our 2013 linebacking core….

  3. kiopta1 - Dec 6, 2012 at 3:57 PM

    Well best of luck Mattingly. I am happy to have more space for the elite guys ND is targeting hard at the moment.

  4. rrussellndfan - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

    James looks like a great back I don’t care what’s he’s rated I want him playing for the Irish. Deeb looks like an under rated player also he’s big and physical I want both of them regardless.

  5. dudeacow - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:10 PM

    Man, I was excited about this guy. I thought he would be like Danny Spond, one of those underrated players that do really well, but if this guy didn’t feel that ND was right for him, then I’m not mad at him. Now bring in Muhammad, Bryant, Treadwell, and Redfield!

  6. irishmurphy25 - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    Keith, we still have a month until the NCG and are all reading multiple articles about the same topics over and over again. With the free time now available I would love to see an article about the future considering the players returning, recruits, etc. As great as this season has been, the future only appears brighter with more and more great athletes joining the Irish.

    • dmac4real - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:58 PM

      There is a whole off season of 7 months that will deal with that ad nauseum

  7. irish4006 - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:29 PM

    Kudos to Mattingly for de-committing, instead of keeping the Irish on the line and then defecting on NSD. Thank you for being a stand-up guy and good luck!

    • 4horsemenrideagain - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:37 PM

      That’s a good point that probably doesn’t get enough consideration. Mattingly could have taken the position “Oh, I’m still committed to ND, I’m just visiting other schools to make sure…” which always seems so silly to me when I hear it (while also making me slightly hopeful when it’s a kid committed somewhere besides ND). Instead, he comes out and says “I’m still looking.” Nothing wrong with that. People change their minds, especially elite 18-yr.old kids trying to figure out what’s best for them athletically and academically. Good luck to the kid, I hope he finds what he’s looking for, if not at ND, then somewhere else.

      • nudeman - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:58 PM

        Not sure that’s exactly how these played out.

        Mattingly was uncomfortable with his ND choice almost immediately. Long before they were 12-0, they asked him not to take other visits, but he kept taking them. Suddenly ND is 12-0 with a superb LB class coming in, Mattingly is still taking visits, rumors surface of academic issues, and Mattingly became expendable. There is zero moral high ground for Mattingly to claim. He sent all the wrong signals from day 1 and was probably “encouraged” to decommit.

        James has, quite frankly, been even a bigger pain in the ass. His “commitment” came out of nowhere and he’s never bothered to visit SB. Nonetheless ND accepted his commitment, and asked him not to take other visits. He not only kept taking other visits, he even tweeted something to the effect of “If they think their program is so great, they shouldn’t care if I look around”. Wow. Dumbbell alert.

        1): BOTH of these guys used ND in the way Darby and Greenberry did last year. “Commit, secure a spot, if I get hurt they’ll keep my offer open and meanwhile I’ll figure out where I really want to go”.

        2) Tempting to say “good riddance”, but James and Mattingly both have great upside.

        3) It’s a win/win. They can go where they really want to go and ND can get Bryant, Folston, Redfield and maybe another one or two blue chippers. And btw, Treadwell won’t be one of them. He dumped ND yesterday.

        • 4horsemenrideagain - Dec 7, 2012 at 9:40 AM

          I see what you’re saying and I agree that there is still an upside, though having the numbers so unsettled must drive BK bonkers. The PR side of recruiting must also drive BK nuts; as the coach/school you are under all of the scrutiny and subject to all of the blame. Kids commit/decommit, exploit the process, and the coach/school can’t say anything about it, lest they come off like as bitter and petulant (see Les Miles/Gunner Kiel). It seems that the “If you’re looking, we are too” is the only fair way to respond to a kid who commits but clearly isn’t committed.

      • bernhtp - Dec 6, 2012 at 5:53 PM

        Nude: great post. I feel exactly the same way.

        It’s nice that Notre Dame is in a position to be able to better their recruiting class when a 3-4 star decommits. He frankly isn’t near the elite of this class and don’t want him if he’s not a super RKG at this point. We don’t need to reach at this point. All standards are being tightened.

        As for James, I never ever got his deal at all. Dumbell alert in spades.

  8. kicksave1980 - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:59 PM

    I’m a Notre Dame fan since birth, but I went to Arizona State. I love the Sun Devils, as well as Tempe and ASU, but I’m scratching my head as to why anyone in their right mind would de-commit from ND and mention ASU as a possible destination.

    • nudeman - Dec 6, 2012 at 5:24 PM

      Not crazy about the views from the classrooms in South Bend
      Playing time
      ASU “scenery”
      The proverbial “closer to home” BS
      ASU “scenery”
      ASU “scenery”

      • bernhtp - Dec 6, 2012 at 5:55 PM

        The scenery at Notre Dame is more sparse than at many other schools. More importantly, the scenery has far higher standards that precludes dumb jocks. Not too many have bad boy fetishes from what I hear.

  9. tonyricemajorharris - Dec 6, 2012 at 5:12 PM

    Right on Nude. Right on….

  10. heisenbyrg - Dec 6, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    I’m ecstatic about the 4/5 star guys that are strongly considering ND at this point. I will be, however, a bit concerned if the staff stops identifying and signing those “underrated” guys (i.e. Spond or Farley). Would there be room in this class for a guy like Farley, who was underrated by the recruiting services, but has emerged as a solid contributor in his first year of action?

    ND is in great shape, but they need to keep doing the things that got them this far, such as signing underrated, RKGs who perfectly fit the program.

  11. mtflsmitty - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:12 PM

    I’m just a middle aged fan without any informed line of sight. But I’m not to sure there is much moral high ground for anyone invalid in CFB recruiting these days: Not schools, coaches, or players. And I for one don’t blame a kid for playing the game.

    Consider that as we near NSD elite universities, ND included, will not honor all the offers they have made. For many *** and even **** players, it’s a “get while the gettin’ is good” sort of thing. Rest assured there are dozens of 2013 kids holding ND offers that we will no longer honor. From what I hear ND is way better than most universities in this regard. But still common.

    So, I say good luck to all. Play the game, and take care of #1 until you sign. Then it’s all about team wherever you land.

  12. dermmite - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:10 AM

    “If I’m not guaranteed a starting spot then I’m switching.’ Fuck you! Dont want to work hard and earn that spot on a National Platfrom. Then fuck you. Thats why there’s only one, and I mean one 1 Manti. Go play at Houston Bitch!

  13. dermmite - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:17 AM

    “I work hard for what I got.” My parents didn’t graduate from ND. But my Dad did graduate from Washington High in South Bend and tell me how he beat the shit out of some ND students and grads depending on the year. We’ll I’m hear to tell you Dad “ND ID BACK” Love my Dad but love my ND as well. We had some pretty good battles when he was alive!

  14. norcalirish - Dec 7, 2012 at 8:12 AM

    bernhtp—that’s what Saint Mary’s is for

  15. jerseyshorendfan1 - Dec 7, 2012 at 9:50 PM

    What a relief. I was already wincing at the thought of a “Danny Football” moniker.

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