Feb 6, 2013, 10:34 AM EST
Notre Dame just made it official with one of the elite cornerbacks in the country, with Arizona’s Cole Luke sending in his letter-of-intent. Playing his high school ball for former Irish quarterback Steve Belles, the Irish held onto one of the West Coast’s premiere cover men. Let’s take a closer look at Luke.
Measureables: 6-foot, 165-pounds
Accolades: First-team All-State, AZ high school football coaches. First-team All-State, Phoenix Gazette. Four-star Rivals, 247, ESPN. Semper Fidelis All-American.
Impressive Offers: Michigan, Oklahoma, UCLA, Texas.
Projected Position: Cornerback
Quick Take: Versatile cover man who can do just about anything that Notre Dame will need from him. Needs to put mass on his frame, but great ball skills. Physically similar to KeiVarae Russell, only more natural at defensive back.
Notre Dame doesn’t beat Texas and Oklahoma for skill position players all that often. One of the stars of this recruiting class and one of secondary coach Bob Elliott’s favorite recruits ever. Nephew of former All-Pro NFLer Darren Woodson.
What it means for the Irish roster: Luke is another building block that also solidifies a position where the Irish are still in need of depth and talent. Even with Bennett Jackson and Russell returning to the starting lineup, the Irish believe there’s a chance for Luke to find his way into the secondary rotation quickly, especially with his speed and height. Right now he’s a willing tackler, but he’ll need to add 10-15 pounds to his frame.
Obligatory YouTube highlight tape: Here’s a look at Luke’s senior highlights from Hamilton High. If the Irish are looking for punt returners, it looks like they have another candidate.