Apr 5, 2014, 10:15 PM EDT
Notre Dame’s recruiting efforts are heating up, with Brian Kelly and the Irish accepting the commitment of Nicco Fertitta this weekend. The Las Vegas native is the third commitment in the last week, extending the 2015 class to six.
Fertitta, a 5-foot-9 defensive back who has camped at Notre Dame, is a three-star prospect with a less than impressive offer list. He chose the Irish over Arizona, Boston College, Houston, UNLV and Utah. That said, he was an early target that Brian VanGorder identified early in his evaluations, and the fact that the Irish accepted his commitment tells you they believe in him as a player.
Fertitta was on campus this weekend, and the U.S. Army All-American joins Ronnie Stanley as another Bishop Gorman recruit, a powerhouse football program in Las Vegas that the Irish would very much like to make a recruiting pipeline.
Fertitta has been a presence on the camp scene this offseason, holding his own against national recruiting competition. While he’s physically undersized for what the Irish have traditionally looked for in the secondary, VanGorder has opened up the profile of players he’s looking for to incorporate athletes of all shapes and sizes.
Fertitta’s father Lorenzo has a connection to professional sports, serving as the CEO of the UFC. But any questions as to whether Fertitta was offered based on who his father is could be answered by his highlight reel. Fertitta looks like a safety or nickel back prospect for the Irish, and is a heavy hitter for an undersized defender.