(Ed. Note: Photo is property of Ryan Call.)
It’s not every day that the Irish pick up a recruit from their own backyard, but Notre Dame reeled in commitment number ten from South Bend’s Washington High School, with linebacker-running back-athlete David Perkins announcing his intent this afternoon.
Perkins chose the Irish over Tennessee and Syracuse and had offers from Michigan State, Mississippi State, Iowa, Arizona and others.
“Notre Dame not only committed to me as an athlete, but also in my development as a man, both academically and socially,” Perkins said at his press conference. “Coach Kelly and his staff have proven to me that Notre Dame will provide me with more than a four-year commitment. Instead, Notre Dame offers me a 40-year plan for a successful life… I’d like to thank the University of Notre Dame for the life-changing opportunity that they have offered me.”
With Perkins, the Irish have clearly targeted an explosive, fast-twitch athlete, now the question becomes where does he play? If Notre Dame turned down linebacker Joe Bolden because he didn’t have the size the Irish wanted in an outside linebacker, they likely see something extraordinary in Perkins that let them take a chance on the similar-sized player.
It could be the geography that goes along with protecting your city limits or it could be that Perkins has put up impressive tape at running back as well, a position the Irish need to fill in this recruiting class. More likely though, it’s Perkins’ freakish first step, athleticism that turned Perkins into a combine All-Star when working against offensive linemen.
At 6-foot-2 and roughly 210 pounds, Perkins has the ability to grown into the mold of Darius Fleming or Steve Filer with some serious weight room work, two athletes that don’t quite fit the Brian Kelly – Bob Diaco defensive template but might have exceptional aspects that make him attractive to the coaching staff.
What’s clear is that Notre Dame got a very good football player from its own friendly confines, a proposition that was likely too good to pass up.
It appears about half of the recruiting bus is already filled, with 10 scholarships accounted for, not to mention the return of Chris Badger and the potential enrollment of Jordan Prestwood.