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Hood dazzles during testing at The Opening

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In one of the recruiting game’s biggest (and newest) stages, Notre Dame running back prospect Elijah Hood put on a show. The five-star Irish commitment was one of the ten finalist selected for the Nike SPARQ finals, televised on ESPNU on Monday night.

Matched up with his prodigious game tape, Hood’s measureables fit the bill when you’re looking for an elite running back with both power and speed.

At six-foot, 221 pounds, Hood put up a more than impressive 4.48 40-yard dash, putting to rest any questions on his top end speed with a blazing electronically timed sprint. With a 36.3-inch vertical leap, Hood showed some explosiveness, and his strength was on display in the “Powerball” segment, where he essentially kneeling chess-passed a weighted medicine ball 42.5 feet.

The seven-on-seven portion of the combine continues today, with several Irish prospects or commitments competing. Let’s run through a few notable names.

DeShone Kizer: The Irish quarterback commitment performed in the Elite 11 competition as well as The Opening. Kizer measured in at 6-foot-4.5, 216-pounds, running a 4.96 forty.

IrishSportsDaily.com caught up with Trent Dilfer, who evaluated Kizer’s camp session, raving about the person and giving constructive criticism about the player.

“DeShone is off the charts in the subjective stuff; the competitive stuff, the trainability,” Dilfer said after Sunday’s session.

“He is struggling with some mechanics that we tried to fix in Columbus (at the Nike Football Training Camp). We have the tools to fix it, he’s just not feeling it yet.”

Dilfer is planning to sit down with Kizer and show him what he’s talking about mechanically on film. The former NFL quarterback believes the source of Kizer’s mechanical flaws is actually a positive.

“It’s because he’s an all-sport athlete, which I love by the way,” said Dilfer. “I love the fact that Notre Dame gets a guy that’s going to get so much better once he gets this cleaned up. He’d be the first to tell you that he’s been inconsistent.”

Justin Brent: It was a very good day for Brent, who was one of the top receivers at The Opening. Brent measured in at 6-1, 197 pounds, and ran a 4.52 forty. When assessing standouts from Day One, 247Sports.com said this about Brent, their No. 1 rated receiver for the day:

A rangy, wiry wide receiver, Brent flashed all afternoon on Monday with his ability to stab the football with his hands. He also showed suddenness and separating ability upfield and the size to finish over smaller defenders.

All reports from Day One have Brent as the cream of the wide receiving crop, a good sign for the very early Irish commitment and another data-point that suggests the early evaluation tools of the Irish coaching staff are on point.