Notre Dame added their 15th commitment to the 2016 recruiting class this weekend when Southern California safety D.J. Morgan pledged his commitment to the Irish. Morgan stars for St. John Bosco, and is a jumbo-sized safety who has the length to potentially grow into an in the box player as well.
Depending on the recruiting service, Morgan is a fringe 4-star prospect. Yet he’s a late bloomer who missed his freshman season with an injury and converted from wide receiver. He’s also a long defensive back, somewhere in the 6-foot-2 or 6-3 range, certainly an asset for a Irish secondary that could use a big body. After committing early to Arizona State, Notre Dame worked their way into the conversation with Mike Denbrock and Mike Sanford, the Irish assistants going into one of the hottest rising programs in Los Angeles and coming out with Morgan. (Bosco is where 5-star QB and current UCLA freshman Josh Rosen played.)
Morgan was on campus for his official visit and saw the win over Texas, hosted by freshman Nick Coleman. He’s known for his physicality near the line of scrimmage, and multiple reports say that the Irish coaching staff has referenced Drue Tranquill when discussing Morgan’s future role in the Notre Dame defensive scheme.
Ultimately, Morgan’s speed—and how big he grows—will determine where he ends up. There’s room for a lanky, hard-hitting safety in the Irish secondary, especially with Elijah Shumate, Matthias Farley and Avery Sebastian moving on after the season and Max Redfield finishing his eligibility next year.
With plenty of big names left on the board and the Irish short on spots, how Notre Dame finishes up this recruiting class will be anybody’s guess. But adding Morgan to a secondary that already has commitments from Julian Love, Jalen Elliot and Spencer Perry is another key piece to the class.