Five-star cornerback Priest Willis was set to make his decision under the bright lights of the Under Armour All-America game, but that is a decision date that will reportedly change.
Willis' recruitment has been up in the air for a while now, so much so that I predicted that this decision wouldn't take place at the Under Armour game last week. He didn't strike me as a recruit who was ready to make a decision, and that sentiment has been confirmed.
According to William Weathers of TigerBait.com—who quotes Willis' step-father, Michael Walker—the 5-star cornerback just needs more time to make a decision:
Walker said Willis will not make his decision at the Under Armour All-American game on Jan. 5 as expected and instead would make one final official visit on Jan. 18.
The schools that remain in contention are Arizona State, UCLA, Notre Dame and Oklahoma, according to Willis' last group of top schools.
"He's not 100 percent sure what he wants to do so he's not going to commit there," Walker said of the Under Armour event. "It's just not really having enough time to make a set decision and not be in a situation where the decision could change. He's not going to make a decision and then change his mind. He's not going to be that kid."
While waiting to make a decision is ultimately a wise decision by Willis, this will hurt one of the programs that appears to have a good shot at landing his commitment—LSU.
The actual focus of Weather's report on TigerBait.com was the official visit Willis just recently took to LSU, and it was a visit that appears to have gone very well. Whether it be the time spent with Les Miles or LSU's history of developing elite cornerbacks—the visit to LSU was a good one for Willis, per Weather's report.
For as good as that is for the Tigers, his decision to wait on a decision will hurt them, though. It's smart by Willis because time will allow emotion to fade, thus making his decision a logical, calculated one. LSU still looks great in any calculated recruiting decision, but more time also means more opportunity for other schools to grab a foothold with Willis.
One of those schools is Notre Dame, and the Fighting Irish have to be feeling good about the extra time they have been afforded to recruit WIllis.
Brian Kelly arguably boasts the hottest college football program in the nation right now, and that hype will be multiplied by tenfold if the Fighting Irish can beat Alabama to win the BCS National Championship.
Willis' decision date delay affords Notre Dame more time to sway the 5-star cornerback, and it may provide them with the opportunity to brag about a National Championship during his recruitment. If he were to stick to his original decision date, he would have made his choice before the big game.
At least now, Notre Dame has a chance to make a extremely impressive impression.
Who has the better shot to land Willis?
The Fighting Irish can also use the extra time to try to convince Willis to take an official visit. That's been the one thing Notre Dame hasn't been able to accomplish in regards to Willis' recruitment, but if Kelly and his staff can get his fifth visit scheduled, that could be a game changer.
Overall, the decision to delay his decision will hurt LSU in the race for Willis. Conversely, it may provide Notre Dame with some much-needed time to get back into said race.