The Notre Dame Fighting Irish football program hosted its annual Junior Day event on Saturday, March 23, and the program made a terrific impression on the young men that attended.
Wide receiver Justin Brent, tight end Daniel Helm, linebacker Greer Martini and offensive tackle Alex Bars were a few of the young men to make the trip to South Bend on Saturday. As part of the experience, they were treated to watching the team practice.
This year's Junior Day class was smaller than it has been in previous years, but the players Notre Dame recruited this weekend are top recruits that will surely make the program stronger, should they ultimately sign on the dotted line to play for the Fighting Irish.
Here are the biggest takeaways from Saturday's recruiting soiree.
Daniel Helm Liked What He Saw
The impressive tight end prospect from Glenwood High School in Chatham, Ill., was pleased by what he saw during his visit on Saturday.
This young man, who will graduate in 2014, has offers from 11 schools, including Michigan, Nebraska, Tennessee and Ole Miss, but Notre Dame has yet to extend an offer.
According to IrishSportsDaily.com's Christian McCollum, after his visit, Helm said:
I really enjoyed it. We sat in on the meetings, then we watched practice, ate and got a campus tour. We got some academic info, a stadium tour, the rest of the Gug and a Q&A with the players.
Practice was sweet. That was the first college practice I’ve seen, so it was really, really cool to see how fast everything moves...I like them a lot. If I received an offer, they’d be one of my favorite schools, easily.
Notre Dame has already extended five other offers, so Helm won't get one at this time. But the seed has been planted for him to potentially come to Notre Dame in 2014.
Greer Martini's Commitment Continues to Be Strong
The inside linebacker from Woodberry Forest in Virginia made his fourth trip to South Bend in less than a year on Saturday, and he came away from the visit more committed than ever to Brian Kelly and the Fighting Irish.
Kelly received a commitment from Martini last summer, but the head coach wanted to be absolutely sure he could count on the young man heading into the 2014 season. Martini said the following, per IrishSportsDaily.com:
Coach Kelly just asked me if I was still 100 percent committed to Notre Dame. I answered him back that I was 100 percent and that this trip put a final closing on my decision. It was just a great trip, and I told him that I was completely committed to Notre Dame.
Martini is a do-it-all linebacker in the mold of Manti Te'o who always seems to be around the ball.
He has sideline-to-sideline speed, and adding him to the team's 2014 roster will assure that Notre Dame continues to feature one of the strongest defenses in the nation.
Andrew Trumbetti Verbally Commits
One of the hottest recruits in the nation of late, the talented defensive end from Demarest High School in New Jersey made big news when he verbally committed to Notre Dame on Saturday.
Before making his commitment to Kelly and the Fighting Irish, Trumbetti had received 15 offers from programs like Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Maryland, Miami (Fla.), Michigan State, Penn State, Purdue, Rutgers, Stanford and Virginia.
But according to his high school coach, Tony Mottola, via ESPN.com's Jared Shanker (membership required), Trumbetti has been a Notre Dame fan for life, and he's amped to play for the Irish:
He’s excited. He loves the campus and the coaching staff. He loves everything about Notre Dame. Going there this weekend solidified everything he feels about Notre Dame. I think it was probably a very easy decision for him today. You’re going to play with a top football program and get a great education—it’s the best of both worlds.
Trumbetti logged 12 sacks last year as a junior, and adding him to play on the line in front of Martini in 2014 and beyond is a major score for Kelly and the Irish.
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