In late March nearly 500 athletes converged on Las Vegas for the Badger Seven on Seven Tournament. Out of those hundreds of talented young men, one man walked away with all the chips.
Deontay Greenberry, who somehow flew underneath the radar until the Badger tourney, made a mark that had scouts scrambling. At 6'3" and 190 pounds, Greenberry led Washington Union High School in Fresno California with 66 receptions for 1208 yards and eight touchdowns last season, yet somehow received no offers.
"It was a blessing from God to be able to perform at that level," said Greenberry. "I had no offers going into Vegas and just tried to do the best that I could."
Using his 37 inch vertical leap and soft hands, Greenberry made acrobatic catch after acrobatic catch, toe dragging and snatching balls out of nowhere. He also started snatching offers from the big time Universities including Arizona State and UCLA, as well as an invitation to play in the U.S. Army All-American game.
While the offers rolled in, it was no secret that Greenberry was hoping for an offer from Notre Dame—his cousin is recent Irish verbal Tee Shepard, a defensive back out of Central East High School, also in Fresno. On May 5, their dream became more of a reality when the Irish extended an offer.
"We talked about playing together at that level since we were kids," Greenberry stated. This will not be the first time that these cousins have been on the same team though.
"We played on the same team since the sixth grade, all the way through Pop Warner up until high school," Greenberry added. Shepard added that it will be "satisfying" to be on the same team with Deontay again.
Greenberry is also expecting life to get a little easier now that he has committed to Notre Dame. "Things were getting hectic at my school, I need to concentrate on academics and training."
Concentration on training is nothing new to Greenberry, according to his head coach Jeff Freitas. "Deontay is an outstanding football player with high character and a tremendous passion for the game of football. He has all the skills necessary to excel at the Division 1 level, not only as a wide receiver, but also as a free safety."
Coach Freitas is fortunate enough to have known for some time what the rest of the nation recently found out. That is the fact that Deontay Greenberry is an elite athlete.
When asked how it felt to be a part of something special at Notre Dame, Greenberry stated, "It's a blessing to be involved with such a great group of guys, we need to focus on BCS bowl games and a National Championship, that's what this group is capable of."
Greenberry, who said that he won't be an early enrollee, plans to make all his official visits to other schools. But when he arrives in South Bend he says that it will to get down to work. "It's going to be strictly business, I just need to keep focus and maintain my work ethic," Greenberry said.
The fact that Coach Kelly has no problem playing freshman also helped in the decision to commit to Notre Dame. "It played a big part in my decision, "Greenberry said, "we play this game to get onto the field, you always want your best players on the field no matter what year they are in."
To the people that didn't know the name Deontay Greenberry a few months ago, no need to write it down. You are going to be hearing that name a lot over the next four years.
Jim Sheridan is a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report. All quotes in this article have been obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted.