Davonte Neal, a top athlete recruit from Scottsdale (Ariz.) Chaparral High School, committed to Notre Dame Tuesday afternoon after an prolonged recruiting and announcement process.
The commitment followed considerable drama earlier in the day. Neal was expected to commit to either the Arizona Wildcats or the Notre Dame Fighting Irish Tuesday morning, live from his former elementary school. Instead, Neal chose nobody. In fact, he didn't even bother to show up. Hundreds of elementary school kids were crushed.
The school did not have the students reassemble upon Neal's real trip to the school, likely because enough class time had already been wasted. Neal did, however, go to each classroom and apologize. Neal's father was thought to want him to attend Notre Dame, while Neal wanted to be at Arizona.
Neal chose from finalists Arizona, Notre Dame, North Carolina, and Arkansas. In addition to those four, Neal held offers from Ohio State, Florida, and Oklahoma. Neal is 5'9 and 170 pounds and is rated four-stars by most recruiting services. He can play slot receiver or cornerback at the next level. Neal was impressive during the Under Armour All-America Game practices in Orlando.
If he plays offense, Neal should have an immediate impact in Notre Dame's spread offense in the slot and taking a few handoffs. If he plays defense, Neal could contend for a starting job, or perhaps as a nickelback. There's no question that Neal will make an impact on special teams in the return game. Neal was one of the last remaining uncommitted prospects of the 2012 cycle and his signing just about wraps up the 2012 recruiting year.