Apr. 21, 2012; South Bend, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish running back Theo Riddick (6) catches a pass in front of linebacker Danny Spond (13) in the first quarter of the spring game at Notre Dame Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-US PRESSWIRE
Notre Dame lands one of the top national recruits.
Jaylon Smith, an elite linebacker recruit, committed to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish over the Ohio State Buckeyes Saturday evening. Smith stars for Bishop Luers High School in Fort Wayne, Ind. His offer list consists of almost every major program in the country, including Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Michigan, Oklahoma and USC.
Smith is a consensus five-star recruit, and for good reason. At 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds, Smith either currently has or projects to have plus skills at every facet of the outside linebacker position. He already possesses excellent agility, quickness and speed for his size, allowing him to excel both in coverage and in rushing the passer off the edge. That coverage ability is important for a linebacker of his height, and is why Smith profiles as a three-down linebacker.
Smith has great length and adequate strength. More importantly, however, he has the frame to add a lot of good weight. Smith should be able to carry 235 pounds without losing quickness or agility.
Smith is an excellent addition for the Irish, who now have 13 commitments in the class of 2013. While a starting role could be difficult to come by as a freshman, it's not out of the question for Smith to make an impact off the edge rushing the passer on third down.