College Football
Message Board
Lemming's Top 25:
Running Backs
Tight Ends
M College BB
Top 100 Prospects
Recruit Database
Message Board
Sunday, December 2
NFL hire would help recruiting process

By Tom Lemming
Special to

Bob Davie's firing will have an immediate impact on Notre Dame's upcoming recruiting class.

The program had scheduled a big recruiting weekend later this week with 25 players coming in for visits. Davie's assistant coaches have all been fired but have been asked to stay on and recruit, which means they could eventually interview with the new head coach for a chance to stay on with his staff. The football administration is deciding whether to go ahead with this weekend's visits or cancel them. If the visits are canceled, Notre Dame won't be able to have another recruiting weekend until Jan. 17 because of the school calendar, and that could obviously have a negative impact on how good a class it is able to sign.

Notre Dame had half of its 2002 class on board already, with 13 commitments out of 25 scholarships to give. However, a few of those pledges can be expected to take other school visits or jump ship completely; in fact, a couple of them -- QB Chris Olsen and LB Jeremy Van Alstyne -- are already planning to take visits to other schools or have already done so.

If Jon Gruden or Steve Mariucci took the job, it wouldn't matter very much that neither coach could report to South Bend until February. The name recognition, press coverage and fan enthusiasm that would accompany one of them taking the job would bring immediate recruiting success to the Fighting Irish. By mid-January, Gruden or Mariucci could have a few coaches in place who could run recruiting, and the prospects would be assured that the head coach would make home visits as soon as the NFL season was over.

If a college coach were hired, the school still wouldn't be able to host prospects' visits until mid-January, and the new coach may recruit some players that he'd been recruiting at his previous school and would also try to sign some of the great prospects that were leaning to Notre Dame previously.

My guess is that a successful, big-name NFL coach would have a better recruiting class than a college coach, because of the reception that the pro coach would receive from recruits.

Tom Lemming is editor of Prep Football Report. For information on how to subscribe to Prep Football Report's three yearly magazines and five newsletters ($60 for the magazines and $90 for both magazines and newsletters), fax your name, address and fax number to 847-842-1313 or write to P.O. Box 59113, Schaumburg, Ill. 60159. For year-round recruiting updates, call Tom Lemming's Prep Football Hotline at 900-860-9888. Calls are $1.79 per minute, and callers must be 18 years old or have parents' permission.

 More from ESPN...
Notre Dame fires Davie, coaching staff
Notre Dame coach Bob Davie ...

Chat with Tom Lemming's recruiting expert ...

 ESPN Tools
Email story
Most sent
Print story