(UHND.com) – Notre Dame received its 12th verbal commitment of the year Friday when running back Armando Allen selected the Irish over instate Florida. The Miami area native had Charlie Weis in his home Thursday night and Weis secured Allen’s commitment giving the Irish a game-breaking running back in this year’s class.
Allen (5’10”, 185, 4.35) has phenomenal speed as evidenced by him running the fastest 40 time at last year’s All American Scouting Combine and has incredible balance and vision for a high school running back. He is a very dangerous back in the open field and does not go down easily despite weighing just 185 pounds.
The one element missing from Allen’s game at this point, it’s the inside running game between the tackles. Allen can make people miss with the best of them and can bounce off defenders, but he isn’t going to run over or through people with his size.
Allen’s recruitment came down to Notre Dame and in-state Florida and most pundits felt he was a lock for Florida as recently as Monday of this week, but after Weis visited his home Thursday, it sealed the deal.
At his press conference Friday, he told the Miami Herald that, “All this week I had coaches come to my house to talk to me, but when I took my visit to Notre Dame, I knew it was the right choice for me.”
One of the issues that was hindering Notre Dame’s recruiting of Allen was the issue of early admission. Previously, Allen was told he would not be able to enroll early if he came to Notre Dame, but that issue cleared up and Allen told the Miami Herald that he planned on enrolling in January. Quarterback Jimmy Clausen and cornerback Gary Gray will also be enrolling early for the Irish.
A broken leg this year may hurt his rankings among the nation’s elite, but Allen is currently ranked 67th overall by Rivals.com and 40th overall according to Tom Lemming. Scout.com lists Allen as just the 21st running back in the country, but don’t let that ranking fool you, Allen is indeed one of the nation’s elite backs.
Allen is the second Florida native to commit to Notre Dame this year, joining offensive linemen Emeka Nwankwo. Notre Dame has had trouble recruiting Florida in recent years, but in the last two year’s Charlie Weis has gotten commitments from five of the Sunshine State’s top prospects after signing Sam Young, Dan Wegner, and Richard Jackson.