Kyle Prater, one of the nation’s elite wide receiver recruits, is down to six schools and Notre Dame is one of them according to Taylor Bell of the Chicago Sun Times.
“I’m still trying to see what feels comfortable yet,” Prater told me earlier this week. “It is more difficult than I thought it would be to make my decision. I want to make sure I won’t have any regrets. I want to make some official visits so I probably will wait until after the season.”
Even though Prater’s close friend, Proviso East safety Corey Cooper, who long ago committed to Illinois, has publicly stated that he believes Prater will join him in Champaign, Prater isn’t ready to announce his choice.
He has 40 scholarship offers. He said he has narrowed his list to six–Alabama, USC, Oklahoma, Illinois, Tennessee and Notre Dame. He plans to visit Tennessee on Aug. 1 and might visit Alabama before the season begins.
Prater was recently upgraded to a 5 star prospect by Rivals.com and is right at the top of Notre Dame’s recruiting board at receiver along with Justin McCay.
Notre Dame is in for a dog fight for Prater’s services with his finalists forming a who’s who of traditional college football powers. The key for Notre Dame will be to show more consistency and fire power on the offensive side of the ball in 2009. If Jimmy Clausen can air it out to Michael Floyd and Golden Tate like Brady Quinn used to air it out to Jeff Samardjiza, Rhema McKnight, and Maurice Stovall this season, the Irish will have a very good chance of landing Prater.
Potentially working against (or possibly for) Notre Dame in the recruitment of Prater is fellow Illinois recruit Corey Cooper – a close friend of Prater’s. Cooper is committed to Illinois at the moment, but has been open to a few schools, including Notre Dame, for the past several months. Cooper recently told the Sun Times he felt Prater would end up at Illinois when all is said and done, but has also been quoted as saying he’s still looking at a few schools himself.
The difference between a solid class and an elite class for Notre Dame this year will be whether or not Weis and staff can close on the remaining elite recruits who still have Notre Dame in their sights like Prater and Cooper. I’ve said it for the last couple months and I’ll say it again. If Notre Dame produces on the field this year, recruiting will finish strong.