The 81st Blue-Gold game was as productive off the field as it was on the field with Notre Dame adding three members to the recruiting class of 2011 – Tony Springmann (DE), Conor Hanratty (OL), and Garrett Grace (LB). All three of which are 4-star recruits according to Scout.com.
The name that should jump out the most of the group is Conor Hanratty. It should jump out because he is the son of former Notre Dame quarterback Terry Hanratty. The younger Hanratty will spend his Notre Dame protecting the players handling his father’s former position as an interior offensive lineman for the Irish. Before committing to Notre Dame, Hanratty held scholarship offers from Boston College, Iowa, Stanford, Wisconsin, West Virginia,and Syracuse among others.
Hanratty was one of the first prospects to be offered a scholarship by the previous coaching staff last fall and then again once the new staff was in place. Despite his bloodlines, he did visit multiple other schools before deciding that Notre Dame was the best place for him just as it was his father who won a national championship in 1966. Now that he’s on board, he’s the first interior offensive lineman added this year’s class by Kelly and staff.
In the video below you’ll see that Hanratty (6-4, 305) plays in a spread style offense at New Canaan High School in Connecticut. You’ll also notice that he can get out in space and move pretty well for a big lineman.
Tony Springmann (6-6, 257, 4.8) is listed as an offensive lineman on most recruiting websites but was recruiting a four technique defensive tackle which is the defensive end in Notre Dame’s 3-4 alignment. He selected the Irish over Boston College, Michigan State, Purdue, and Stanford. Like Hanratty, he was being recruited by the previous coaching staff as well although he had not received an offer from the Irish until recently. Springmann joins Brad Carrico as defensive ends in this year’s class.
Springmann is a local product from nearby Bishop DeWenger in Fort Wayne, Indiana – a program that produced current wide receiver John Goodman and tight end Tyler Eifert.
Here is some video of Springmann on the defensive side of the ball.
And here is another video of Springmann, this time of him speaking at the Blue Gold game about his decision to attend Notre Dame.
The third commitment Notre Dame picked up came from Cincinnati native Jarrett Grace. Grace (6-4, 235, 4.7) projects as an inside linebacker in Notre Dame’s 3-4 alignment. He picked the Irish over Boston College, Cincinnati, Stanford, West Virginia, and Wisconsin among others. Kelly was recruiting the Cincy native last year when he was the head coach for Cincinnati and continued recruiting the talented linebacker prospect after taking over at Notre Dame.
Grace is the first linebacker in this year’s class and the fourth recruit on the defensive side of the ball joining Springmann, Brad Carrico, and Mathias Farley.