SBT Article on Chinedum N’Dukwe a Must Read

( – Earlier this week the South Bend Tribune wrote an article about Notre Dame safety Chinedum N’Dukwe that is a must read for any Notre Dame fan. If you haven’t read the article by Eric Hansen yet, read it now, and then come back and read the rest of this article.

First off, the story of the N’Dukwe family is truly a great “Notre Dame” story, its what Notre Dame is all about. There’s nothing I can really add to what Mr. Hansen already has said about the N’Dukwe’s so I’ll leave it at that and get to discussing the football aspects of the article.

Hansen reported that N’Dukwe was told to be under 210 pounds by the start of camp if he expected to see the field by Charlie Weis. N’Dukwe played at 230 last year and really looked out of place at times, like a linebacker trying to play safety so this is excellent news.

Last year it was Maurice Stovall whom Weis told to drop weight before reporting to camp and we all know how that turned out. An improvement anything close to the dramatic change we saw from Stovall last year will go a long way towards improving a secondary that was burned much too often.

N’Dukwe stated that he can already notice a difference in how quickly he is getting in and out of his cuts. He, along with fellow safety Tommy Zbikowski, had trouble covering the deep ball last year and a drop off in weight of 20 pounds should help N’Dukwe in terms of keeping up with receivers and recovery speed.

This should put an end to any speculation of N’Dukwe moving to the apache position that has been going on for the past year on all the boards.

Another part of the article I found extremely interesting was N’Dukwe’s comments on the difference in recruiting styles between Weis and Willingham. According to the article, Willingham and the old staff let Notre Dame recruit itself more than putting in the actual leg work associated with recruiting.

Brady Quinn and Jeff Samardzija both were not recruited heavily by the Irish compared to some other schools and ended up at Notre Dame more so because they wanted to go to Notre Dame regardless of the coach. That’s two All Americans and potential Top 10 picks that had to wait on an offer from Willingham

I know this is like beating a dead horse, but come on, we all love to hear these stories now that Weis has the Irish back on top in recruiting. In fact, if you read the article, it seems that Stephen N’Dukwe, Chinedum’s father, may have been a better recruiter for the Irish as he helped win over the parents of defensive end Victor Abiamiri as well that year.

Again, if you haven’t read the article, check it out, it’s a good read and a great story.

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