Notre Dame might not be hosting a huge recruiting weekend for the class of 2018 as they did a few backs that ended up netting four commitments, but they are hosting one recruit who could make a huge impact on the 2017 season this weekend. Reports are that Clemson defensive tackle graduate transfer Scott Pagano has moved up his visit to Notre Dame and will be on campus this weekend.
Reports last month said that Pagano would be visiting Notre Dame towards the end of the month as part of a circuit of five recruiting visits including stops at Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas, and Oregon. That trip has been moved up and Brian Kelly and his staff will be hosting Pagano on the last weekend before the start of spring football.
We’ve written plenty on Pagano already, but in case you forgot; this could be a big deal for Notre Dame. The Irish defensive line has underwhelmed over the last few years and Pagano could step in and potentially start from day one – especially with the future of Daniel Cage still in doubt due to concussions over the last few seasons.
What, if anything, Pagano moving his visit date up means for Notre Dame is unclear at this point as he has not been doing any media interviews throughout the process other than to confirm visit dates. As of now all other visits are still scheduled as is: Oklahoma on (March 31), Arkansas (April 7), Texas (April 14), and Oregon (April 21).
Landing Pagano would be yet another positive development for Notre Dame this off-season. In fact, adding Pagano to the 2017 roster would be HUGE for Notre Dame. Pagano could step in and take over the nose tackle position immediately if Cage is unable to go or could play next to Cage if he able to play this fall.
The weather for the Hawaii native won’t be terrible for South Bend in early March, but it won’t be scorching either. The high tomorrow will be 38 but the mercury will rise to 56 degrees on Sunday. Of course, some bad weather hasn’t stopped Notre Dame or Brian Polian from helping the Irish land talent from Hawaii before (see the case of Manti Te’o).
Notre Dame already added one graduate transfer earlier this off-season when Freddy Canteen officially signed with the Irish earlier this week. The former Michigan wide receiver will report to Notre Dame over the summer and will at minimum provide Notre Dame with depth at the X and Z positions.
While expectations aren’t huge with Canteen (though with two years of eligibility he has plenty of opportunity), they would be pretty big with Pagano should he end up in South Bend this summer. Notre Dame still has a long way to go here, but just getting him on campus is huge for Notre Dame and new defensive coordinator Mike Elko.
Notre Dame has been on fire on the recruiting trail for the last few weeks ever since the newly formulated staff hit the road to close out the class of 2017. Let’s hope that momentum continues this weekend with Pagano on campus.