Tyler Luatua Commits to Notre Dame

Notre Dame picked up another member of the #GoldenArmy14 on Monday when Tyler Luatua committed to the Irish over the Crimson Tide after months of having Notre Dame and Alabama in his top two.  Luatua confirmed his commitment over Twitter.

Luatua is a consensus 4-star recruit and considered one of the nation’s elite tight ends.  ESPN in fact ranks Luatua as their #1 tight end in the entire country and has him ranked in their top 100 overall at number 76.  Rivals doesn’t have Luatua ranked in their top 100, but does rate him as a 4-star recruit.  Bottom line, Luatua is pretty darn good.

Over the last few months Luatua has had Notre Dame and Alabama atop his list.  During that time it was speculated that Luatua could commit to Notre Dame several different times leading some to speculate that he was cooling on the Irish.  Luatua had dropped several hints along the way, however, that the Irish were still his top school including one over the weekend to Class of 15 commitment Blake Barnett.

In the end, Luatua ended up selecting Notre Dame over Alabama even though his brother is a guard for the Crimson Tide. Before narrowing his choices to Notre Dame and Alabama, Luatua picked up scholarships offers from Florida State, Florida, Georgia, Miami, Michigan, Ohio State, Oklahoma, UCLA, USC, and a host of other schools.

Notre Dame’s recent string of success with tight ends played a role in Luatua’s decision.  The last four starting tight ends for Notre Dame have all gone on to have very successful collegiate and professional careers.  Tyler Eifert, Kyle Rudolph, John Carlson, and Anthony Fasano all had great careers for the Irish and were then draft in either the second or first round of the NFL Draft.

Notre Dame now has two tight ends in this year’s class with Luatua joining Nic Weishar who committed to Notre Dame back in April.  Notre Dame has utilized multiple tight ends often over the last few years and took two tight ends last year as well – Durham Smythe and Mike Heuerman.  With Troy Niklas and Ben Koyack both being out of eligibility following the 2014 season and Alex Welch deciding to transfer for his 5th year, bringing in two tight ends again this year makes a lot of sense.

Notre Dame fans will be able to get a glimpse of Luatua next month when he competes in the Under Armor All-American game on January 2 (4:00 ET on ESPN).   Luatua will join future teammates Corey Holmes, Alex Bars, Nick Watkins, Andrew Trumbetti, and Sam Mustipher.  Isaiah McKenzie will be playing in the All-American game as well and could have his test score situation resolved by then as well.

The #GoldenArmy14 continues to grow after the weekend commitments of Kolin Hill and Nile Sykes and now Luatua giving the Irish 21 members with just a few spots remaining as the Irish push up against both the 25 limit for a single class and the 85 overall scholarship limit.

Tyler Luatua Highlights


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  1. Heard he is leaning toward SC – oh well, Trojans look to be on the way back up, hope they don’t boot ND to the face to hard as ND continues to cave in on itself.

    Happy New Year!

  2. fxm, there are “classic” nose guards, then nose guards you can win with.
    Sean Cwynar was highly effectice as a co-starter, though no Nix.
    We have Jones, and if healthy, Springman. Springrman is big, rough and a fighter. That is not a bad place to start and it is likely that one of the DL/DE recruits will be positioned at NG.

    Great college teams differ from the old style pre-free agency pro teams. Those pro teams had the same core strengths each year. Colleges not so much. for example, in 2011, the year they beat LSU in the title game, the core strength of the Tide was the back 8. They had Hightower and U[pshaw, then Milliner, Lester, Dre Kirkpatrick, Mark Barron and Ha Ha Clinton Dix. A lot graduated and the championship back 8 was not nearly so stong. But the offensive line and RB corps was one of the greats, rivaling SC ’05 and Nebraska ’95.

    Different areas of the team will rise and fall each year. Some that are carried on year will do the heavy lifting the next.

    For the Irish to be outstanding in 2014, the offense will, for the first time in three years have to carry the defense. But while the NG and ILB positions are not loaded with All-americans, I think many will be surprised at the output of both positions

    1. I agree, not worth hyper-ventilating about. Jarron may come back next year at 320 and as BK always gets flustered about, we use a 4 man front about half the time. Just like in the NFL draft, if you look at the board, there were not a lot classic nose guard among the high school ranks available this year. I will be very surprised and disappointed if the O doesn’t average over 30 points a game next year. I love what is going on with our offensive line and just hope we can someday equal that on the other side.

  3. Sorry, meant to say recruiting experts. As a Stillers fan have been thinking too much about the NFL draft for a few weeks now.

    Merry Christmas!

    1. The only guy we have with the size and athleticism is on the Offensive side, John Monteleus.

      This is why I am not sold on that D at ND. I just can’t see us routinely getting 6’2″ 330 plus pound “scholars” to man that position.

  4. Bad news on the recruiting front. Apparently, massive DT Matt Elam is no longer considering ND. That’s a huge loss. Now that Nix is gone, we don’t have that massive NT that every 3-4 D needs (ask the Stillers how much they miss “Big Snack” Casey Hampton!).

    Had we landed Elam and ILB Morgan that would’ve been a great haul in the D front 7 to go along with the great gets on the O line. I don’t know where the Irish turn to next for a massive interior D lineman. All the top ones are already committed or have ruled out ND.

    Perhaps some of our resident draft experts have some insights on the topic of a true NT for this recruiting cycle.

    Happy Advent!

    1. Lou would have never allowed this to happen!!

      This guy can’t recruit, has no heart.

      Fire Swarbrick!
      Fire Kelly!
      Fire Diaco, er wait a minute.


    2. SteelfanRob,

      Right now that was the last big target. I think that having that big space eating NT is needed, but not a neccessity. I think ND will be fine with the D-line talent in this class. It is hard to find a Louis Nix, but I think Jarron Jones looked good and a couple of other lineman will step up.

      1. The problem is you actually have to have back-ups as well. Looks like Elam was an academic casualty which relates to my point below.

  5. how about Michigan State defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi has been named a finalist for the Broyles Award as the nation’s top assistant college football …

    1. His next stop is a head coaching job. Turned down the job Diaco took (good choice). I think the Sparty coaches must be pretty awesome to do as well as they do. They don’t have talent anything like we have.

      1. I agree. I have been following the MSU program and Dantonio has done a great job getting that program into position as THE program in Michigan and one of the top 3 in the Big 10. He’s been steady with little drama other than the heart issue, and he’s built some consistent traditions, like beating Michigan, going to the Big 10 title game, not collapsing late in the season, consistenly tough defense, and players that don’t embarass the school. MSU is a QB and tight end away from perennial top 10 finisher. A great year for them this year.

  6. troy nicklas is done after next year?

    thats crazy the way it works sometimes.
    after years and years of watching ND football there always seems to be certain guys that 4 years goes by like the blink of an eye and then theyr gone.

    then theres other guys that i feel like i’ve been watching for the better part of a decade.

  7. Hey, looks good enough to me. Why is it he seems to have tanked in some circles? I think maybe he even lost one of his stars, I know that sounds funny. The implication seems to be that he turned out to be quite slow.

    1. Scout is being ridiculous. They are the only site that has him as a 3-star. He’s ESPN’s #1 TE, Rivals’ #13 TE, and 247Sports #7 TE and a 4-star on all of those sites.

      The 247Composite lists him as the #3 overall TE with a grade of .9336 (4-star), which makes him ND’s 5th highest rated recruit.

      All-in-all a huge pickup.

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