Notre Dame picked up another commitment on Friday when defensive back Jayden Bellamy from Bergen Catholic in New Jersey – the same high school as current quarterback commitment Steve Angeli.
Bellamy held offers from more than 20 programs, but some of the more prominent offers came from Penn State, Clemson, LSU, Michigan, Ohio State, Oklahoma, and a host of others. Penn State was considered the biggest threat to Notre Dame in this recruitment. They were the only other program that Bellamy visited officially.
247 Sports rates Bellamy as a composite 3-star recruit and the 3rd rated prospect in the state of New Jersey. Angeli is ranked 5th while their teammate, cornerback Jaeden Gould is ranked 1st. He ranks as the #442 overall prospect making him a high 3-star not too far outside of 4-star range.
Bellamy transferred to Bergen Catholic for his junior season after starting his high school career at St. John Vianney. In six games last year at Bergen, Bellamy picked off one pass that he returned for a touchdown and recorded 0.5 TFL. On offense, he caught eight passes for 194 yards and 3 touchdowns. He was named second-team all-state – the second time he earned all-state honors.
Bergen Catholic only played six games last fall because of the COVID-shortened season, but Bellamy will be tested against some of the best in the country this fall. Bergen Catholic will face off against power programs from Ohio and Delaware.
Bellamy is the son of former NFL safety Jay Bellamy. The elder Bellamy played for 14 years from 1994 through 2007 between the New Orleans Saints and Seattle Seahawks after staring at Rutgers in college. He recorded 24 interceptions in 179 career games.
As of Friday night, Bellamy is just the second member of the Notre Dame secondary for the class of 2022, but that could change shortly. A Crystal Ball prediction for Notre Dame for cornerback Devin Moore came on Friday night. We have learned recently how meaningless those can be. There is some buzz that safety Jake Pope could join the Irish class in the near future as well. 4-star corner Jaden Mickey committed to Notre Dame earlier this year.
However the secondary class shakes out for Notre Dame, Bellamy adds versatility. Notre Dame recruited him primarily as a cornerback even though he played mainly safety last year. At 5-11, 175 lbs, though, he has the frame for corner on the collegiate level.
After some lean years recruiting corners, Notre Dame has had more success the last two years since adding Mike Mickens as cornerbacks coach at the beginning of 2020. If Notre Dame adds Moore eventually, they’ll have three corners in this year’s class after signing four in 2021 – Ryan Barnes, Chance Tucker, JoJo Johnson, and Philip Riley. With seven corners in two years, eventually, there will naturally be some sort of movement with that group either to safety or to the transfer portal. Mickens and new defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman have a lot to work with with this group, though.