The faxes machines are still warming up around the country on National Signing Day 2017, but the Irish have already lost one of the few battles there were still in! Russ Yeast, a 4-star CB/WR from Indiana started off the day by faxing in his letter of intent to Louisville.
Despite being a Indiana native and Under Armour All-American, Russ Yeast didn’t have an offer until two weeks ago after Notre Dame filled up at cornerback with Paulson Adebo and Elijah Hicks. After both prospects decommitted from Notre Dame in January, however, the Irish finally offered the in-state product. Unforuntately for Notre Dame it was too little too late. Louisville head coach Bobby Petrino announced Yeast’s addition to Louisville on Twitter.
— Bobby Petrino (@CoachPetrinoUL) February 1, 2017
A day after being offered by Notre Dame an official visit was set up for that very weekend. Yeast visited Notre Dame with Evan Fields, Kofi Wardlow, Jordan Genmark-Heath, Tre Norwood, and three of Notre Dame’s commits – David Adams, Kurt Hinish, & Drew White. Since then it’s been near radio silence from the Yeast camp as he weighed his dream offer from Notre Dame versus the long standing relationship he had with the Louisville staff and class.
In the end, the long standing relationships with Louisville won out.
Versatility is a huge part of Yeast’s game. He has the ability to play wide receiver on the college level and could have easily ended up on the offensive side of the for the Irish down the road. His game is pretty well suited for Chip Long‘s offense. Notre Dame will be adding wide receivers Michael Young and Jafar Armstrong later today as well, but were actively trying to add a third in this class so there could have easily be room for Yeast on that side of the ball.
Yeast could have filled a major void for Notre Dame that was left by the decommitments of both Adebo and Hicks and is the only cornerback in this year’s recruiting class. Even though corner wasn’t a major need after last year’s haul, it was important to continue to build consistent depth across the depth chart. Considering Yeast was an Under Armour All-American the Irish could have – and should have – added to the depth with a legit playmaker.
Let’s also be honest. Notre Dame should not have lost this one. Even with the commitments of Adebo and Hicks early, it’s hard to fathom why a 4-star in-state recruit who can play WR or CB didn’t have an offer early. Had Yeast had an offer in the fall, this one would have been over a long time ago and there would have been no drama here for Notre Dame. Hopefully the new defensive coaching staff led by Mike Elko who has already proven to be much more active on the trail than his predecessor will prevent such matters in the future.
With Yeast off the board, Notre Dame remains at 18 expected signatures currently. Notre Dame is looking to add more later today as well with S/OLB Jeremiah Osuwu-Koramoah, DE Kofi Wardlow, and DL Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa yet to make their final decisions. Notre Dame has a legit chance with each but is not considered a slam dunk for any of them.
Russ Yeast Senior Highlights