Notre Dame's recruiting class building on poached players

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Get burnt one time, it might be unlucky. But get beaten twice, well, that's the start of a trend.

Penn State has to be wondering what it's been doing wrong after losing two top commits from its upcoming recruiting class. Perhaps the Nittany Lions should also wonder what Notre Dame is doing right — after all, the Fighting Irish snatched both players away from them.

Elite 11 quarterback Brandon Wimbush decommited from Penn State Tuesday afternoon, announcing over Twitter that he had decided to switch to Notre Dame.

"Life decision, lot of prayer, a lot of soul searching made me re-think my goals. Thank you Penn State, but I'm commiting the Fighting Irish!" Wimbush tweeted from his Twitter account, @BrandonW_7.

He wasn't the only one considering jumping ship to join Notre Dame.

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Linebacker also left

Four-star inside linebacker Josh Barajas from Indiana also commited to Penn State briefly before changing his mind in May and declaring his intent to join Notre Dame.

The 6-foot-3, 215-pound prospect was also considered by schools like Boston College, Illinois and Maryland, but decided to join the Fighting Irish's storied program instead.

Notre Dame now has 18 commitments with the addition of Winbush, who is the No. 2 ranked player in his position by His commitment came mere days after he visited the South Bend campus and obviously came away impressed.

Other school poached

But Notre Dame hasn't confined it's recruit pilfering to Penn State.

It's also targeted Michigan, which is going through a tumultuous season that has some people calling for head coach Brady Hoke's head — or, if not that, at least his job.

That question mark around whether Hoke will still be around by next year is causing some Wolverine commitments to start second-guessing their loyalties.

Fighting Irish coach Brian Kelly already landed Shaun Crawford, a former Michigan defensive back commitment. Now Darrin Kirkland Jr. and Tyree Kinnel, both current Michigan commitments, have reported contact with Notre Dame. 

The former visited the school in October, while the latter received an offer in September.

The result is a Notre Dame recruiting class that is currently ranked No. 16 in the country by ESPN, but could soon see a boost if they can continue poaching players from struggling schools like Penn State and Michigan.


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