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Football Recruiting: Weis nabs two Indiana recruits this weekend

Ken Fowler | Monday, March 5, 2007

Notre Dame landed its second and third verbal commitments of the Class of 2012 at the team’s junior day Sunday.

Both Fort Wayne wide receiver John Goodman and Mishawaka offensive lineman Braxton Cave said they would play for the Irish on the day former Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn worked out for NFL scouts on campus.

Goodman is a 6-foot-4, 185-pound junior at Bishop Dwenger High School. He caught 44 passes for nine touchdowns and more than 800 yards last season.

His frame, agility and complexion remind some of former Irish receiver Jeff Samardzija.

“The comparisons already start – its Jeff Samardzija all over again,” said Mike Frank, who covers Notre Dame recruiting for IrishEyes.com. “He’s got a very, very similar type of game that Jeff had. He’s a guy who’s faster than a lot of people think he should be. He’s really quick. You also don’t often see a guy his size move side to side the way he does.”

Cave, a 6-foot-4, 290-pound center at Penn High School, also had an offer from Michigan. Frank said Cave had scheduled a trip to Florida, where the Gators likely would have offered him a scholarship to play in Gainesville, but the Irish pre-empted the visit.

“I think he was going to get a lot offers,” Frank said of Cave. “I don’t know if he’s going to be a five-star guy, but he’ll be a four-star guy.”

Frank said he didn’t think it was a coincidence Notre Dame hosted juniors from around the country as the team’s former players prepared for the April 28-29 NFL Draft. NCAA rules prohibit the high school prospects from watching or participating in the workouts, but Frank said the presence NFL personnel and former player is a boon to recruiting for the Irish.

While both commits were in-state prospects, Frank said the juniors came from Texas, California and Nebraska, among other states. Frank said the commitments are a testament to the efforts of recruiting coordinator Rob Ianello, personnel development coordinator Dave Peloquin and Ron Powlus, formerly the director of personnel development and currently the team’s quarterbacks coach.

“They are so much further ahead this year than they even were last year,” Frank said. “They are the guys who get them in the position where they can offer all these players.”