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Heading into playoffs, Top 75 CB talks Notre Dame


If you aren’t up on Clark Phillips III, you’re missing out.

Notre Dame offered the Top 75 junior cornerback out of La Habra, California in early September as Phillips III was four games deep into his breakout season.

Not only does Phillips III provide the type of coverage that leads to very few balls thrown his way, he’s been electric on the perimeter of the La Habra offense, racking up over 1,000 yards receiving and 17 touchdown catches over 10 games.

This is an exciting football player with boundless potential.

“Honestly, I’m all over the field if you were to ask coach (Frank) Mazzotta, my head coach and offensive coordinator,” Phillips III said. “He’ll tell you that wherever we can get him the ball in space and whenever we can get him the ball in key situations.”

With his elite speed, Phillips III draws attention as a slot receiver and return specialist. However, his upside at cornerback assures his spot on defense at the next level.

“Most schools that have offered me are recruiting me as a nickel back and a corner,” Phillips III said. “But, a lot of schools have built a new profound interest in me at receiver and other positions as well. Seeing my versatility and everything. But, there’s no doubt that I’m the best (at) corner and that’s what most of them are recruiting me as.”

With a strong dose of Pac-12 offers – Arizona, Arizona State, Oregon, UCLA, Utah, Washington, Washington State, and others – along with national offers, including Alabama, Auburn, Florida, LSU, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, and Texas A&M, competition for his pledge should be intense.

Still, the academic opportunity at Notre Dame stands tall in the eyes of Phillips III and his family – as does the undefeated record of the Fighting Irish.

“I’m super excited for Notre Dame,” Phillips III said. “I really expected it, speaking to Todd Lyght, we both had the same thoughts on the team. I thought that (Notre Dame) would be a top team and Notre Dame is proving my point. Proving what I thought to be true. Now they’re balling. A big win over Navy the other day. (Notre Dame) is really doing it.”

Being early in the process, timeframes are still in the works. But, a trip to Notre Dame is high on the agenda.

“I’ve been discussing (my recruitment) with my parents,” Phillips III said. “I haven’t really even given them a Top 10 yet, or even a Top 15. I’ve got some schools on the top of my mind. Notre Dame is always going to be up there just because of the prestigious way of the school and things like that. It’s always been a dream for me – the Fighting Irish – and things like that. So, I’m still learning, of course. But, I can’t give you a timeframe of my commitment date or a Top 10 or anything.”

After opening the season 0-4, Phillips III has led his program on both sides of the ball to a six-game win streak.

This week brings the first playoff matchup – a Nov. 2 CIF Southern Section showdown versus Notre Dame High School (7-3) out of Sherman Oaks

“It should be a pretty good game,” Phillips III said. “I have to watch film, I actually just texted my coach to watch some film. I’ll probably make some cut-ups of film and I expect it to be a good game and a dog fight. Of course, now it’s win or go home.”

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