The undefeated Notre Dame Fighting Irish, ranked No. 3 in the country per the Associated Press Top 25 poll, continues to recruit at a high level. Head coach Brian Kelly and his staff have the No. 11-ranked class according to the 247Sports Composite Team Recruiting Rankings.
So, with only a few spots left, how will things wrap up for the Fighting Irish? Irish Illustrated brings you an update on one target from the class of 2019.
Roswell (Ga.) Blessed Trinity Catholic four-star linebacker J.D. Bertrand was once committed to the University of Georgia, but decided to open things up earlier this fall. At that time, the 6-1, 220-pounder quickly picked up offers from Florida, TCU, Florida State, Wisconsin and a few others. However, without an offer in hand, Bertrand quickly setup a visit for South Bend to watch the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in action against the Pittsburgh Panthers.
From everything I’ve been told, that visit couldn’t have gone better. Sure, Bertrand didn’t pick up an offer from Notre Dame and that was likely disappointing. However, Bertrand knew heading into the visit that it was unlikely to come his way yet. As we’ve reported for months at Irish Illustrated, numbers are very tight and there are only a couple of spots still remaining in Notre Dame’s 2019 class. With priority targets still on the table including four-star defensive end Isaiah Foskey and four-star linebacker Asa Turner, and both likely having a spot in this class until National Signing Day in February, it’s obvious why things are being taken a little slowly with Bertrand. Notre Dame has been recruiting Turner and Foskey for over a year now and hasn’t given up on those fronts. Now, if things change and the Irish have room in this class for Bertrand, I could see the staff making a move to land him. That remains to be seen.
Up next, per a source, Bertrand is expected to be on campus at Wisconsin this weekend for an official visit. Following his de-commitment from Georgia, the Badgers were one of the first coaching staffs to reach out and show him some love. I’m watching Wisconsin closely in this race, along with Florida.
After that, Bertrand is expected to return to Notre Dame for the Florida State game on Nov. 10. The fact that he has already scheduled a return trip to campus without an offer in hand shows exactly how high he is on the Fighting Irish. In all reality, and I’ve said this before, if he had the offer I’d expect him to be committed already. We’ll see how things progress in this one moving forward, but right now, if the Badgers coaching staff can make a big impression this weekend, I could see Wisconsin jumping to the top of his leaderboard and potentially doing enough to land him and get that second Notre Dame trip cancelled.
All that said, no matter what he does, things will still get very interesting if the Irish eventually find room to get him in this class at some point before Signing Day.
Per the 247Sports Composite Rankings, Bertrand is the No. 310 overall player in the country, No. 16 outside linebacker in the nation and No. 34 prospect in Georgia from the 2019 class.