Dec 28, 2013; Bronx, NY, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish head coach Brian Kelly (center) looks on against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights during the second half of the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankees Stadium. Notre Dame Fighting Irish won the game 29-16. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Notre Dame uses 'Irish Invasion' to boost recruiting

Following the decommitment of Blake Barnett, many thought it was a severe blow to the overall status of the Notre Dame recruiting class. But Brian Kelly and the Irish staff didn’t miss a beat, picking up five oral commitments in an eight-day span over the last two weeks.

The Irish used their Friday night football camp, being called Irish Invasion, to try to win over recruits from the 2015 class, and some from the 2016 class.

The camp, which brought in about 60 prospects to campus, had a DJ to add some glitz and glam to the two-hour practice like camp.

While many of the recruits came in on buses, two clearly were a little more important in the eyes of the Irish coaches.

Running back Jacques Patrick and linebacker Justin Hillard were personally escorted in on Brian Kelly’s golf cart. Patrick is a four-star recruit from Orlando, Fla., while Hillard is a five-star prospect from Cincinnati, Oh.

The camp, which featured some current commitments, also gave the staff a chance to see prospects from the 2016 class. Two of the more noteworthy were quarterback Malik Henry, and running back Roderick Campbell, a St. Lois native who is starting to garner attention from several schools. The Irish recruiting class is currently ranked between 8th or 13th, depending on the source.

The Irish are hoping Friday night’s camp can help keep the good recruiting fortune rolling.

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