When it comes to Notre Dame basketball recruit Joe Girard III, don’t judge a book by its cover.
In the world of basketball recruiting, looks aren’t everything. Notre Dame basketball offered a scholarship to Joe Girard III on March 25th. If you did a quick google search and looked at the young man’s picture with a puzzled look on your face, you wouldn’t be the only one. If you then clicked on his 247sports.com profile and were again underwhelmed, it’s OK.
Girard III is a 3-star kid from NY who stands at 6’1,165 lbs and looks like an Eagle Scout. What his profile does not tell you is that he is the most prolific scorer in the history of New York State. He recently surpassed Lincoln High legend and current Indiana Pacers wing Lance Stephenson for the honor. That record stood at 2,946 points.
The all-time leading scorer at my high school didn’t even get to 1500 points.
It should be noted that before he broke Stephenson’s state record, he broke the Glen Falls High School scoring record that was held by none other than former BYU superstar Jimmer Fredette.
Girard has managed to accomplish that feat and is only a Junior. That’s correct.
He is a combo guard in the 2019 class that just wrapped up a season in which he averaged over 50 points per game as he continues to obliterate that scoring record.
Notre Dame has joined the masses in offering JG3 (can we coin that now and give me credit?) whose offer list has blown up this winter/spring to include Duke, Michigan, Syracuse, Ole Miss, Ohio State, Boston College and Oklahoma just to name a few. He has already unofficially visited Duke, Syracuse, Boston College and Ohio State.
Landing the sharp shooting New Yorker would also help fill the void left by graduating point guard Matt Farrell. There is currently no point guard signed to Coach Mike Brey’s 2018 recruiting class, though it’s safe to assume Temple Gibbs will handle that responsibility in the short term.
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Right now his Crystal Ball has Duke as the heavy favorite. It is still very early though and they are always considered the favorite as soon as they offer. While Jon Scheyer is the Duke assistant recruiting Girard, you have to wonder about the 2019 Duke recruiting cycle as Chris Carrawell replaces Jeff Capel on the Blue Devils bench.
Also something to remember is that the crystal ball is a tool. It can never be taken as 100% correct or predictive, as surprises become more and more plentiful on decision day. It is fair to assume that some Clemson fans are still crying in the shower over the Zion Williamson decision.
If Irish fans are interested in watching this young man play, you can find him on the EYBL Circuit with the Albany City Rocks. His teammate, Isaiah Stewart, is also a player to watch. They will most certainly be at the Peach Jam in July.
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I expect Notre Dame to be a significant player in Girard’s recruitment. Given how recently the young man has blown up, I would expect him to either jump on Duke’s offer early or wait until next spring. The longer this plays out, the better it is for Notre Dame.