Notre Dame Football Recruiting: Top 10 Recruiting Misses of the Brian Kelly Era

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Five-star Running Back Will Shipley is another name on a star-studded list of players missed by Notre Dame football recruiting.

On May 5th, 5-star all-purpose back Will Shipley selected the football juggernaut of the past five years, Clemson. Depending on whether your glass is half-empty or half-full, missing out on another “difference maker” must feel another paper cut in a series of lacerations that Notre Dame football has caused since the end of the Lou Holtz era.

Shipley is not the first and will not be the last of recruits who do not fall Notre Dame’s way. If Notre Dame wants to land these types of blue chip recruits, this will happen frequently. However, it only takes one to make all of the difference.

This list covers the entire tenure of Brian Kelly’s recruiting in South Bend. Prior to Kelly’s reign, Charlie Weis (along with help from Brian Polian) landed Manti Te’o from Honolulu, Hawaii. Te’o led the Irish to an undefeated regular season in 2012. This demonstrates that one recruit can change the fortunes of an entire program. (Side note: Te’o’s fantastic rise and fall during the 2012 season landed me on ESPN. Here is a clip for your viewing pleasure.)

In other words, there is always hope. Perhaps, 5-star Quarterback Tyler Buchner is that player for the Irish. Notre Dame football recruiting creates optimism that the future will bring championship. Until Notre Dame wins the College Football Playoff, it is fun to complain about all the recruits that Brian Kelly and his staff whiffed on. The Athletic’s Pete Sampson recently discussed the top decommitments. Our list covers “misses” which is a slightly more expansive term but is limited to the classes of 2010 through 2021. Here is a top 10 list of biggest Notre Dame football recruiting misses of the Brian Kelly era.

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