Four-star tight end Mike Heuerman of Barron Collier High (Naples, Fla.) knew Notre Dame would be different than other campuses, and during his visit he saw it first-hand.
He also saw it through a unique set of eyes as Irish coach Brian Kelly was the one who led him around campus.
“It was special because he doesn’t do that for many people,” Heuerman said. “He said he’s only done it once or twice before. It’s real cool to see that.”
The 6-foot-4, 220-pound Heuerman was on campus to watch practices March 30 and March 31, and his focus was on the usage of the tight ends.
“I was walking around with (director of personnel) Tim McDonnell and we shadowed the tight ends the whole time,” Heuerman said. “It was real good to see the way they use Tyler Eifert and the other tight ends.
“I think one time they had a four tight end site, and there’s just some ridiculous opportunities when it comes to using the tight ends and getting the ball in their hands.”
And Notre Dame’s reliance on the tight ends will definitely come into play when Heuerman decides from LSU, Miami, Ohio State and Notre Dame in a few weeks.
“Obviously, it will because those are things that will definitely open your eyes and are big-time factors,” Heuerman said. “You always want to have the ball in your hands. Personally, I always like to have the ball. I also love to block.”
Heuerman originally planned to make his announced April 23, which is two days after he visits Ohio State to watch his brother, Jeff, play in the spring game.
However, he is now talking about making an announcement with his brother in attendance, so April 27 is a more likely target.
He added all four schools are equal, and one or two were not standing out, but he does talk to Notre Dame’s staff more than any other staff.
“I would probably say I talk to them a little bit more, but I really stay in touch with Miami and Ohio State pretty well,” Heuerman said. “I would I talk to Notre Dame just a little bit more.”
Heuerman isn’t talking about one coach, either. He talks to many of the offensive staff members.
“I’m real close with the coaching staff,” he said. “When it comes to coach Kelly, (assistant) coach (Tony) Alford, (assistant) coach (Chuck) Martin, (tight ends) coach (Scott) Booker – my offensive coaches – we really talk on a daily basis.
“There’s really not a minute that goes by where I’m not in touch with one of them. Coach Alford, I’m in touch with him four or five times a day. I’m real tight with the coaches there.”
As for the visit to campus, Heuerman came away impressed.
“Notre Dame is a special place,” he said. “I got there and definitely realized that. Everybody always talks about how it’s a special and different place, so it was great to see that.”