Irish Recruits React to Weis

Scott Smith

Irish head coach Charlie Weis was named as Notre Dame's head coach on Monday and the new coach didn't waste any time getting on the phone with some of Notre Dame's top recruiting targets. What did these top prospects think of Weis?

Highland Park, Ill. linebacker committed to Notre Dame back in July. Smith has never wavered on his commitment despite the firing of former head coach Tyrone Willingham.

The 6-4, 220-pound Smith received one of the first calls made by new head coach Charlie Weis on Monday.

"He definitely made me very excited to play for him," said Smith of his first conversation with Weis. "He's a straightforward guy who just talks football. I really liked him."

We asked Smith what he and Weis talekd about?

"He talked about what he saw in the program and where he wanted to take it," Smith said. "He said he tailors his program around his player's strengths."

We also asked Smith about Weis' personality on the phone and if he thought he'd be an effective recruiter.

"It's pretty obvious he's not going to settle for anything less than returning ND back to the top of college football," said Smith. "Just talking to him, you want to play football for him. I really liked his demeanor on the phone. I think everyone else will if they want to play football."

What did he like hearing the most from the Weis conversation?

"He talked about his philosophy as a coach and how he wants his players to play. He said he likes nasty players who are football players. Guys that want to work hard and love to play the game," said Smith."

We also spoke with the father of Arkon, Ohio defensive end Lawrence Wilson. Eugene Wilson said his son also spoke with Weis on Monday.

"Lawrence went to bed. He had a late practice and he talked to coach Weis and then went to bed," said Eugene Wilson."

Eugene did say he felt the conversation with Weis went well.

"I think it went pretty well. He seemed pretty excited about it," Eugene said. "It was his first time talking to him so I think he was pretty impressed with him. He seemed to really like his attitude."

Lawrence Wilson officially decommitted from the Irish shortly after learning the news that former coach Tyrone Willingham had been fired. Weis didn't waste any time trying to get his message across to the Wilson family.

"Actually, coach Weis is going to come for an in-home visit this Saturday," said Eugene. "I don't know when. I think he's coming early."

The firing of Willingham hasn't been easy on the Wilson family.

"It's been a little frustrating. We thought we had this over with," said Wilson. "We're not in a big hurry to get this done because he's got basketball right now."

Eugene said a number of schools have been calling Lawrence and they've been listening.

"Everybody has been calling him<" Wilson said. "Notre Dame kind of put us in that situation. This guy (Weis) is going to have a lot of work to do."

Wilson also has a couple of other in-home visits lined up this week.

"Florida and Ohio State are coming this week. Michigan just called but we didn't get the chance to talk to him," Eugene said.

Comments: We've also heard Weis made a few more calls but we were unable to track those down and speak to the prospective recruits. Weis seems to know which recruits needs the most attention and this point and is working hard in reaching them. We'll keep following the latest with the new coach all week.

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