Four-star offensive lineman Alex Bullard attended the event with his father, who heard about Ismail coming to the area. A family friend invited the two of them.
“He was talking about his whole experience at Notre Dame, and through his lifetime,” the 6-foot-4, 270-pound Brentwood Academy standout said. “He really just said Notre Dame was the only school he grew up knowing, and that was where he always wanted to go. He said how great the school is, and the great education there, and you’re going to be surrounded by great people.”
Bullard will soon be surrounded by some of those great people Ismail was talking about. This week, he and his father will make their second trip to the Notre Dame campus in less than two months. They were both in town for the Irish spring game in April.
“I just want to get a better feel for the school, and see some things I didn’t get a chance to see when I was up there for the spring game,” Bullard said. He picked up his Notre Dame offer on that trip, and currently has around 20 to sort through. “I want to check out the weight room and meet the strength and conditioning coach.”
Bullard will travel to Ann Arbor on Wednesday night, and leave for Notre Dame on Thursday morning. He will depart for home on Saturday morning.
During the current recruiting evaluation period, Notre Dame offensive coordinator Mike Haywood and offensive line coach John Latina dropped by the school on two separate occasions to see Bullard.
“Coach Latina came to see me practice, and when I called him he said he liked what he saw and that he was very impressed,” Bullard said. “I’ve been building a relationship with him and coach Haywood.”
While Bullard tries to call both Haywood and Latina once a week, those aren’t the only two people educating him on Notre Dame.
“There is a judge in Nashville that graduated from Notre Dame, and my dad knows him, so I got a chance to talk to him about the school,” Bullard explained.
Bullard plays left tackle for Brentwood, but the Irish are recruiting him as a guard. This past season, he had 55 pancakes and graded out at a 92 percent. Besides the Irish, he holds offers from the likes of Tennessee, Alabama, Michigan, Florida and Oklahoma.
“I’m still researching schools,” Bullard stated when asked if he has any favorites.
However, Notre Dame has to definitely like its current position with Bullard.
“Just the academic prestige, just the prestige they have,” Bullard said. “Graduating from there, you can get a good job anywhere. It’s the total package basically.”
Just like Ismail said at dinner.