Notre Dame football recruiting: Title game gives Notre Dame a chance to cash in

ND Insider

Being in the BCS Championship game has given Notre Dame an enormous amount of publicity for six weeks, recruiting-wise. It should really help them for junior recruiting.

Winning the title gives an extra boost in which you're the team being talked about all the way until August. Since a lot of recruiting is almost done, between now and then it's a super boost, where if you're just diligent, you should have a top-five recruiting class if you're a school like Notre Dame or Alabama.

In recent years winning the title has given Alabama and Florida boosts, as it has USC. Winning the title gives a school a national bump. Alabama always does well in its home state, but winning the title gave them a national boost.

Kids all over the country now have their eye toward Alabama because the school is getting a lot of publicity. Kids may not know who the college stars were 10 years ago, but they do know who the top teams and the top players are, and with ND and Manti Te'o getting a ton of publicity, you would figure that every linebacker, and every player for that matter, in the country with grades is going to be looking at ND.

Notre Dame has a lot going for it -- tradition, facilities, academics, exposure -- and what it needed, the last piece of the puzzle to fall in place, was a national title-contending team, and now they have it for the first time in almost 20 years.

They've got to take advantage of it.

When coaches of teams at the championship level walk into schools, the doors fly open even quicker than they did before.

If Brian Kelly wins the title, it puts him in a different stratosphere, because he's the coach at Notre Dame. Sometimes it doesn't work that way. Look at Auburn. Gene Chizik got fired 22 months after he won the national title.

Winning a title at Notre Dame almost always makes you a legend, but you've got to follow it up with other good teams. That's the key. You don't have to win national titles, but you've got to be in the picture, and then you become a legend.

There won't be a lot of players left after the game but the ones who do remain are usually the great ones, and they've still got about three weeks remaining after the title game to go out there and recruit.

I'd bet that a lot of the top juniors in Florida tried to stop by ND's practices in Miami to watch. You can have the best of everything, but the thing that tops everything is being in the national title game. And what tops that is winning the championship.

If you go to the championship game and don't look good, it can hurt you. If you win or look very competitive, you're going to look great to recruits. But if you get blown out, all your good work can be somewhat for naught. Everyone is watching and can think that they don't belong with these teams, particularly in this situation in which a lot of the people in the south are saying that Georgia and Florida are better than Notre Dame.

The SEC has the mentality that they should be controlling the national championship game every year, so the I-told-you-sos will come out if ND doesn't look good. And that in turn could hurt ND's southern recruiting.

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly during practice at the Miami Dolphins training facility in Davie, FL, on Friday, December 4, 2013.