DT Brandon Tiassum joins Notre Dame recruiting class
Brandon Tiassum’s visit to Notre Dame on Sunday was already going well.
Then he got the look from his mother.
"Once (defensive line) coach (Mike) Elston and my mother started talking, she gave me that look like, 'This is the place you need to be,’” Tiassum said. “Once that happened, it was a wrap.”
Before he left campus, the 6-foot-4, 296-pound defensive tackle from Indianapolis Park Tudor gave his verbal commitment to Notre Dame.
“It fit perfectly with what I wanted in a university,” Tiassum said.
Tiassum didn’t take long to become Notre Dame’s ninth verbal commitment in the 2015 class after receiving an offer on May 30. He had been in touch with Elston often and planned to camp at Notre Dame this summer in hopes of receiving the offer. The Irish decided they didn’t need to wait.
“You can never have enough bodies up front,” said 247Sports director of recruiting Steve Wiltfong. “Notre Dame is at its best when its defensive line is dominant. Any time you add a guy that has a chance to add to that, it's a huge plus."
Tiassum becomes the first defensive line commitment in the 2015 Irish class. He initially projects as a three-technique in a 4-3 defensive front, the same position Sheldon Day is expected to play this fall.
"I bring length and quickness,” Tiassum said. “I'm like a taller Sheldon Day. I'm a guy that's quick off the ball, athletic, long, and I like to chase down the quarterback.”
247Sports slates Tiassum as a four-star prospect, the No. 21 defensive tackle in the 2015 class and the fourth-best recruit in Indiana. Rivals ranks him as a three-star prospect, the No. 24 defensive tackle and also No. 4 in the state.
"All the tools are there,” Wiltfong said. “When Brandon's a finished product, he has a chance to be a really good player. He's a big kid, has some good athleticism to him and can run. He's a guy that could be a good player on both sides of the ball. I know he's a defensive line recruit, but he could just as easily be an offensive lineman on the next level."
Tiassum’s college choice mirrors the decision he made to transfer from Ben Davis High School (Class 6-A) to Park Tudor (Class 2-A) after his freshman year. He attributes the balance of athletic and academic challenges that Park Tudor has given him as preparation for a school like Notre Dame.
On the field, he’s worked with Park Tudor defensive line coach Greg Middleton, a former Indiana University defensive end, to improve his game. He totaled 83 tackles, 11.5 sacks and four forced fumbles last season as a junior. In the classroom, he has taken steps to achieve a 3.3 GPA.
“Making the switch from Ben Davis to Park Tudor was hard,” Tiassum said. “Park Tudor is not the powerhouse football program that Ben Davis is, but academically it's a lot like Notre Dame. Academics come first and only the elite student athletes will come out of it and have success. Notre Dame and Park Tudor are similar in that way.”
Tiassum made Sunday’s visit with his mother and grandfather to receive more individual attention than his last visit for a junior day in March. The trio came to the conclusion that Notre Dame lined up with what they were looking for in a college. Tiassum chose Notre Dame over a number of offers including Miami, Louisville and Indiana.
"Once I received the offer, I just had to get up there and get a better look at what Notre Dame means,” Tiassum said. “Everybody knows who Notre Dame is, but I wanted to know what the Irish are truly about. I went up there, got a tour with coach Elston and (head) coach (Brian) Kelly and I figured this was the place I needed to be at."
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