WR Austin Mack earns Notre Dame offer

South Bend Tribune

Three weeks in June resulted in three big offers for Austin Mack.

Following camp performances at Ohio State, Michigan and Notre Dame, the 2016 wide receiver prospect earned offers from all three football programs.

Offensive coordinator Mike Denbrock informed Mack of the Irish offer following the camp performance on June 24. Mack recorded a 4.49 time in the 40-yard dash and a 33-inch vertical jump that day.

“When coach Denbrock took me in and offered me, I was pretty stoked,” Mack said. “I couldn't have been any happier to receive it.”

The 6-foot-2, 205-pound prospect from Fort Wayne (Ind.) Bishop Luers is no stranger to Notre Dame. From the same school as Irish sophomore linebacker Jaylon Smith, Mack visited South Bend for a pair of games last season. The early interest from Notre Dame’s coaching staff hit a peak in June when Mack chose to participate in the camp rather than just visit.

“It looked a lot better for me to go out there and prove myself even more in person,” Mack said. “After running 40s, they were really on me. I got to run some routes in front of (head) coach (Brian) Kelly. I knew that I did really well.”

Mack didn’t claim any allegiances to a college football team growing up, but the Irish have been a frequent topic of conversation for Mack because of Smith and a group of friends rooting for the team. He’s looked to Smith for guidance on how to handle the recruiting process.

“It's a big connection because I look up to Jaylon a lot,” Mack said. “He gives me really good feedback on a lot of things. He helps me understand how to look into colleges for more details. I ask him questions about what he did when he was going through the same process. If I have a question about Notre Dame or anything like that, he helps me a lot.”

Smith’s freshman success with the Irish didn’t come as a surprise to Mack.

“It was great. I couldn't be happier for him,” Mack said. “I already expected that was going to happen just from working with him and seeing how talented he is.”

Mack will continue to receive attention at Luers as a successor in the recent string of athletic talent to come from the school. As a sophomore, Mack caught 57 passes for 805 yards and three touchdowns. His performances have earned him a four-star ranking from 247Sports. The recruiting service ranks him as the No. 24 wide receiver in the country and the No. 1 prospect in Indiana for the 2016 class.

Mack said the attention has come as a result of the work he’s done on route-running.

“My routes are some of the best around,” he said.

He plans to show off his talents to more schools throughout the summer. He’ll visit Michigan State soon with trips to Tennessee, Ohio State and Michigan in the works. He plans to make multiple Notre Dame home games in the fall.

By then his junior season will be underway. He’s hoping to add an impressive highlight reel to round out his resume.

"I want to be more of a playmaker,” Mack said. “That's one thing I'd really like to get on my highlights for the next come summer of recruiting.”

Notre Dame will have already laid the groundwork in his recruitment before more programs across the country can take a look.

Masina top five

A Notre Dame linebacker target released a top five Thursday, but the list did not include the Irish.

Osa Masina, a 6-4, 230-pound prospect from Salt Lake City, named UCLA, Michigan, Wisconsin, USC and Arizona State in his top group. The four-star recruit last visited the Irish in July 2013.

Rivals ranks Masina as the No. 3 outside linebacker in the 2015 class. 247Sports slates him No. 10 at the position. ¦ 574-235-6214 ¦ Twitter: @TJamesNDI

Austin Mack, a 2016 wide receiver prospect from Fort Wayne (Ind.) Bishop Luers, received an offer from Notre Dame following a June camp performance. (Photo provided/Student Sports)