Film Study: Notre Dame safety commit Spencer Perry

Tyler James
South Bend Tribune

S Spencer Perry, 6-3, 202; Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy.

The numbers: Perry recorded 34 tackles and three tackles for a loss in his junior season at Auburn (Ala.) High, according to MaxPreps. The Tigers (4-7) lost in the first round of Alabama’s Class 7A playoffs. Perry has since transferred to IMG Academy.

The rankings: Rivals — Three stars, No. 39 safety. 247Sports — Three stars, No. 50 safety.


First impression: Perry is a hard-hitting safety who keeps everything in front him. He looks most comfortable running downhill making tackles. Perry has room for improvement in his coverage skills.

Strengths: Perry tackles more like a linebacker than a defensive back and seems to be always running toward the line of scrimmage rather than away from it. He has ideal size for a strong safety and can cover ground in a hurry. He changes directions smoothly and moves well from sideline to sideline. He diagnoses plays quickly in order to make tackles in the backfield all the way from his safety spot.

He did what? (:30) Perry reads run right away and takes a direct angle to the backfield. He avoids the blockers and meets the running back for a loss for a big collision before he can turn the corner … (1:35) Lined up in coverage over the slot receiver, Perry starts to backpedal at the snap. He changes directions while the quarterback sets to throw and meets the receiver with a hard hit as soon as he catches the ball.

Competition level: Perry’s Auburn team played against some of the top competition in Alabama. Five of the 11 teams on Auburn’s schedule finished ranked in the top 20 in the state according to MaxPreps. Many of the teams featured multiple FBS recruits with several headed to SEC schools. Perry will face top competition again as a senior when IMG Academy plays top teams from several states.

Left to prove: Perry possesses all of the measurable for an elite strong safety, but there isn’t enough variety in his highlight package to match the potential. He is barely challenged at all in the passing game on his film. Better work in coverage would likely give him a bump in the national rankings. Perry will need to prove that he can stick on receivers down the field to prevent big plays. He has great upside within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage, but can he be a reliable player on longer plays? He will likely be tested this season at IMG Academy. | 574-235-6214 | Twitter: @TJamesNDI

Notre Dame safety commit Spencer Perry competed in the Irish Invasion camp inside Notre Dame Stadium in June. (SBT Photo/BECKY MALEWITZ)