Four-star CB Paulson Adebo drops Notre Dame commitment

Mike Vorel and Tyler James
South Bend Tribune

What a difference a couple weeks make.

In late December, while practicing for the Under Armour All-America Game, versatile four-star 2017 recruit Paulson Adebo appeared comfortable with his commitment to Notre Dame.

“Teams have bad seasons, but the thing that drew me to Notre Dame, it wasn’t necessarily the records or anything,” Adebo said of sticking to his pledge despite the 4-8 season in 2016. “It was just the potential to be a good football team and to have a great academic degree.”

Now, it appears Adebo will not pursue either of those things — at least, not in South Bend.

The 6-foot, 180-pound Adebo — who was committed to Notre Dame as a cornerback but also has the ability to play wide receiver — has dropped his Notre Dame commitment, a source confirmed with the Tribune. Irish247.com first reported the news. Adebo informed other Notre Dame commits of his decision Monday morning. He did not respond to Tribune requests for comment.

A product of Mansfield, Texas, Adebo is ranked as a four-star recruit by both Rivals and 247Sports. Rivals considers him the No. 30 cornerback in the 2017 class, while 247Sports lists him as the No. 27 cornerback. He holds offers from the likes of Stanford, Arkansas, Baylor, Georgia, LSU, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Oregon, TCU, Tennessee, Texas and many more.

In his senior season at Mansfield High School in 2016, Adebo racked up 46 tackles and three interceptions on defense, while leading his team in catches (25) and receiving yards (494) on the offensive side. He did the same as a junior with 41 catches for 730 yards and 11 touchdowns in a run-heavy offense.

The now-former Irish commit caught two passes for 20 yards and added a 23-yard punt return in the Under Armour All-America Game on Jan. 1.

Adebo's exit adds to the trend of a rapidly shrinking commitment class for Notre Dame. Wide receiver Jordan Pouncey, linebacker Pete Werner, defensive lineman Donovan Jeter and defensive end Robert Beal have all previously withdrawn their Irish commitments. The last four have come since the start of the 2016 season.

Without Adebo, Notre Dame has 16 verbal commits in 2017 and just two commits from defensive backs — safety Isaiah Robertson and cornerback Elijah Hicks.

Notre Dame's 2017 recruiting class currently ranks 13th nationally according to both Rivals and 247Sports. The Irish spent time inside the top 10 earlier in the recruiting cycle.

In the immediate wake of Adebo's de-commitment, Robertson ominously tweeted, "Just complete and utter disappointment right now."

Notre Dame running back commit C.J. Holmes also tweeted, "This is starting to get just a little bit out of hand...."

Both Robertson and Holmes are set to enroll at Notre Dame next week.

The Irish didn’t waste much time in targeting a new cornerback recruit. On Monday afternoon, TCU commit Noah Daniels reported a new offer from Notre Dame.

The 6-0, 190-pound senior from League City (Texas) Clear Creek has been committed to the Horned Frogs for less than a month. He was previously committed to Baylor.

Daniels, a three-star recruit, played a number of different positions on offense in addition to cornerback this past season. He rushed 38 times for 197 yards and four touchdowns and caught four pass for 89 yards and one touchdown.

Rivals ranks Daniels as the No. 53 cornerback in the 2017 class. 247Sports slates him No. 92 at the position.

Notre Dame cornerback commit Paulson Adebo has been selected to play in the 2017 Under Armour All-America Game. (Photo courtesy of Intersport/Under Armour All-America Game)