2018 CB Kalon Gervin commits to Notre Dame after junior day visit

Mike Vorel
South Bend Tribune

Notre Dame failed to sign a cornerback in its 2017 recruiting class.

Less than two weeks after National Signing Day, the Irish's luck is beginning to change.

Consensus four-star 2018 cornerback Kalon Gervin, who visited South Bend for junior day last weekend, announced his verbal commitment to Notre Dame on Twitter on Monday morning.

"I am honored to say that I have committed to the University of Notre Dame!" Gervin posted. "I wanna say thanks to everybody that helped me throughout my process & Thanks to all the coaches that recruited me. God bless. God. Country. Notre Dame."

A 5-foot-11, 180-pound cornerback, Gervin is ranked as a four-star prospect, the No. 11 cornerback in the country and the No. 90 overall prospect in the 2018 class by Rivals, as well as a four-star recruit, the No. 16 athlete and the No. 158 overall player nationally by 247Sports.

“Good corners are much more difficult to get than safeties, so it’s a really good catch," said CBS Sports Network recruiting analyst Tom Lemming. "Notre Dame is desperate for big-time corners — guys that can come in and contribute right away. I think he’s that kind of a ball player.

"I’ve been following him since he was a freshman. He’s got really good cover skills. He was practicing against Donovan Peoples-Jones, one of the best receivers in the country, all last year. I just think it’s a great sign that Notre Dame can beat some big schools on a defensive player.

"He's exactly what Notre Dame needs."

Gervin's commitment also marks a reversal of fortune for Notre Dame at Detroit's touted Cass Technical School. In the 2017 recruiting cycle, the Irish missed on targets Peoples-Jones and safety Jaylen Kelly-Powell from the school. Both players ultimately signed with Michigan.

Gervin — who also had offers from in-state powers Michigan and Michigan State, along with many others — became the second Irish 2018 commit from the state of Michigan, joining linebacker Ovie Oghoufo.

“Battling Michigan and Ohio State is really important because Notre Dame sometimes settles for B-list guys, or they maybe they battle the rest of the Big Ten but not Michigan or Ohio State," Lemming said.

"Getting players like this sends a sign that Notre Dame is definitely going after A-list guys and they’re not going to settle for anything less. They’re going to bring in impact ball players, especially on defense where they’ve struggled.”

Gervin's pledge marks a personal achievement for Irish defensive backs coach Todd Lyght, who expressed interest in adopting Detroit as a recruiting territory during an interview on National Signing Day on Feb. 1.

Notre Dame currently has seven commitments in its 2018 class, five of which reside on the defensive side of the ball. All six of the previous Irish commits were on campus last weekend for junior day, and their presence apparently paid dividends. The class, with nearly a year remaining until signing day, ranks second nationally by Rivals and third by 247Sports.

Last month, the Irish lost the commitments of cornerbacks Paulson Adebo (who signed with Stanford) and Elijah Hicks (California) on back-to-back days, leaving the team vulnerable at the cornerback position.

Gervin's commitment isn't a solution, but it's certainly a start.

#GoIrish ☘️ #IrishBouND18 ☘️

313✈️574 pic.twitter.com/NF3BjBV3jG

— Kalon Gervin (@KalonGervin) February 13, 2017

Welcome to the family G! ☘️ https://t.co/axPyZCA24Q

— JUSTIN ADEMILOLA (@JustinAdemilola) February 13, 2017

#WeAreND

— Brian Kelly (@CoachBrianKelly) February 13, 2017

Congrats bro❕☘ That class getting crazy https://t.co/yszgFs1TXY

— Malik Vann❕ (@MalikVann7) February 13, 2017

Ayyyeee welcome to the family!!! https://t.co/hsOLAMxQMc

— Markese Stepp (@markese_stepp) February 13, 2017

@KalonGervin That's what I'm talkin bout happy for you !

— Isaiah Robertson (@AlMightyzay_1) February 13, 2017

MY DAWGGG ☘️ !! #TicToc#FightSzn#IrishBouND18https://t.co/CQ4ZzWsOEe

— ㅤ (@CjHo1mes) February 13, 2017

#IrishBouND18 . The D-Boys just got better this morning!

— Coach Mike Elko (@CoachMikeElko) February 13, 2017

Detroit area cornerback Kalon Gervin committed to Notre Dame on Monday after visiting campus last weekend (photo courtesy Student Sports).