Rover recruit Shayne Simon visiting Notre Dame on Thursday
Few recruits in the 2018 recruiting class may fit the description of a rover in Mike Elko’s defense better than Shayne Simon.
That’s how Simon, a 6-foot-3, 210-pound safety at Jersey City (N.J.) St. Peter’s Prep, ended up with a Notre Dame scholarship offer less than a month after Elko officially became the new Irish defensive coordinator.
Head coach Brian Kelly, recruiting coordinator/defensive line coach Mike Elston and linebackers coach Clark Lea each visited St. Peter’s Prep in January. That’s because the school is also home to 2018 defensive line commits Jayson and Justin Ademilola. The Irish also recruited quarterback Brandon Wimbush out of St. Peter’s Prep.
On Thursday, Notre Dame will get its chance to impress Simon when the safety recruit visits the Irish. Simon also said he plans to visit Ohio State on Friday, Stanford on Saturday, UCLA on Monday and Michigan on Tuesday.
Simon plays strong safety for St. Peter’s Prep, but he’s also been asked to play near the line of scrimmage like a linebacker. That’s led to recruiting services to peg him as an outside linebacker. Both skill sets are utilized at rover.
Rivals ranks Simon as a four-star recruit and the No. 9 outside linebacker in the 2018 class. 247Sports slates him as a three-star recruit and the No. 23 outside linebacker.
"He's really good," said CBS Sports Network recruiting analyst Tom Lemming. "He's very talented and very athletic. He came on strong last year. Heading into last year, he was a bit of a suspect. Now he's turned into a big-time player."