Four-star tight end Cooper Flanagan commits to Notre Dame's 2023 recruiting class

Tyler James
ND Insider
Notre Dame tight ends coach John McNulty gained a verbal commitment from four-star tight end Cooper Flanagan, a 2023 recruit, on Thursday.

A new stage of recruiting opened up for the 2023 class Wednesday. 

Per NCAA rules, college coaches were allowed to start messaging high school juniors on Sept. 1 with various forms of recruiting materials. Notre Dame’s coaching staff started flooding the phones and inboxes of 2023 recruits with graphics and videos to build more momentum in the junior class. 

Less than 38 hours into the new communication period, Notre Dame landed its newest 2023 commitment when four-star tight end Cooper Flanagan announced his pledge to the Irish on Twitter. 

The 6-foot-5, 230-pound Flanagan became the first offensive player to join Notre Dame’s 2023 class. The Irish previously received commitments from a trio of four-star defensive recruits: defensive ends Keon Keeley and Brenan Vernon and safety Adon Shuler. 

Notre Dame has given its 2023 recruiting class a social media moniker of #IrishRising23, and that seems to be pretty accurate so far. Only Oklahoma, who has six commitments, has put together a class larger than Notre Dame’s four-pledge class. Both Rivals and 247Sports peg Notre Dame's class No. 2 in the country behind the Sooners. 

Flanagan, a junior at Concord (Calif.) De La Salle, visited Notre Dame in June. The Irish followed up with a scholarship offer Aug. 6. The tweet in which Flanagan announced his Notre Dame offer and thanked tight ends coach John McNulty, associate head coach Brian Polian and offensive coordinator Tommy Rees for the opportunity remained pinned to Flanagan’s Twitter account on Thursday until it was replaced by his commitment.

Flanagan picked the Irish from an offer list that included Washington, Michigan, Florida State, California and Utah. He was one of five tight ends to report scholarship offers 

“A very good early pickup again,” said CBS Sports Network recruiting analyst Tom Lemming. 

De La Salle remains one of the top football programs in California and the country, Lemming said, so Flanagan has been coached well. Notre Dame junior defensive end Isaiah Foskey is also a De La Salle product. 

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“He’s a big, physical kid,” Lemming said of Flanagan. “Kind of along the lines of a (former Irish tight end) Brock Wright but with quicker feet. He’s a powerhouse of a blocker. He plays on a run-oriented team, so he’s not quite the receiver that (Irish sophomore tight end) Michael Mayer is, but I’m sure he can learn that.  

“He’s a kid that was born to play for Notre Dame. He’s definitely one of the top 10 tight ends in the country.” 

247Sports slates Flanagan as the No. 8 tight end and No. 93 overall in the 2023 class. Rivals ranks Flanagan as the No. 17 tight end in the class and outside its top 250 overall. 

All four of Notre Dame’s 2023 commitments have come in the last three months. 

Notre Dame football’s 2023 verbal commitments 

TE Cooper Flanagan, 6-5, 230; Concord (Calif.) De La Salle 

S Adon Shuler, 6-0, 190; Irvington (N.J.) High   

DE Brenan Vernon, 6-5, 250; Mentor (Ohio) High  

DE Keon Keeley, 6-5, 230; Tampa (Fla.) Berkeley Prep 

Follow ND Insider Tyler James on Twitter: @TJamesNDI.