Pieces of 2023 recruiting puzzle coming together for Irish men's basketball
One question about the recruiting fortunes/future of the Notre Dame men’s basketball program lingered as July became August and August became September and the fall evaluation/visit period got rolling.
They are going to get a few more guys, right?
The Irish answered that question – at least for now – late Thursday with their second commitment for the 2023 recruiting class. Head coach Mike Brey is a big believer that you can never have too many guards, so he got another with a commitment from high school senior Brady Dunlap, a 6-foot-7, 180-pound swingman from Studio City, Calif.
Ranked as high as No. 83 nationally (ESPN), Dunlap averaged 16.7 points, 3.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game for Harvard-Westlake School to earn All-CIF first team honors as a junior. Harvard-Westlake finished 25-4 last season. Dunlap, who took an official visit to Notre Dame the weekend of Sept. 17, also officially visited San Diego State earlier this month.
Colorado, Nebraska, Rice and Providence also were among his finalists. Earlier in the recruiting process, Dunlap’s list of schools included Arkansas, Illinois, Kansas, Loyola Marymount, Pepperdine and Wyoming. At one point, he was a 100-percent crystal ball projection commitment to Wyoming. He’s considered a three-star prospect by Rivals.com and a four-star prospect by 247Sports and ESPN.
Dunlap joins a recruiting class that also includes point guard Markus Burton from Mishawaka (Ind.) Penn High School. Burton committed to Notre Dame in late July to kickstart an important recruiting stretch. Burton was not ranked when he committed to Notre Dame. He’s now considered a three-star prospect (No. 126 overall) by Rivals and a four-star prospect (No. 115 overall) by 247Sports.
Both will make it official in early November when the early signing period opens.
The Irish have at least five scholarships to offer current high school seniors and/or college transfers for the Class of 2023. Notre Dame will lose five fifth-year seniors following the 2022-23 season.
Notre Dame needs guards. Notre Dame needs bigs. Notre Dame needs players – young and/or old – moving forward. With college players allowed to transfer and become immediately eligible and with one-and-dones still a possibility (J.J. Starling? Ven-Allen Lubin?), nobody quite knows how the Irish roster will look like for 2023-24.
We do know that Burton and now Dunlap will be part of it.
Dunlap will be the second player from California to play for Brey, set to start his 23rd season. In the fall of 2014, Brey secured a commitment from guard Rex Pflueger from Mater Dei. Pflueger played in a school record 141 games over five seasons.
Like Pflueger, Dunlap took a September official visit to Notre Dame. He also committed late on a Thursday night. Dunlap made his announcement via social media. Notre Dame first offered in late August.
Follow South Bend Tribune and NDInsider columnist Tom Noie on Twitter: @tnoieNDI. Contact: (574) 235-6153.