Notre Dame’s recruiting Class of 2019 got a little bit bigger this Thursday night — and it didn’t even require the use of a scholarship to do so — as specialist Harrison Leonard has committed to the Irish as a preferred walk-on. The 5-11/180 pounder out of Avon, CT visited Notre Dame back in mid September for the victory over Vanderbilt, and from that point he was basically just waiting for the green light to commit to the Irish.
— Harrison Leonard (@hleonard858) October 18, 2018
Recruiting Service Rankings
247Sports Composite– 3 star (.7978), #2433 overall, #14 K, #17 in CT
Kohl’s Kicking — 5 stars, #7 kicker
Harrison chose the Irish over other interest from Arizona, Connecticut, Oklahoma State, Princeton, Utah, Rutgers, Boston College, and Wisconsin.
I’m no expert on kicking specialists by any means, so it’s hard for me to really give an in-depth evaluation of Leonard’s ability. But it looks like he has a good leg. He makes a couple of ≈40 yard field goals in these highlights, and he routinely kicks it out of the back of the end zone on kickoffs — which would equal a touchback even by college standards.
Landing one of the top kickers in the country without using a scholarship is a pretty good deal. This is good insurance in case Doerer doesn’t progress well enough by next season — a scenario that is not looking completely unrealistic. I could definitely see a scenario in which Harrison sees the field early and earns a scholarship after his first year or two on campus.
Welcome to the Irish family, Harrison!