Notre Dame broke the seal on 2020 secondary recruiting today when Clarence Lewis became the 12th commitment in the class. The 6’1″, 185-pound New Jerseyan committed less than 24 hours after the conclusion of his official visit; safe to say the staff and the school made a big impression on him. At the New Jersey Opening regional in April he logged a 4.59 40 and a 4.2 shuttle, which he apparently backed up when the staff saw him in person this weekend. He’ll need some time to develop, but he has the length and athleticism the staff looks for in its defensive backs.
Recruiting Service Rankings
247 Composite — 3 star (0.8627 rating), #692 overall, #115 WR, #18 in NJ
247 Sports — 3 star (87 rating), #585 overall, #106 WR, #15 in NJ
Rivals — 3 star (5.6 rating), NR overall, NR position, #21 in NJ
ESPN — 3 star (77 rating), NR overall, #164 WR, #27 in NJ
IrishSportsDaily — 4 star (90 rating)
In addition to Notre Dame, Clarence Lewis holds offers from Boston College, Duke, Minnesota, NC State, Nebraska, Virginia, Virginia Tech, and West Virginia, among others.
Lewis mostly plays receiver for his high school, but there’s a decent amount of film as a cornerback as well; on both types of plays here, you can see some of the traits (heh) that interest Notre Dame’s defensive staff. Lewis measured 5’11.5″ at the Opening regional but I’m not sure that’s right, or at least if it is he plays bigger. He definitely has good length and I think a nice frame to add a little extra muscle. His long speed is very good, and he shows flashes of short-area quickness that make me think he can improve there with polish. He moves very easily, which is a good sign for his future coverage skills. And he’s certainly not afraid of contact.
You really can’t see much in terms of coverage technique; what there is looks sort of OK, but that’s not surprising for a guy who spends so much time on offense. He clearly has some stuff to work on. You know what he doesn’t have to work on? Finding the ball. Kid is an absolute ballhawk, and when he gets it he makes things happen. That might be my favorite part of this whole highlight reel. Guys like that tend to keep making plays at the next level – think Julian Love or Shaun Crawford. They just have a sense for what’s going on and a nose for the ball.
The 2020 depth chart should have plenty of opportunity available at corner. Troy Pride and Donte Vaughn will definitely be gone, and while Shaun Crawford will have a sixth year available I’m not sure he’d take it; also, Houston Griffith may move back to safety. Lots of stuff to shake out between now and then, but there will almost certainly be opportunity for a precocious youngster. I don’t think Lewis will be ready to push for reps that quickly, but who knows? Down the road, I think his athleticism gives him a very good ceiling and I could definitely see him as an upperclassman contributor or even a starter.
Welcome to the Irish family, Clarence!