Notre Dame gets the letter: Consensus four-star cornerback Jaden Mickey
Centennial High School; Corona, Calif.Measurements: 6-foot, 175 pounds.Accolades: A consensus four-star prospect, Mickey is ranked as the No. 20 cornerback in the class by rivals.com and the No. 181 overall recruit.
Other notable offers: Notre Dame has long lacked four-star cornerbacks, making pulling in Mickey over Oregon, Cal and Northwestern both a necessity and somewhat a surprise. The March commitment made Mickey the second four-star defender landed by Marcus Freeman after he arrived in January as the Irish defensive coordinator.
“After I was on the Zoom call with coach Freeman, I knew he was a good coach because of what he did at Cincinnati,” Mickey told Blue & Gold Illustrated. “It was amazing. I felt comfortable with him and [cornerbacks coach Mike Mickens] and thought I can fit in there.”
Projected position: Mickey prefers to play man-to-man coverage, which makes him an ideal fit for Freeman’s scheme, but at only 6-foot, he will likely work as the field (wide) cornerback, rather than work along the boundary.
Quick take: Mickey’s active hands will further his fit in Freeman’s aggressive scheme. Not only are they capable of picking off quarterbacks, they often disrupt receivers’ routes in his highlight film.
Short-term roster outlook: If Mickey’s talent translates at the collegiate level, there is little reason he could not crack the Irish rotation in 2022. Notre Dame has its starting cornerbacks in Cam Hart and Clarence Lewis, but little else is certain in the Irish secondary at the moment.
Long-term depth chart impact: Four-star cornerbacks have been a Notre Dame rarity for a few years now. Mickey could be a piece to bridging the gap between the Irish and the top tier of college football.
EARLY SIGNING PERIOD COVERAGE
Consensus four-star defensive end Aiden Gobaira
Consensus four-star safety Nolan Ziegler
Consensus three-star quarterback Steve Angeli
Consensus three-star defensive tackle Donovan Hinish, Kurt’s brother
Consensus four-star linebackers Jaylen Sneed and Joshua Burnham
Punter Bryce McFerson, former Wake Forest commit
Consensus four-star running back Jadarian Price
Tight ends Eli Raridon and Holden Staes
Consensus four-star defensive end Tyson Ford, the first commit to Marcus Freeman back in January
Cornerbacks Benjamin Morrison and Jayden Bellamy
Consensus four-star linebacker Niuafe Tuihalamaka, former USC commit
Consensus four-star receiver Tobias Merriweather, the only receiver in the class
Consensus four-star cornerback Jaden Mickey
Five offensive linemen complete Irish class of 2022, including quartet of four-stars