Notre Dame Recruiting: Daelin Hayes commits to Fighting Irish


Notre Dame picked up a commitment from four-star linebacker Daelin Hayes and his versatility could help fill a spot at two positions.

One of the nation’s top prospects, Daelin Hayes (Ann Arbor, MI. Skyline) made his final decision on Thursday afternoon. During a ceremony at his school, Hayes, wearing Blue and Gold, announced that he would play his college football at Notre Dame, picking them over the Michigan State Spartans.

The 6’3”, 254-pound Hayes is the No. 121 player and No. 9 outside linebacker in the country and a five-star recruit, according to the 247Sports Composite Rankings.

Hayes originally committed to USC on July 26, 2014. He decommitted from the Trojans following Steve Sarkisian’s dismissal. Following his decommitment, many experts believed that he would immediately commit to Notre Dame. However, he opened up his recruitment.

The four-star linebacker officially visited Notre Dame, Ohio State and Michigan State. Despite Ohio State’s best attempts, the Buckeyes did not visit Hayes during the contact period, only Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly and Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio did.

More from Saturday Blitz

Most recruiting services list him as an outside linebacker. However, he may be a better defensive end than a linebacker. Hayes is an immediate impact player. Based on his size, Hayes could start out at outside linebacker or as a defensive end in pass rushing situations.

Hayes plans to enroll early and that will help Hayes get on the field early in his career and a head start in a college weight training program will also help figure out where he is going to play in the future. If Hayes cuts weight, he could see a career at outside linebacker. If he bulks up, he could be one in the rotation at end.

Notre Dame now has 19 commitments and the class ranks No. 17, according to the 247Sports Team Rankings.

Next: 50 Greatest College Football Rivalries of All-Time

Hayes is perhaps the best defensive prospect in Notre Dame’s class and could help replace Butkus winner Jaylon Smith.