It’s about 900 miles from South Bend, Ind., to Norman, Okla., but that doesn’t mean Notre Dame and Oklahoma don’t wage battles on the recruiting trail.
Even though OU has tried to make a bigger imprint in the Midwest, none of the intense competitions between the Irish and Sooners are with Midwest recruits for the class of 2013.
There are certainly some good battles, however, including one fierce one for a top Arizona defensive back. A closer look at the top recruiting battles for 2013:
• Cole Luke (Chandler, Ariz./Hamilton, 6-0, 165, No. 33 CB)
It’s simple. Luke is down to OU, Notre Dame and Texas. He has already made his official visits to Texas and the Irish. All that’s left is OU and that one will be crossed off the list this weekend.
Since the beginning of his junior season, Luke has mentioned OU as one of his favorites. But this weekend will be his first visit to the campus. Coincidentally enough, the game will also give him another chance to see the Irish.
• Danny Mattingly (Spokane, Wash./Mead, 6-5, 218, No. 61 ATH)
The Sooners were high on Mattingly and he was one of their top targets for the class. The plan was initially for Mattingly to make an unofficial visit in the summer.
The Irish, however, made a big impression and snatched him up. Mattingly reiterated once again on Monday that he is all-Irish, all the way.
• Torii Hunter Jr. (Prosper, Texas/Prosper, 6-0, 172, No. 8 WR)
OU wide receivers coach Jay Norvell made a strong initial impression on Hunter, but the Sooners were unable to make much of a dent following the spring.
Once Hunter got a chance to see the Notre Dame campus and interact with the players and coaches, it was over. He wasted little time in committing to the Irish.
• L.J. Moore (Fresno, Calif./Central East, 6-0, 164, No. 27 CB)
Like Luke, Moore has already made an official visit to Notre Dame. He said he had a great time in South Bend. There have been some distance concerns, which puts both OU and Notre Dame in a tough spot for the four-star prospect.
If Moore did get swayed by the Sooners, he would be joined by teammate and fellow four-star defensive back Hatari Byrd. Byrd is also making an official visit to OU this weekend and will see the campus for the first time.
Other Notre Dame commits with OU offers: LB Jaylon Smith (Fort Wayne, Ind./Bishop Luers); LB Alex Anzalone (Wyomissing, Pa./Wyomissing); OT Hunter Bivin (Owensboro, Ky./Apollo); DE Isaac Rochell (McDonough, Ga./Eagles Landing Christian); TE Jacob Matuska (Columbus, Ohio/Bishop Hartley).