Prospect rankings are about as important as what I had for breakfast seven weeks ago (so, you know, kind of important, but not really), but Notre Dame has a chance to finish at the very top.
While that's far from a crucial milestone, it's one that would deserve recognition during a time when Fighting Irish fans could use a little boost.
Yes, their beloved football team finished the year 12-1 in what was one of the best seasons in school history, but there are far more sour events that are fresh in the minds of the Notre Dame faithful.
For one, that 42-14 drubbing in the BCS National Championship probably didn't feel too good. I'm guessing neither did all the stories about Brian Kelly flirting with reeling NFL franchises.
Moreover, news of 5-star linebacker Alex Anzalone's de-commitment wasn't exactly a major help, either (via Rivals' Mike Farrell):
With that painful loss, the Irish fell from No. 3 in 247Sports.com's class rankings to No. 5.
But cheer up, Irish nation. Help is (maybe) on the way in the form of a frightening 6'4", 310-pound monster defensive tackle.
Eddie Vanderdoes, a 5-star stud out of Placer High in California, serves as one of the best remaining uncommitted prospects.
That wasn't the case for the past five months, as Vanderdoes committed to USC back in July, but he de-committed right after Christmas and the race for his services has heated up again.
According to 247Sports, Vanderdoes is deciding between Notre Dame, USC, Washington, UCLA and Alabama, and he will undoubtedly cause a celebration from whatever coaching staff secures his commitment.
Vanderdoes has a rare combination of size, strength, athleticism, quickness and smarts. By all accounts, he is going to be a nuisance for opposing offensive lineman at the next level, and that was easily apparent when he dominated the Army All-American Bowl earlier this month.
Notre Dame has had a rough week-and-a-half.
Adding Vanderdoes to an already stacked class that is led by studs such as Jaylon Smith, Hunter Bivin and Max Redfield would not only propel the Irish to the top of the recruiting rankings for the time being (Alabama and Florida can still add to their top classes, too), but it would serve as the ideal pick-me-up for a befuddled fanbase.
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