2022 DE Aiden Gobaira Commits To Notre Dame
Chantilly (Va.) High defensive end Aiden Gobaira announced his commitment to Notre Dame Saturday, giving the Fighting Irish their sixth member of their 2022 recruiting class.
Gobiara’s pledge comes just a few days after he took a visit to Notre Dame.
“Why not Notre Dame is the question, really” Gobaira said. “You have a great academic school that’s in the top 20 in the country, you have a football program that was just in the College Football Playoff. It’s just the best of both worlds.”
The 6-6, 235-pound Gobaira arrived in South Bend on Monday and visited through Wednesday. He couldn’t meet with the coaching staff because of the NCAA’s recruiting dead period, but the 6-6, 230-pounder saw all he needed to be able to make a decision.
“This most recent visit was about, ‘Do I see myself living here, do I see myself walking to class here?’” Gobaira said. “It was amazing. It was home feeling. Having Chicago only an hour and a half away, seeing the people around, they were just nice people. We had conversations with all these random Notre Dame students and they were all so friendly.”
Penn State was considered the favorite to land Gobaira for several months, but the Irish pulled off the upset for the lengthy pass rusher. Notre Dame plans to use Gobaira, a three-star recruit, as the vyper defensive end position.
“Sometimes I’ll be playing two-point, sometimes I’ll be playing three-point,” Gobaira said. “Most of the time I’ll be off the edge in a two-point stance.”
Notre Dame defensive line coach Mike Elston offered Gobaira on May 5, 2020, and they built a strong relationship from there. Irish defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman joined the Irish staff in January, and one of the first prospects he connected with was Gobaira.
“I love Coach Freeman,” Gobaira previously said. “He’s a really energetic coach who really seems like he knows what he’s doing. I can’t wait to keep talking to him in the future. He’s a great coach.
“Coach Elston is also a great coach. I’ve been on the phone with him since May; we’ve built a pretty good relationship. I’ve heard about all of the defensive linemen he’s developed. He’s a good, hands-on [teacher] and develops players for the league [NFL].”
Arizona State, Boston College, Duke, East Carolina, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisville, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, Old Dominion, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Syracuse, Vanderbilt, Virginia and Virginia Tech also offered Gobaira.
Gobaira was a hidden gem when Virginia Tech became the first school to offer on April 10, 2020. Virginia quickly followed suit three days later, and by June, Gobaira was already at a dozen scholarship offers.
He joins Groton (Mass.) Lawrence Academy offensive tackle Ty Chan, St. Louis John Burroughs defensive end Tyson Ford, Milton (Ga.) High tight end Jack Nickel, Zionsville (Ind.) High offensive lineman Joey Tanona and Grand Rapids (Mich.) Central Catholic linebacker Nolan Ziegler on Notre Dame’s 2022 commitment list.
Rivals ranks Gobaira as the No. 16 player in Virginia and the nation’s No. 26 weak-side defensive end.
“Gobaira is a big, athletic defensive end with a lot of room to fill out his frame,” Rivals.com east coast analyst Adam Friedman said. “He plays with a lot of physicality, but his speed and balance are what has really intrigued college coaches. Gobaira's ability to get off the line quickly and his outstanding motor gives offensive linemen problems.”
This story has been updated.
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