InsideNDSports - Notre Dame lands commitment from 2023 four-star DL Boubacar Traore
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Notre Dame lands commitment from 2023 four-star DL Boubacar Traore

Four-star defensive end Boubacar Traore.
Four-star defensive end Boubacar Traore. (Rivals Photo)

Boubacar Traore had long been verbally committed to Boston College when Notre Dame offered the 2023 defensive line recruit last October.

Traore gave his initial pledge to the Eagles on Aug. 5, 2020. When he ditched his Boston College commitment in March of this year, all signs pointed to Notre Dame as Traore's future destination.

The 6-foot-4, 254-pound Traore completed his flip to the Irish on Wednesday, when he announced a new commitment to Notre Dame following a two-day campus visit.

The Irish didn't stop pursuing Traore through the defensive line coach transition from Mike Elston to Al Washington. The four-star recruit proved to have too much tantalizing talent to ignore. Rivals ranks Traore as the No. 16 weakside defensive end and No. 223 overall in the 2023 class.

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Traore became the first defensive line commitment for Washington in the 2023 class. Washington inherited highly touted defensive ends Keon Keeley, a five-star recruit, and Brenan Vernon, a four-star recruit. Washington also added his first 2024 defensive line commitment on Saturday, from four-star defensive end Brandon Davis-Swain.

Both Traore and Vernon could have some position versatility in college as a big end or defensive tackle in Notre Dame's defense. Washington and defensive coordinator Al Golden have embraced that kind of flexibility with the current roster, so it's not surprising to see that reflected in Notre Dame's recruiting classes.

The Irish are still in pursuit of a pair of four-star defensive tackles: Jason Moore and Devan Houstan. The latter visited Notre Dame in January. The former attended Notre Dame's victory over North Carolina last October. Houstan seems more likely to make a commitment decision sooner than Moore.

Traore gave the Irish their fourth commitment in the last nine days starting with four-star wide receiver Braylon James on April 19. Davis-Swain became Notre Dame's first 2024 commitment Saturday. Then four-star offensive lineman Sam Pendleton committed to the Irish on Monday.

The addition of Traore pushed Notre Dame's 2023 class of 11 commitments back into the No. 1 spot in the country. The Irish have been jockeying for the top spot with Texas Tech and its abnormally large recruiting class at this stage of the cycle. The Red Raiders have 19 commitments, but 13 of them are three-star recruits. All of Notre Dame's 11 commitments have at least a four-star ratings.

Notre Dame lost a commitment from four-star cornerback Justyn Rhett before its recent recruiting tear. Rhett has since committed to Georgia and its third-ranked class in the country.

Traore comes from an athletic family. His older brother, Badara, is a 6-7, 320-pound offensive lineman for the Jacksonville Jaguars who finished his college career at LSU after beginning it at ASA College. Another brother, Mohamed, averaged 13.3 points per game last season as a freshman basketball player at Division II Franklin Pierce.

Their parents — Bakary Traore (father) and Rouguiatou Kaba (mother) — grew up in the African countries of Mali and Guinea, respectively.

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