Priority Notre Dame Running Back Target To Check Out Campus
Memphis (Tenn.) Christian Brothers’ Dallan Hayden, the nation’s No. 159 overall player and No. 12 running back per Rivals, is in the Midwest this week.
On Wednesday, he spent time touring Ohio State’s campus. Tomorrow, the 6-0, 192-pound four-star player will spend several hours in South Bend, Ind. to check out Notre Dame.
Due to the ongoing dead period enacted by the NCAA due to the coronavirus pandemic, Hayden can’t spend time with coaching staffs at either school, but Hayden has long been considering the Buckeyes and Fighting Irish and wanted to experience both campuses firsthand.
Hayden announced a top four schools list of Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oregon and Tennessee on Jan. 1. Illinois is a newer addition to the race, having offered on Jan. 20. The Illini have a new coach in Bret Bielema and a family tie as Hayden's older brother, Chase, will play for them this year as a graduate transfer. He began his career at Arkansas under Bielema.
Penn State and Utah aren't giving up in Hayden's recruitment either.
The in-state Volunteers also have a unique selling point. Hayden’s father, Aaron, played running back for Tennessee in the early 1990s before spending four years in the NFL.
Hayden would like to take official visits before making his college decision.
“We’re in crazy times. I was going to start taking officials, but that got extended again,” Hayden told BuckeyeGrove.com on Wednesday. “I’m waiting to see what the NCAA decides in their next meeting ... Hopefully they’ll allow us to take officials, but I’m sure it’ll be limited numbers. I hope they work out something so I can take officials this summer.”
Rivals ranks Hayden as the No. 8 player in Tennessee, and the nation’s No. 12 running back and No. 159 overall prospect.
In just nine games during the 2020 season, Hayden rushed for 2,010 yards and 24 touchdowns on 232 carries.
Notre Dame landed its first running back commitment on Feb. 21 when Denison (Texas) High’s Jadarian Price picked the Irish. Position coach Lance Taylor and Co. would like to pair Price with another talented running back in the 2022 class.
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