SIGNED: DE Isaiah Foskey
Concord (Calif.) De La Salle defensive end Isaiah Foskey has publicly announced he has signed with Notre Dame.
Check out more about Foskey below including how his recruitment played and analysis.
Rivals: 4.0 stars, No. 15 weakside defensive end and No. 42 player in California.
BGI Grade: 4.0
Upside Grade: 5.0
• Participated in the 2019 All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas.
• 2017 & 2018 All-USA California first-team defensive selection by USA TODAY High School Sports.
• Part of The News Tribune’s 2019 Western 100, which ranks the top 100 prospects in the West.
• San Francisco Chronicle 2018 All-Metro first-team defense selection.
• 2018 All-Bay Area News Group defensive team selection
Power Five Offers: Alabama, Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, Clemson, Colorado, Florida, Kansas, LSU, Miami, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oregon, Oregon State, Penn State, Tennessee, Texas, UCLA, USC, Utah, Washington
It was a long road for Notre Dame in terms of landing Foskey, but the Irish were able to pull it off.
Notre Dame offered Foskey all the way back in May of 2017, but there never seemed to be a ton of traction between the two sides. Foskey stated he had interest in the Irish, but did not visit during the fall of 2017 through the spring of 2018.
However, special teams coordinator Brian Polian and company kept working on the talented two-way athlete and eventually convinced him to take an unofficial visit in late July this past summer.
It seemed tight end would be the spot for Foskey on the next level, but following that trip and moving toward his season things started trending to defensive end. Notre Dame left a strong impression on Foskey during his time in South Bend, and the four-star said it opened his eyes a bit as he did not know too much about the program beforehand.
Foskey set up an official to Notre Dame for the Stanford game not too long after and on September 5, Foskey narrowed his recruitment down to the Irish, Cal, Washington, Michigan, and Ohio State.
Notre Dame again gave Foskey a lot to think about during his official after getting to the atmosphere on a game day. The Irish appeared to be in the driver's seat following that visit and never looked back.
Foskey continued to state throughout the process he would take additional visits and not announce a decision until the February Signing Day. Those visits ultimately never occurred as Foskey was locked in to being part of the Irish.
• Helped lead De La Salle to two-straight CIF Open Division Bowl championship game appearances.
• Ran track during the 2017 outdoor season (sophomore).
The incredible depth at defensive end might result in a redshirt for Foskey, but his combination of length, natural power and athleticism will give him a shot to make an early impact.
The first thing that stands out about Foskey is his size. Foskey measured in at 6-5 and 233 pounds at the Nike Football The Opening Regional in San Francisco last March, and he still looks thin despite already being over 230 pounds. Give strength coach Matt Balis a year or two to work with this young man and his body is going to explode. Foskey could easily grow into a 260-pound athlete that still looks on the thin side, has incredibly long arms and gets even more explosive than he already is.
His size is important beyond just how much muscle, strength and mass he can gain. Part of his elite grade for size and frame comes from his length, which is exceptional for the drop spot. Foskey is a long-limbed athlete, and when his hand play is correct opponents have an extremely difficult time getting into his body. His ability to keep blockers at bay allows him to get off and make a lot of plays on the ball.
Foskey was initially recruited as a tight end by many schools, and the ball skills and feel for the pass game he displayed as a tight end should prove beneficial for him as a coverage player at the drop spot. Combine that with his length and he brings exciting upside as a coverage player in the Irish defense.
The second thing that stands out about Foskey is his strong all-around game. We haven’t seen him in coverage, but the traits discussed above project well for the position. What we have seen from him is the ability to be stout against the run and the ability to rush the quarterback. Despite his lack of girth, Foskey is a strong run defender at the prep level. This is due not only to his length and top-notch athletic skills, but also to his strength and motor. He is strong at the point of attack and does a good job shedding blocks when he ball carrier comes his way. Opponents spent a lot of time running away from him at De La Salle.
His pass rush needs more work from a technical standpoint, but the tools he showed in high school are outstanding. Foskey gets out of his stance quickly and gets upfield in a hurry. His long strides mask just how fast he gets around the edge, although he will need to let loose more and just fly off the ball better.