Notre Dame defensive line coach Mike Elston talks about Vanderdoes

Notre Dame defensive line coach Mike Elston talks about Vanderdoes

[dropcap]C[/dropcap]all it wishful thinking. Perhaps its blissful ignorance. Or maybe its just a smokescreen.

vanderdoesRumors are rampant that 5-star Notre Dame signee Eddie Vanderdoes won’t be reporting to South Bend on June 16, and he’ll play for UCLA instead.

But if Irish defensive line coach Mike Elston knows anything about it, he’s not saying so — at least not publicly.

Elston, who spoke at a golf outing in Fort Wayne, Ind. on Tuesday, told Tony Krausz of the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette that he’s eagerly awaiting the arrival of an “excellent class” of incoming defensive linemen, Vanderdoes included.

“I’m excited about coaching those guys that we signed, and Eddie being one of them,” Elston said. “I’m excited about him reporting in June with his classmates, and I can’t wait to develop him into an excellent football player.”

The 6-foot-3, 305-pound Vanderdoes was one of the most dominant prospects in the 2013 recruiting class. Rivals.com rated him the nation’s No. 21 recruit overall and the No. 2 defensive tackle, but with his quickness and burst off the ball, he’s expected to get first look at defensive end.

The rumored reasons behind Vanderdoes’ supposed change of plans run the gamut. Some say he’s changed his mind and would rather stay closer to home. Others suggest the decision is Notre Dame’s, citing character concerns or grade issues.

Placer High coach Joey Montoya told the Joe Davidson of the Sacramento Bee on Monday that any rumors of character issues are bunk. He described Vanderdoes as “gold” and highly dependable, selfless teammate.

His father, Eddie Vanderdoes III, told Davidson by text message on Monday night academics aren’t a problem, either. Vanderdoes III stated: “One thing I can tell you is grades or eligibility is not and has never been an issue.”

He added, “let people speculate, but you will be the first to know, as always, when it’s time to let people know.”

While those comments suggest something is amiss, there are only a handful of people who really know. And at this point, none of those people are talking.

For more on the Vanderdoes situation in our report from Monday, click HERE.

Photo credit: Paul Kitagaki Jr. / Sacramento Bee

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