Notre Dame secured another huge commitment today when Montvale (N.J.) St. Joseph Regional four-star running back Audric Estime committed to play ball for the Fighting Irish. The 6-1, 215-pounder from the class of 2021 de-committed from Michigan State and found a home in South Bend.
This is a strong win for running backs coach Lance Taylor, special teams coordinator Brian Polian, and offensive coordinator Tommy Rees. Irish Illustrated was told a while ago that this duo loved Estime’s power, toughness, ability to get the extra yards after contact, and the fact that he’s one of the more complete backs in the country.
Estime had an outstanding senior year. He developed extremely well this year, as he rushed 127 times for 1,336 yards and 17 scores against some of the best competition in the state of New Jersey. He also showed off an ability to catch the football, as he accounted for 12 catches for 115 yards and two scores. All of that was done in six games.
247Sports National Director of Scouting Barton Simmons loves what Notre Dame is getting in Estime. He believes he has the chance to be a difference-maker at the next level.
“I thought he was a good player off of junior film but he seems to have really taken things to a different level as a senior,” said Simmons. “He’s got great size, has been incredibly productive and while he may not have rare long-speed, his forward lean and vision speaks to a player that would fit in really well in Notre Dame’s physical run game.”
In a feature from 247Sports National Director of Recruiting Steve Wiltfong with St. Joseph Regional head coach Dan Marangi, Estime is a talented back that has his best years of football ahead of him.
“I think he’s just matured,” said Marangi to Wiltfong. “He’s only turned 17, technically he could really only be a junior in high school. He’s really young in his class. Big jump in maturity there.
“He dedicated himself in the offseason and knew what he had to work on. The knocks on him, what they might of been, he really worked to improve those. It’s all come together. His workout regimen changed as far as working on his core and he’s been tremendous. He was also fighting a couple injuries sophomore and junior year and this year he’s been as healthy as you can be through a football season.”
In that feature from Wiltfong, Marangi added that Estime is a complete back. He will clearly fit in well at Notre Dame.
“I see a guy who can do everything,” said Marangi “He can be the bell cow, hand him the ball 30 times. He’ll pass protect, catch the ball, great hands, he can run between the tackles and he’ll surprise you when he makes one cut and he’s gone stretching the field. He’s running away from high ranked and quality defenders. How many guys want to get in front of him when he’s running full speed with a low pad level? He’s had a sensational senior season in which he’s shown more elusiveness in one on one situations and he’s running with more power in addition to being a breakaway threat.”
Per the 247Sports Composite Rankings, Estime is the No. 245 overall player in America, No. 12 running back nationally and No. 3 prospect in New Jersey from the 2021 class.