When a major program loses a key recruit, Rivals.com takes a look at how big of a blow it is to the respective school, analyzing it from a local and national level. To quantify the “sting” of each decommitment, we assign a score from one to 10, with one being no big deal and 10 being a catastrophic hit.

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THE STORYLINE  

Darren Agu committed to Notre Dame in April but had never visited the school and did not make it to South Bend during the month of June.

It was still a big commitment, though, because Agu is a versatile 6-foot-6 prospect who could play either tight end or defensive end and is really just starting to scratch the surface of his ability. He grew up in Europe and played his first year of 11-man football last season.

But the Rabun Gap (Ga.) Rabun Gap-Nacoochee prospect backed off his pledge to the Irish in recent days, and with more than 30 offers Agu has plenty of options available.

Vanderbilt is one school that has been mentioned often when it comes to Agu’s recruitment, but others could be involved.

Notre Dame took a chance on the three-star prospect and wanted him to play defensive end, but after being committed for a while, Agu decided he would look elsewhere.

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  LOCAL REACTION  

“Dismissing the loss of Agu as inconsequential is a stretch, but so is thinking this is earth-shattering news for the Irish. Agu was a project as a defensive end who had a good bit of weight to put on and is still new to the game of football as he’s from the United Kingdom. But the upside for him is tremendous.

“Notre Dame defensive line coach Mike Elston has his position room stocked with young talent and already has two big-time prospects – Brenan Vernon and Keon Keeley – committed in the 2023 class, not to mention four-stars Tyson Ford and Aiden Gobaiara in the current cycle. Notre Dame is still in pursuit of four-stars Cyrus Moss, Anthony Lucas and Hero Kanu, too.” – Mike Singer, BlueandGold.com

Sting Factor: 5

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NATIONAL REACTION

“It is difficult to put a score on Agu’s decision to decommit and how much it stings Notre Dame because his ranking is more of a projection than for almost any other prospect in the 2022 class because Agu is so new to football. With his physical presence and what we’ve seen so far, Agu could be a very talented prospect who could play on either side of the ball. The high three-star would have been a very nice addition to Notre Dame’s class.

“But the Irish have already added some quality pieces along the defensive line and numerous prospects are still in the running to join the class. If Agu emerges as an elite player down the line, then this one will hurt a lot. But the Irish have some really good players locked in for the 2022 and 2023 classes, so this one shouldn’t hurt too much.” – Adam Gorney, Rivals national recruiting director

Sting Factor: 3



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