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Friday, April 19, 2024
The Observer

Baton Rouge native Jaiden Ausberry signs with the Irish

Outside linebacker Jaiden Ausberry signed his National Letter of Intent on Wednesday joining Notre Dame’s fourth-ranked class of 2023. A four-star prospect ranked No. 205 nationally according to Rivals, Ausberry holds a 5.8 Rivals rating and stands as the 15th-best player out of Louisiana.

The competition for Ausberry’s signature was fierce with the linebacker receiving offers from 28 different schools. He went on official visits to Notre Dame, Michigan, Texas A&M and Auburn. His older brother Austin Ausberry signed at Auburn last year.

Another interesting wrinkle in Ausberry’s recruitment was his connection to Louisiana State University (LSU). University Laboratory School, where Ausberry goes to high school, is on LSU’s campus. His father, Verge Ausberry, played for the Tigers and is now an Executive Deputy Athletic Director at the university. Baton Rouge is also where former Irish head coach Brian Kelly now coaches. Ausberry’s recruitment to Notre Dame began under Coach Kelly, but as Freeman transitioned to the head coach role, he kept pursuing the outside linebacker as he had in his previous role.

The hire of defensive line coach Al Washington from Ohio State also aided Notre Dame’s efforts. Washington had been one of Ausberry’s lead recruiters at Ohio State. His move to join Freeman’s staff helped sell the young linebacker on the Irish.

On Aug. 4, 2022, Notre Dame’s efforts paid off as Ausberry announced his commitment to Notre Dame.

Ausberry was an outstanding talent in high school and is University Lab’s all-time leader in tackles, surpassing former Alabama linebacker and 2017 five-star recruit Dylan Moses. He was also named a semifinalist for the 2022 High School Butkus Award given to the nation’s best high-school linebacker. He shared this distinction with fellow Notre Dame 2023 signee and No. 45 overall recruit Drayk Bowen who went on to win the award.

Listed at 6-foot-2 and 210 pounds, Ausberry’s future at linebacker largely depends on his physical development. If he stays the same size, he will likely move to inside linebacker. If he’s able to grow and put on some extra weight, he may stick at outside linebacker.