On September 1, the lines of communication will be open between college coaches and prospects in the 2020 class.

With that, through the fall and moving forward, we’ll see the board expand far beyond the current 65 total offers.

Through evaluating film and sizing up prospects, here’s a list of 2020 recruits who I’ll be tracking through the fall – athletes who could fit the Irish, all of which have already heard from Notre Dame staff.

RB – Sam Adams

Teammate and classmate of priority wide receiver recruit Gee Scott Jr., Sam Adams II is creating national buzz with his development over the last year.

The 6-foot-2, 200-pound running back out of Washington visited Notre Dame for the home contest versus North Carolina State in 2017, leaving South Bend with a high opinion of the Irish.

“One-hundred percent, when I visited for the game, it was amazing,” Adams II said. “With all the history there too, that would be amazing to get that offer and possibly go there.

“The history of Notre Dame is the biggest thing that I saw. I loved how everybody from the area came out to watch them and everybody was so supportive of them – even the recruits. When I was there, people were hollering at us, telling us, ‘you guys have to come here. It’s great here.’ I could feel the energy and just feel that everyone is family there. That’s big-time for me.

“Basically, from there, they said they’d be in touch. Every once in a while, I hear from Notre Dame.”

The Top247 running back currently holds eight offers while several programs are showing interest.

“Right now, Texas, Texas A&M, Cal, Oregon State, Oregon, UCLA, USC, Colorado, Arizona, San Diego State, Utah – those are the big ones (showing interest) at this moment,” Adams II said.

For Adams II, he has a great support system with his father Sam Adams in his corner. Adams was an All-American defensive tackle at Texas A&M before being drafted No. 8 overall in the 1994 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks. Adams was a three-time Pro Bowl selection.

Keep your eye on Adams II. The potential is certainly there.

WR – Brenden Rice

Arizona four-star wide receiver Brenden Rice is loaded with college potential.

The 6-foot-3, 195-pound rising junior has an excellent blend of ability, creating a capable big-target in the short-to-intermediate game while having legitimate deep ball speed.

Rice’s ability to stretch the field, track, and come up with the football on verticals is clearly displayed in his sophomore Hudl highlight film.

Notre Dame has been in contact with Rice, sparking his interest.

The Irish aren’t foreign to Rice as he’s a close family friend of former Notre Dame cornerback Cole Luke – also from Arizona.

Arizona, Arizona State, Iowa State, Louisville, Oregon, Oregon State, Texas A&M, and Utah represent his early offers.

According to the four-star wide out, he would “definitely, without a doubt” consider the Irish if he were to earn an offer.

“I want to get out there soon to see it for myself,” Rice said. “I can’t wait.”

Drop end - Jaheim Thomas

When looking through the list of tall, long, athletic edge rushers who can get after the quarterback in the Midwest 2020 talent pool, Cincinnati (Ohio) Princeton outside linebacker Jaheim Thomas stands out among the top prospects who fit the drop end position at Notre Dame.

Notre Dame is well-aware of the four-star prospect.

“I’ve been talking to coach Mike Elston for a long time,” Thomas said. “During the school year, he came by my school. He likes me a lot, basically. He likes my speed and my length and my size.

“I like Notre Dame. When we took a visit up there, I enjoyed it a lot. The coaches were cool. They were friendly. I definitely like Notre Dame. It’s one of my top schools.”

Thomas visited Notre Dame with his teammate Top 100 defensive end Darrion Henry – who Notre Dame is recruiting heavily.

“It was a great atmosphere when we went up there for the spring game,” Thomas said.

“I liked it a lot. They run a defense that’s similar to ours so if I committed, it wouldn’t be hard to learn their defense. So, that would be good, and I like the way they play their linebackers close.

“I’m likely going to get up there again.”

According to Thomas; Louisville, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, and Wisconsin are also in consistent contact.

ATH – Ethan West

Midlothian (Va.) Cosby four-star rising junior Ethan West is listed as an inside linebacker. However, somewhat similar to 2019 Notre Dame prospect Asa Turner, West flashes outstanding position flexibility.

On film, you can see West beating quality cornerbacks with double moves, on verticals, and on jump balls. At linebacker, you can see the 6-foot-4, 225-pound athlete fill the A-gap on one play while covering the slot and breaking up a pass in the flat on another.

That type of athleticism is extremely valuable with his size, especially considering West has another two years of development on the high school stage ahead of him.

This play caught the attention of Notre Dame, where West visited after receiving interest.

“I’m very (interest in ND),” West said. “(It’s) very hard not to be with what they bring to the table.”

West’s offers from Duke and Vanderbilt tell us that he has his books in order. He also holds offers from Boston College, Florida, LSU, Maryland, Michigan, Nebraska, North Carolina, Rutgers, Syracuse, Temple, Texas A&M, Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Wake Forest.

Surely, West is worth tracking this fall.

ILB – Korey Smith

On paper, Korey Smith appears to check the boxes for Notre Dame.

At inside linebacker, Smith lists at 6-foot-1, 235-pounds, he holds a strong academic profile at a quality prep school in Peddie School (Hightstown, NJ), and plays fast, physical football.

The four-star prospect holds six offers currently, Boston College, North Carolina, Rutgers, Syracuse, Temple, and Vanderbilt. Smith is also receiving interest from Clemson, LSU, Michigan, Penn State, Stanford, USC, and many others.

Smith has heard plenty about the Irish as prior to transferring to Peddie School, he attended Woodberry Forest in Madison, Virginia – the program that produced Doug Randolph, C.J. Prosise, and Greer Martini.

“(Notre Dame is) definitely one of the top schools on my list that I would love to receive an offer from,” Smith said.

“I love ND. The academics, the culture, the fans, it would have a huge impact in my recruitment to get an ND offer.”

On film, what Smith lacks in height, he more than makes up for in punch. At mike linebacker, the stout prospect is a true downhill thumper with a nose for the football.

This fall will be crucial for the New Jersey linebacker as he plans to make a commitment before his spring break.

So far, Smith has received camp invites from Notre Dame but wasn’t able to attend. Still, he hopes to up his stock with the Irish in 2018.