Brian Kelly has landed his first verbal commitment to play for the Fighting Irish. Wide receiver Austin Collinsworth, a three-star recruit on both Rivals.com and Scout.com, held offers from Oregon and Stanford among others. Collinsworth played for Highlands High School in Fort Thomas, Kentucky.
Collinsworth's father Chris played wide receiver in the NFL for the Cincinnati Bengals and worked in the NBC booth during Notre Dame broadcasts back in the early 90s. Interestingly, Chris Collinsworth was not viewed as a friend of Notre Dame by many Irish followers. Oftentimes he seemed to favor the opposition — though not nearly as openly as current announcers Tom Hammond and Pat Haden. They are terrible (Thank God for Sirius Radio).
Looking at his tape, Collinsworth appears to be quite fast. He played both safety and wide receiver in high school, but he is apparently going to get his first opportunity at wide receiver. It should be noted that Collinsworth was offered a scholarship by Cincinnati while Brian Kelly was the head coach of the Bearcats. It follows then that Kelly, having targeted the relatively unheralded Collinsworth for a long period of time, believes that Austin is what Kelly refers to as, "RKGs" or "Right Kinda Guys" for his program.
Collinsworth will appear in the annual US Army All American Bowl on January 9, 2010 at 1pm. The game will be broadcast on NBC. There he will be joined by — at least — two future Irish teammates: defensive end Blake Leuders and offensive lineman Christian Lombard.
I would expect a new name or two to surface either during the game or soon afterward.