At the end of the Irish Invasion camp, Notre Dame offensive coordinator Tommy Rees pulled aside CJ Carr for a one-on-one throwing session.
The Saline (Mich.) High class of 2024 quarterback went into Sunday hoping to leave South Bend, Ind. armed with a scholarship offer from the Fighting Irish. He clearly impressed Rees and Co., as Notre Dame extended the good news to the rising sophomore prospect.
“I think it’s a really big offer,” Carr said. “Just walking around their campus — it was beautiful. I’m excited to see where my recruitment goes with them.”
Being coached by Rees, who is Notre Dame’s quarterbacks coach, offensive coordinator and a former signal caller for the Irish, was a highlight of Carr’s experience on campus.
“I loved Coach Rees; he was really nice,” Carr said. “We did drills where you’re throwing in situations that you’re not always comfortable in — throwing off your back foot and in awkward positions. I loved the way he coached us in that camp.”
The last name Carr is synonymous with Michigan football. CJ’s grandfather, Lloyd Carr, coached at Michigan from 1980-2007 with the last 13 seasons being as the Wolverines’ head coach and his father is Jason Carr, a quarterback for U-M from 1992-95.
Even though the young Carr might bleed maize and blue, he’s no lock for the Wolverines. Carr holds offers from Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State and Nebraska in addition to the Fighting Irish. It wouldn’t surprise anyone if Carr continued the family business of Michigan football, but he’s looking at all of his options.
And Notre Dame is on Carr early. Notre Dame didn’t offer its first quarterbacks (Steve Angeli, Gavin Wimsatt) in the 2022 class until the August of their junior season. For the 2023 cycle, the Irish its initial gunslingers (Arch Manning, Dante Moore) in March of their sophomore year.
Following a trend? Rees’ first two quarterback offers in the 2024 class just came this past week, as Carr and Carlsbad (Calif.) High’s Julian Sayin received their Fighting Irish scholarship offers, coming in their summer before their sophomore year of high school.
“I’m just blessed to have received it,” Carr said of Notre Dame. “It’s a special place. Knowing they think that highly of me makes me want to do even better and work harder.”
Notre Dame’s Irish Invasion Camp was Sunday, but Carr was actually on campus Friday to see some college baseball. He saw Connecticut knock off Michigan 6-1, and Notre Dame defeat Central Michigan 10-0 in the NCAA regionals, played in Frank Eck Stadium.
He made sure to see Notre Dame’s football stadium while on campus.
“I was shocked; it was absolutely beautiful,” he said. “You walk in there and it’s like a dream. It was amazing; I loved the whole campus.”
Carr was the backup to class of 2022 recruit Larry Robinson last season, but in a playoff game against Rockford, Carr started and completed 20 of 28 passes for 231 yards, one touchdown and one interception but Saline lost 40-17.
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