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July 10, 2011
Post up: Okwara commits
Romeo Okwara held an anti-press conference to announce his college decision on Sunday. Instead of playing the hat game, Okwara posted his Notre Dame commitment on his Facebook page.
The three-star defender posted "Committed to Notre Dame!" on his wall, in effect breaking his own news.
Okwara confirmed the commitment with Irish Illustrated via text message as he became the 12th verbal pledge in Notre Dame's '12 recruiting class and the second outside linebacker.
Okwara's father Julius also confirmed the commitment late Sunday night.
"We wanted to make sure to get that done," said Julius Okwara. "You go to so many schools that the more you go to you get confused. Notre Dame was a beautiful school. They have a good business school. That impressed me too."
Okwara visited Notre Dame on July 7 alongside his father for a first look at the Irish program, which includes former Ardrey Kell teammate Prince Shembo at a similar position the latest standout from the Charlotte program would play in South Bend. Okwara left campus with Notre Dame firmly among his leaders alongside North Carolina, Clemson and Virginia Tech, with plans to return to the Irish for an official visit.
"It was good, I really liked it," Okwara told Irish Illustrated less than 48 hours before making his commitment. "I had fun with the players and they seem like really good guys. They told me they liked to be there and to play for their coaches. I really liked that a lot."
Okwara said Note Dame told him the target was three outside linebackers in this class with one commitment already on board in Perkins. He said he planned to wait on making a commitment until during his senior season.
Still, the Irish made a strong impression on Okwara before he heading back to North Carolina on Friday night.
"I knew (Notre Dame) was a great academic school and I was expecting to hear a lot about that," Okwara said. "The more I found out about it, I really liked it a lot. Mostly I'll remember the atmosphere and what the players were like."
And now Okwara will be one of them.