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May 25, 2009

Welch makes it happen

If the recruiting process was a roller coaster Alex Welch might need a motion sickness bag.

The 6-foot-5, 225-pound tight end has been coasting downhill for the past couple of weeks he added big-time offers from Notre Dame, Ohio State and Oklahoma.

Last week the four-star prospect from Cincinnati, Ohio visited both Notre Dame and Ohio State to learn more about each school. Those visits helped Welch decide he wanted to follow his uncle, former Irish linebacker Steve Heimkreiter, to South Bend. He verbally committed to Notre Dame on Sunday.

"I called (Charlie Weis) last night," Welch said on Monday. "He was very excited. He said I made his Memorial Day weekend."

Welch said the combination of growing up following the Irish family and being on campus last week helped him to make a speedy decision.

"Just being up there and talking with my family, that's where I belong," he said. "I fit in."

The decision was an easy one for the Welch family, but it came a bit sooner than expected. As recently as Saturday, just a few hours after visiting Columbus, Welch said it could take more than a month to make his decision.

"My parents were up there with me on the visit and that's where they wanted me to go, but they wanted me to make my own decision," he said. ""Talking with them, I decided that's where I wanted to go and I didn't want to delay the inevitable."

Following his commitment, Welch called current Irish tight end Kyle Rudolph, a former Elder Panther, so share the good news.

"I think he was just getting home," Welch said. "I was telling him I was getting close, so he was ready for it."

And now Welch is ready for the roller coaster ride to slow down.

"I want to go back to being a normal high school kid again," he said.

Welch said he plans to visit South Bend several times this summer as he prepares for his final season at Elder High.



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