Xavier Watts chose Notre Dame on Friday, and what are the Irish getting in this exceptional athlete?
"First off, they are getting an honor student-athlete who is very intelligent," Omaha Burke coach Paul Limongi said. "Secondly, they are getting a very highly motivated, competitive, talented athlete who loves to compete."
The No. 1 player in the NebHSRecruiting rankings chose not to attend the higher profile camps this spring and summer that might have given him a bump in the national player rankings. But he had the scholarship offers he wanted and isn't too concerned with chasing a player ranking.
Watts is never going to wow you with combine numbers, but if you just watch the film you can see his special talent. In fact, just watch the 2018 state championship game — where he hauled in 11 catches for 160 yards and two touchdowns. He finished the season with 67 receptions for 1,093 yards and 14 touchdowns for the champion Bulldogs, and he also made 58 tackles as a safety.
At 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, Watts could play either receiver or safety at the next level, but the plan for the 2018 All-Nebraska selection is to either be an X or slot receiver at Notre Dame.
"Saying that he is an excellent wide receiver is an understatement," Limongi said. "He is an old-school football player."
Watts is a skilled pass catcher and a good red-zone target with a large catch radius. His natural instincts help him make winning plays. He's a multi-sport athlete with great timing on jump balls and the burst to run away from tacklers. He can take the top off the defense with crisp route running and more than enough game speed. He can also hurt you in the wide receiver screen game or on jet sweeps.
As a defender he breaks on balls quickly in the secondary and isn't afraid to get downhill and make tackles at or behind the line of scrimmage.
More importantly than statistics or game film, Watts brings every intangible coaches want. He has a quiet confidence and exudes leadership qualities both on and off the field.
"Special kid and a once-in-a-lifetime type of kid you get to coach," Limongi said. "A tremendously humble kid who wants to be the best he can be. Just a well-rounded, tough, good football player. He is everything you want."
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Photos: Division I basketball and football recruits in Nebraska for the 2020 class
These are the basketball and football players from Nebraska in the 2020 class who have at least one Division I scholarship offer. Did we miss anyone? Let us know by sending an email to email@example.com