With small forwards Matt Ryan and Elijah Burns having already verbally committed to Notre Dame, head coach Mike Brey landed a third commitment in the Class of 2015 Thursday night. Four-star shooting guard Rex Pflueger, who attends Mater Dei HS in Santa Ana, California, announced via Twitter that he has decided to attend Notre Dame.
And Pflueger did so in style, showing off some custom sneakers in a move similar to that of former Mater Dei teammate Stanley Johnson.
Notre Dame beat out California, San Diego State, Texas A&M and Washington State for Pflueger’s pledge, and the commitment comes less than a week after the 6-foot-6 shooting guard took his official visit to the ACC school. Also on campus last weekend: Burns and Ryan.
RELATED: CBT’s profile of Pflueger from July 2013
Pflueger put together a solid junior season at Mater Dei, averaging 12.0 points, 5.1 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game on a team that won its fourth consecutive state title last spring. This summer Pflueger played with the Oakland Soldiers grassroots program, averaging 8.4 points, 4.1 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game.
Pflueger’s versatility as an offensive player is something Notre Dame can use in its offense next season, especially when considering the fact that both Jerian Grant and Pat Connaughton are entering their final year on campus. Pflueger and his fellow 2015 commits will join a perimeter rotation that is expected to include sophomores Demetrius Jackson, Steve Vasturia and V.J. Beachem and freshman Matt Farrell.
The first open period of the month became a profitable one for Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey on Friday, as Iona Prep (New Rochelle, N.Y.) small forward Matt Ryan announced his decision to attend the ACC school via Twitter.
Ryan was a priority recruit for Notre Dame, and that status didn’t change despite the fact that Ryan played in just eight games this past season due to a hip injury. Having undergone surgery in the spring, the 6-foot-5 Ryan hasn’t played in any grassroots events this summer.
And in an article written by Mitch Abramson of the New York Daily News back in February, the hip issue is something that Ryan had to deal with for quite some time before undergoing surgery.
Ryan, who has dealt with pain in both hips since originally injuring himself as a freshman, will have two surgeries — on March 3 and March 17 — to repair torn labrums and bone impingements. Ryan’s father, Rich Ryan, told the Daily News on Wednesday that his son’s medical condition is similar to the one Alex Rodriguez dealt with for much of last baseball season.
Ryan’s arrival in South Bend will come after Pat Connaughton wraps up his Notre Dame career, and that’s an important departure for the Fighting Irish to account for (Jerian Grant will also be a senior next year). Taking Grant’s 19.0 points per game in the 12 contests he played last season before being declared ineligible into consideration, he and Connaughton combined to average 32.5 points per game in 2013-14.
With that being the case there will be a need for others to step forward, with Ryan being one of those options when he arrives on campus.