Quinn Carroll is taking his talents to South Bend.
Carroll, a 6-6, 295-pound offensive tackle at Edina High School and the top-ranked football recruit in Minnesota for the Class of 2019, announced Tuesday on KARE-TV’s 10 p.m. news broadcast that he has committed to play for Notre Dame.
The high school junior and four-star recruit was heavily recruited by the Gophers and had coach P.J. Fleck’s squad as one of his six finalists.
Carroll, who is rated as the No. 1 player in Minnesota by recruiting-focused website 247Sports.com and the No. 87 player nationally and the No. 12 offensive tackle nationally, also had Ohio State, Penn State, Virginia Tech and Wisconsin in his final six.
In choosing Notre Dame, Carroll didn’t follow the path of his father, Jay, who was a standout tight end for the Gophers from 1981-1983.
“It was a very difficult decision, and each school offered something unique for me,” Carroll said. “When it boiled down to it, I felt called because of these three things: the faith-based school, the unique academic experience, and the fact that I could go to Minnesota like my father, and that would be awesome, or I could go to Virginia Tech like by brother, but I could create a new experience for myself, my friends, my family.”
Fleck and his staff made Carroll a recruiting priority, even taking a helicopter from the university’s Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex to Apple Valley last September to watch Carroll’s Edina team play Eastview. Fleck wore a gold Gophers jersey with Carroll’s No. 75, and wide receivers coach Matt Simon, whose recruiting territory is Minnesota, donned a gold jersey with No. 83, which Jay Carroll wore for the Gophers.
Carroll acknowledged his decision might not be popular in Minnesota.
“This is nothing negative against [the Gophers],” he said, “but I just felt called elsewhere.”