Before even having reported to campus for summer school and work outs, Eddie Vanderdoes has been granted permission by Notre Dame to leave the Fighting Irish program and will instead sign with UCLA, according to the Sacramento Bee.
Eddie Vanderdoes makes it official: Says via text that he thanks Notre Dame for lifting recruiting ban,allowing him to sign with UCLA.
— Joe Davidson (@SacBee_JoeD) June 4, 2013
In late May, news surfaced that Vanderdoes was seeking a release from Notre Dame and initially it looked as if he would not get it. Things have evidently since changed, and Vanderdoes will head to Los Angeles to begin summer school on June 24.
Though Notre Dame ultimately lifted the recruiting ban on him, they did not let him go scott-free. According to Joe Schad of ESPN, the Fighting Irish did not release Vanderdoes from his Letter of Intent and he will only be eligible for three years of play with the Bruins.
Vanderdoes cites family reasons as his motive for being willing to give up a year of football just to get out of Notre Dame, but for the Fighting Irish, this could be worrisome.
The Irish did not want to release Vanderdoes from his LOI, as they were worried that he would rejoin their rivals, USC. Though this will ultimately not be the case, this development with Vanderdoes does make things interesting for the Trojans, who are currently involved in a similar situation with five-star linebacker Matthew Thomas.
Thomas signed with Florida State in February, but made it clear even then that it was not his choice. In May, Thomas announced he was seeking a release from the university to pursue an opportunity at either USC or Georgia. That situation is still pending, but Notre Dame’s decision with Vanderdoes could influence the Seminoles to do them same, or even release Thomas entirely.