You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

Irish Insights

  • Irish nab linebacker for 2015 class
    Te'von Coney, a senior linebacker at Palm Beach Gardens Community High School in Florida, announced his commitment to Notre Dame.
  • Notre Dame's Jaylon Smith quarterfinalist for award
    From the The Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation: The 20 student-athletes represent the qualities embodied by the award – Integrity, Maturity, Performance, Academics, Community
  • No. 1 Irish lose to IU in soccer
    The eighth-ranked Indiana men’s soccer program defeated No. 1 Notre Dame 1-0 Wednesday night, scoring in the 19th minute on a goal by Patrick Doody.

Irish coach makes statement on tragedy

Matt James will not get the chance to chase his dreams.

The Notre Dame football recruit died Friday in Panama City, Fla., after he fell from a third-floor balcony.

James, 17, was on spring break with friends when the accident happened.

“The Notre Dame football program is in a state of disbelief and incredible sadness with the news of this tragic event,” Irish coach Brian Kelly said in a statement. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Matt James in this most trying of times.”

James was the Irish’s first impact recruit under Kelly.

The 6-foot-6, 291-pound offense tackle from Cincinnati’s St. Xavier High School chose Notre Dame over Ohio State on signing day. He earned USA Today first-team All-America honors and participated in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

“On a personal level, I got to know Matt quite well over the past few years, and he was a wonderful young man from a great family,” Kelly said. “Matt was an extremely talented person who was very bright and possessed a great dry sense of humor. He could not wait to join the Notre Dame family.

“My prayers and deepest condolences go out to the James family as well as the St. Xavier High School and Cincinnati communities.”