Jay Bramblett was living the dream of a high football player in Tuscaloosa. He was starter at Hillcrest, where his father was the defensive coordinator, and working his way up to being ranked as the top punter in the class of 2019. Alabama was recruiting him, as his father Mike put it, “like you wouldn’t believe.”

There was one problem.  The recruitment was unlikely to end with a scholarship offer.

Alabama signed Skyler DeLong for its 2018 class, leaving little room for a scholarship punter in 2019. Bramblett jumped on an offer from Notre Dame and became its starting punter as a freshman. He’ll have those duties in the College Football Playoff Semifinal against No. 1 Alabama (11-0) on  Friday (4 p.m., ET, ESPN) at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

The sophomore is averaging 42.3 yards a punt this season for the No. 4 Irish (10-1).

“He’s had a big following for people around Tuscaloosa all year, but this one is probably a little special, and he’ll probably be a little extra motivated to perform well in this one, knowing the spotlight’s a little brighter,” said Hillcrest coach Sam Adams.