Notre Dame went into the 2022 cycle looking for two top level tight ends, and now that Atlanta (Ga.) Westminster star Holden Staes and West Des Moines (Iowa) Valley standout Eli Raridon are in the class the Irish have met their goal.
Notre Dame has yet to get to its official visit period and yet the tight end class is already completely. That means not only has the staff loaded up on talent in the 2022 class, the staff can not get a major head start when it comes to recruiting the 2023 tight end class.
After landing a pair of tight ends in the 2020, 2021 and now the 2022 classes the Notre Dame staff will be going after just one tight end in the 2023 class. The advantage of that, combined with the ability to get an early start, means the staff can focus on the best of the best at the position.
I mean, it's Notre Dame, which means we are talking about Tight End U, so that should always be the objective.
There are already three extremely talented and highly ranked tight ends on the 2023 board, and the odds are good that more will be added now that the staff can focus more on that class. It's still early, but early film watching has me thinking the 2023 tight end class will be loaded.
City: Minneapolis, Minn.
High School: Robbinsdale Cooper
247Sports: 4-star - No. 55 overall - No. 9 athlete
Rivals: 4-star - No. 64 overall - No. 5 tight end
Howard is an impressive player on film. He has excellent size for such a young prospect, and he's a fluid athlete. Howard has an advanced feel for route running and he knows how to work himself open. As he gets older and his body matures you'll see Howard become even more explosive, and that's a scary thought when you consider how good he is already.
Howard has long arms and he attacks the ball in the air. He shows good one-on-one ball skills already and his body control combines with his length to make him a dangerous downfield weapon. Howard is also a pretty good defensive end, which makes him an even more intriguing player.
City: Phoenix, Ariz.
High School: Pinnacle
247Sports: 4-star - No. 63 overall - No. 3 tight end
Rivals: 4-star - No. 75 overall - No. 6 tight end
Robinson has outstanding film already. He's more of a wide receiver right now than he is a tight end, which says a lot about his game. At 6-6 and 225 pounds, Robinson spends most of his time in the slot or on the outside, and he's a highly advanced route runner. His feel for the game is excellent, and his ball skills are exceptional for such a young player. I love his focus in traffic, and he's a tough athlete.
Robinson is really smooth, but he shows an impressive burst off the ball. Robinson gets off the ball quickly, gets to top speed in a hurry and he accelerates quite well to the football. He has a very young body, which makes me think he's going to get even faster as he gets older. Robinson has arguably the highest ceiling of any tight end in the 2023 class.
Robinson isn't the highest ranked tight end on this list, but he's at the top of my list at this point.
City: St. Louis, Mo.
High School: DeSmet
247Sports: 4-star - No. 130 overall - No. 6 tight end
Rivals: 4-star - No. 86 overall - No. 7 tight end
Markway is a two-way standout for DeSmet, thriving as a throwback tight end and at defensive end. Markway is massive and he's a punishing blocker. He thrives on the edge, he dominates from a fullback alignment and he's extremely quick working to the edge on counters and wraps.
Markway isn't as fast as the players mentioned above, but he has nimble feet and good balance. He thrives working the short to intermediate zones, and his size matches well with his ball skills to project him to be an outstanding chain mover at the next level.
OTHER NAMES TO KNOW
I expect Notre Dame to continue expanding its tight end board, and I wouldn't be surprised if it happens relatively soon. Here are some other names to know (listed alphabetically):
Mathias Barnwell, 6-5, 240, Fredericksburg (Va.) Riverbend
Jackson Bowers, 6-5, 225, Mesa (Ariz.) Mountain View
Shamar Easter, 6-6, 210, Ashdown (Ark.) High School
Jaden Greathouse, 6-3, 205, Austin (Texas) Westlake
Tanner LeMaster, 6-6, 235, Washington Court House (Ohio) High School
Ty Lockwood, 6-5, 220, Thompsons Station (Tenn.) Independence
Walker Lyons, 6-5, 230, Folsom (Calif.) High School
Brennan Parachek, 6-5, 225, Dexter (Mich.) High School
Riley Williams, 6-5, 230, Portland (Ore.) Central Catholic
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