Notre Dame needs another great year at wide receiver, and one of the top prospects on the board is Camas (Wash.) Union star Tobias Merriweather.
Hometown: Vancouver, Wash.
High School: Union
IB Grade: 4.0 (Top 100 caliber prospect)
Upside Grade: 5.0
Offers: Notre Dame, Oregon, USC, Stanford, Washington, Nebraska, UCLA, Utah, Washington State, Colorado, California, Arizona, Oregon State
Recruited By: Del Alexander
247Sports: 4-star - No. 74 overall - No. 9 WR
ESPN: 4-star - No. 115 overall - No. 10 ATH
Rivals: 4-star - No. 141 overall - No. 15 WR
Composite: 4-star - No. 96 overall - No. 13 WR
If you are someone who likes player comps, when I watch Merriweather on film I constantly think I am watching a younger version of Tee Higgins. Long, smooth, fluid, advanced feel for the game and really impressive ball skills.
Like Higgins (who ran a 4.54 at Clemson's Pro Day prior to the 2020 NFL Draft), Merriweather isn't a burner, but he's got enough long speed, and there's a lot of untapped speed potential there. Remember, outside of some camp films the last time we saw Merriweather on a football field was during his sophomore season. Like many 2022 prospects, he wasn't able to play as a junior due to decisions made by the state.
Merriweather has freakishly long legs, which tells me he still has some growing to do. His length is incredibly impressive, and he chews up a lot of ground in a hurry due to his long strides. The Union star is a smooth and fluid athlete, more so than you'd expect from a tall, young, lanky athlete. His balance is outstanding, as is his agility for his size.
Merriweather has long arms and fast hands, and he's a very good leaper, traits that make him very difficult to defend on the perimeter, in the red zone and on jump balls. He shows the ability to make plays after the catch, and you can see his foot quickness in space and at the top of his routes.
The physical tools are impressive, but Merriweather has a very mature game. He's advanced from a technical standpoint for his age, and his understanding of using leverage and his release to manipulate defenders for separation is impressive, and Merriweather shows a knack for finding soft spots in the zone.
Those traits should make him a strong possession and red zone receiver, but his ball skills and long speed make him a threat down the field. If I'm right and he has another gear in him as he matures his recruiting profile will skyrocket. There's a lot of potential here with Merriweather, and if you're a coach who cares about upside and projection he's got to be at or near the top of your board.
To comment below be sure to sign up for a FREE Disqus account, which you can get HERE.
Become a premium Irish Breakdown member, which grants you access to all of our premium content, our premium message board and gets you a FREE subscription to Sports Illustrated! Click on the link below for more
Be sure to stay locked into Irish Breakdown all the time!
Join the Irish Breakdown community!
Subscribe to the Irish Breakdown podcast on iTunes.
Subscribe to the Irish Breakdown YouTube channel.
Follow me on Twitter: @CoachD178
Like and follow Irish Breakdown on Facebook