There probably is someone else that I’m forgetting about, but I can’t recall anyone committing earlier in the process to Notre Dame than offensive tackle Dillan Gibbons.
The 2017 prospect should be a highly ranked player when rankings for 2017 kids are more available and has the tools to become a very good one down the road for the Irish.
It’s obvious by looking at him that Gibbons is nowhere close to physically maturing yet. That is frightening for a player who is already weighs over 300 pounds. He has plenty of time to reshape his body and get ready for the next level. He has the frame and length that programs are looking for in a tackle.
He is fairly light on his feet for a player his size at that age, but needs to work to improve his flexibility.
Gibbons is that next level of nasty that is beyond a finisher. He is driving guys ten to fifteen yards down the field and pancaking them. Then if he gets a chance, he’ll go find somebody else and pancake them on the same play. That kind of mentality to finish already puts him at an advanced level.
His pad level can get a little high, but he does a great job of fitting his hands inside and driving through contact. He doesn’t get that explosive hip snap when he pops a defender yet, but that should come with added strength. He wins mostly with size and effort as a run blocker, but overall his technique is good at this stage of his development.
He bends a little bit too much at the waste in pass protection and doesn’t quite know how to use his length. He has to develop better timing and a more violent punch, but that can be taught. He slides well and has a solid base technically to work with and is further along than many other players his age.
He should be a great fit as a future right tackle at Notre Dame.
Gibbons has the potential to develop into a mauler and the kind of dominating run blocker that defensive lineman hate competing against every week. It’s early and he still has a long way to go before South Bend becomes his home, but he has the tools to be a very good one for the Irish.
Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He was a coach at the college and high school level and is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach).